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Freak Show Fat

Pictured is Chauncy Morlan, who once made a living as a side show fat man. People paid money to look at him, because he was so unusually obese. A hundred years later, you can walk into any buffet restaurant and see a dozen people bigger than Morlan. Adam Ozimek at Modeled Behavior wonders what size people we will consider normal or freakish 100 years from now. Link -via TYWKIWDBI

This man is rather svelt compared to the Rascal Jockeys one regularly sees at the big box department stores. Would not even warrant a sideways glance. My have our standards changed.
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Well this is just offensive bullcrap. Chauncy Morlan weighed upwards of 550lbs (several websites claim 602lbs)...that's still in the "freakish" territory these days. Yes, there are people his size when you go places in America, though certainly not a DOZEN, and they're still viewed as freaks. BELIEVE ME. My husband, at 6 feet tall, weighs a solid 425lbs. He is constantly stared at, treated badly and viewed as a freak. It is NOT OKAY to make fun of a fat person or treat them badly. You have no idea the pain they go through on a daily basis. And NO. It IS NOT as easy as putting down the fork...if it were I would guess that there would not be an obesity epidemic in this country.

I simply do not understand how a feeling and emotional human being can post something of this nature and think it was okay. It's not. You're promoting hate and opening up comments that are going to hurt people...a LOT of people according to the medical community. WHY would you do that? I understand how you feel about the medically obese, I just don't think that posting a picture of a sideshow freak is anything but needlessly inflammatory.
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How is it offensive to point out that someone considered freakishly fat in the past would not be considered a freak today? I don't hate fat people. I know lots of people over 400 pounds, which makes it seem weird that it was once so unusual.

You really should try the buffets where I live, although I don't go anymore since they doubled the prices.
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Wow laura, your husband is pretty fat. Like, "put down the fork"-fat. Oh wait. You said that's not as easy.

Hmm. If it isn't easy, rather don't attempt it.
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MissC, my point is that he would still be considered a freak. This entire comment section, and the post in general kind of prove that. I believe you when you say that there are decidedly large people at your local buffet...but the fact that you have mentioned them indicates to me that you took special note of their size. Were they not still considered freaks, you wouldn't have even mentioned them.

And Max Power, perhaps I should have worded differently, I simply mean that losing weight isn't as easy as people think it is.
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I think the point is that we should not be able to view obesity as normal. How could we normalize something so unhealthy and deadly? I'm not condoning treating people badly because of their size;however talking about obesity is probably one of the best ways to promote awareness of the issue. With awareness comes prevention.

I teach my children to eat healthy and play outside and that being overweight is unhealthy. I want them to live a long time and give me healthy grandkids.
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I weigh 330 pounds, have weighed over 290 for most of my adult life. My brother (year younger) same parents, eats more than I do, AND has tried eating every weight gain powder on the market and can not get over 135 lbs.

I used to play pick up basketball daily and have tried almost every diet or exercise regimen ever conceived.

It works, to an extent. The first 30lbs pour off me like water, then the weight loss plateaus and eventually I weaken and eat a meal that actually leaves me feeling full and that I enjoy. Then I am on the road to "relapse".

Finally I got tired of fighting this battle. I still hoop because I enjoy it, and I still try to "mix in a salad" once in a while, but I am not going to oblige society by hating myself for numbers on a scale.
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Unless a person is diseased, carrying a parasitic twin, or has a monstrous tumor, there is no excuse to be fat. It is something that people do willfully to themselves. My favorite cousin died at 18, and weighed 390 pounds. His mother died at 37 weighing in at 500 pounds and needed a special coffin.

Should fat people be held up to ridicule? No, not in person, but they still receive plenty of derision for what they have done to themselves on forums and in jokes. Truthfully, I hold them in contempt for what they have made themselves into, because I still miss my cousin, but I try to be compassionate to them. At the buffet my elderly aunts drag me to, some of the people are so fat that they are in wheel chairs, and eat tray after tray after tray of fat and grease and slops. I can hardly eat as they slurp their way to the bottom of every bowl.
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Oh thank you, mighty felixthecat for not ridiculing poor fatties like me openly...

Of course, I suspect that if you weren't cowardly you might be willing to criticize me in person, but it's much safer behind your computer.

Let me guess, you consider your trim waistline a testament to your self-discipline and work ethic.

I also guess you don't have a helluva lot of other accomplishments to "hang your hat on".

I also guess that you hate yourself and hate your life and can't bear to see anyone enjoy anything even if it's just a buffet lunch.

I don't really hold you in contempt felix, openly or behind the veil of the internet. But I do pity you for your lack of humanity.
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Apologies for being personal felix.

I just find the fact you believe fat people deserve contempt offensive...but I shouldn't have gotten angry and resorted to name calling.
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Another example of recent changes in perception of body habitus can be seen in the 1941 movie "The Maltese Falcon," when Humphrey Bogart phones the police to tell them to look for Mr. Gutman and tells them "You can't miss him - he must weigh 300 pounds!"
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Fat-hate is ridiculous. It's SO easy to judge others when you've never had to face the problem yourself.

Anyway, the buffet comment to the post made me cringe b/c yes it did have the tone of being a bash.
BUT I still found the post interesting b/c it is neat to see what was considered freakish back then that most of us probably don't look twice at now.
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I weigh somewhere from 250 to 275 pounds; it fluctuates that much.

I don't eat "fat and grease and slops." I ***NEVER*** eat junk food. For the most part if I eat desserts, it's some sort of no-sugar-added thing. I don't drink sugar-laden sodas and go out of my way to avoid HFCS and partially hydrogenated oils. I probably watch what I eat more closely than 90% of you lucky people who make fun of "fatties," because I am diabetic. (And before you claim diabetes is my own fault, I'll note that my skinny-as-a-rail grandmother had it, and passed it to her daughter, who passed it to me.)

EVERY MEAL, every bite of food I put in my mouth, I worry what it's going to do to my blood sugar and my weight.

I've tried low-carb diets, and I wind up losing *some* weight that comes back but my blood sugar goes up. I've tried low-fat diets, and they don't work at all. And I've tried simply starving myself, skipping meals, eating a minimum, until I couldn't work from the distraction -- and it barely registered on the scale.

And I exercise regularly, walking a mile to and from work (including my lunch breaks) and occasionally further, plus workouts on a stationary bike and so forth.

For all you lucky skinny people who think anyone can weigh 110 pounds if they just stop being lazy -- I am having a difficult time being civil in this post because your behavior disgusts me more than you can imagine.
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Wow, this is just like being on Digg where every fat-related post becomes a rant about how all fatties are nasty, lazy slobs with no self-control. Death to all fatties. Guess, I'll be the first on lined up against the wall in front of the firing squad.

It is not as easy as putting down the fork. If my employer's health insurance would cover gastric bypass or lap band , I would get the surgery in a heart beat.

The only way I can get that surgery is to go on welfare and get Medicaid. Nice!
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I'm curious what future folks will think of some of today's very thin celebrities. Will the rail thin actresses and models still be perceived as pretty, or will they seem really odd looking? Especially as people in our country are on average growing in size, will being very slender seem extra strange?

As far as fatness in freak shows goes, you've got to bear historical context in mind. Back in the heyday of freak shows, people didn't come in contact with as many people. There was no internet or tv. The main people that most people saw were the people in their town, and for people that lived in smaller towns and rural areas, that wasn't a lot of people. We are a more connected, more mobile society now. You just didn't see as many people,so your sample size of what was normal was just smaller. If your town didn't have anyone living in it over 500 pounds, you might have never seen anyone that big until the traveling show passed through. Sure, now we all know some heavy people, we all see some heavy people. Back then, not necessarily everyone had.

The standards for what was unusual were lower because the population had less exposure. It's the same for a lot of sideshow attractions. You can see more tattoos on a lot of average people walking down the street than you than would on a lot of "tattoed woman" or "illustrated man" type vintage sideshow freaks. Now to be a sideshow performer as a "tattooed woman" you'll need fairly well full body, full facial, ink coverage. To be exciting, sideshow acts have to be something that people haven't seen. It was just easier to be outside of the norm of what audiences had experienced back then.
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Foosnark: Ok, so you fall in the exceptions category. Don't try to be a martyr for those who are obese from a life-long series of poor choices regarding their health.

Obesity is pretty well established (with many years of strong scientific research behind it) to be a badge of low self control, low self respect, and general apathy toward health. The growing acceptance of obesity is incredibly dangerous to society, as it results in the scary numbers of obese children who have no idea that there is a choice about it. Adults should generally know how to stay healthy, but allowing children to be obese goes way beyond just unfortunate choices or laziness. That breaks over into sheer immorality and evil.
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I used to be an average weight, 5'5", 140 lbs. I've got a curvy body anyway and would never be able to be "skinny". I gained about 40 pounds in the first four years of my marriage, it was gradual, I didn't notice it, and my exercise habits and diet had not really changed...my metabolism did.

Then I had my baby and am 230 lbs. currently. I have not been able to lose the baby fat, I exercise more, and have changed my diet to eat healthier. I cut out ALL sweets and chocolate during Lent and lost 10 lbs, but can't figure out how to lose the rest.

It's not for a lack of trying, and I certainly don't want to end up like my mother who is obese, has diabetes, and is now in a wheelchair (following a stroke) at the age of 56. A large part of her health problems is due to her weight (the rest is genetic arthritis and other genetic factors). I refuse to end up like that.
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I also want to add that I cut out as many trans-fats, hydrogenated/partially hydrogenated oils, and corn syrup out of my diet as I can. My grandmother used to be allergic to corn so I am actually used to eating healthier foods without HFCS. I use real maple syrup because I prefer the taste even though it's a LOT more expensive.

That's the other thing, healthy food is pricey!
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Ennery, I don't see myself as an exception. Obviously there are obese people who don't make much effort to try to take care of themselves. The responsibility to do that DOES rest on their shoulders.

But there is a tremendous social force telling them they're worthless. If a 600 pound person loses goes through the tremendous effort of losing 350 pounds, no doubt with medical assistance -- they will *still* be considered worthless, lazy, decadent and disgusting to every stranger who sees them.

My point here is that people should not make assumptions with their eyes. This goes almost as much for body shape as it does for ethnicity.
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Wow... I'm hungry now!!!! I'll eat like a chub and then have a desert, maybe 4... Finally, I'll sit down and play FAT PRINCESS all night long!!!!

Ahahahahahahaha gag hahahaaaaaa!
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Commentator "Heroin" hit the nail on the head, for the good of society obesity should never become 'normal'.

Fatness / obesity ("fatness" is a trigger worth, tha's why I am using it) is not just a personal thing it affects everyone, it increases health insuranc coste, it inconveniences other people, it fills hospital with people who basically have self inflicted sickness and disease.

There is a reason people are so much more fatter now than 100 years ago, back then they ate more healthier and less, and they exercised more in their daily life. Thats it. Its not genetic, its not personal circumstance, its just diet and exercise.
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I remember a few years ago, seeing a group of boys by the river. Two of the boys were average size and fit. they were able to run around and play. The third boy was obese. He was moving slowly, out of breath, and eating from a bag of chips as he struggled to keep up with the other two.

I think habit has a lot to do with it.
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Geez, everyone saying "it's not as easy as putting down the fork", it really is. Losing weight is a simple math problem of making sure calories expended exceeds calories consumed in a day. Unless you have a thyroid problem, etc. ANYONE CAN LOSE WEIGHT. It's not that hard.
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I’m still on the fence as far as if there were less fat people 100 years ago. However I remember seeing this clip a while back and someone commented and said “hey where are all of the fat people?” The clip below was taken around 1905 in San Francisco.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nHqpHf_Znzs
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Perhaps fingers are pointing in the wrong direction here.

Go back thirty years and you have considerably less obes people. Right? Thirty years before that and even less (despite the Melissa's benign but historically inaccurate comment).

The rise in obesity - worldwide is simply down to diet and not necessarily down to choice. The rise in obesity is directly linked to the advent of mass produced, pre-prepared food.

I am not making excuses for people who are morbidly obese. However, the finger should at least in part be wagged elsewhere.

Buy in to capitalism. Die in to capitalism.
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To a degree, I agree with "C"; I'm in the process of losing weight right now, and basically it is math. 1 lb = 4500 calories. Calorie Intake - Base Metabolic Rate - calories burned in cardio activity (if applicable) = a number, which if it is positive leads to a weight gain, and weight loss if it is negative. When the number reaches 4500 over a span of days, a pound is lost or gained. Barring a chemical dysfuction, this is just how it works for pretty much everyone. If a person is having trouble losing weight, it's because they take in too many calories, don't exercise enough, or eat too much fat and too little fiber. Where I disagree is where "c" says "It's not that hard". It is hard. Weight loss is not difficult to understand, and it's not impossible, but it is a struggle to adopt and maintain a healthy lifestyle if a person has lived x-amount of years sedentary and eating garbage.

Now, seeing the way the trend has gone over the last century, it is certainly easy to see the folks of the Axiom in Wall-E as "normal" in the future. People have more access to health information now, however, than they did in the late 20th century, and people seem more concerned about their health overall. If social attitudes and education affect the trend, I think you'll see the obesity rate maintain or even drop. It depends on whether people choose to accept this information, or ignore it. So we'll see, I guess.
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Don't you LOVE to see people so bigoted against fat people, they are so blind by their hatred of the overweight, that they use a Freak Show Photo as a basis for historical truth?

After all their is nothing more dependable than a freak show Carney's century-old publicity shot right? right?
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Just a correction: 1 lb of fat = 3500 calories.

We use about 60% of the calories we consume each day for basic bodily functions, which includes simply breathing. The other 40% is up to us to actively use as energy through daily activities and "exercise". If you are breaking even, you can maintain your weight. Negative values lead to weight loss, while positive values lead to weight gain. 80% of weight loss is through diet...20% is through exercise.

I do agree that a finger should be pointed at the mass production of food. Just watch Food, Inc...you won't want to eat for a week.
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No, it is as easy as put down the fork.

We live in a society where people are so easily satiated that they expect instant gratification all the time (fast food, tivo, next day shipping, movies on demand, guaranteed less than thirty minute waits in ER's, et cetera) and become easily disillusioned when they realize that the results are not immediate and take work. How many get thin quick schemes are there out there? And none of them really work. The fact is that if you want to lose a significant amount of weight your diet isn't going to be a one month fiasco, but a lifetime of healthy eating and exercise.
So unless your husband has a genetic disorder, he can lose weight. That doesn't mean he wants to put the effort into doing it, and I am pretty sick of hearing people say things like, "I can't lose weight" because really it's just that person's inability to say, "I don't want to lose weight."

That doesn't mean your husband is a bad dude. I'm sure your husband is rad, and I feel bad that he is unfairly judged, but anyone can lose weight unless health conditions prevent it.
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haha -- just go to Disney World to see the Wall E folks -- they're rolling around on these scooter wheel chair things with biggee mountain dews attached to their mouths with long straws. I was sickened by the state of americans when I want there. And then I watched what they ate -- all highly processed food. Do the math.
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It is not as easy as "put down the fork" for several reasons. 1) A person can't just not eat. They would die. 2) Even if a person does "put down the fork", if what they've chosen to eat isn't nutritious, it isn't going to help them. 3) some people do have serious issues with food, and it takes a lot for them to understand food is fuel and not an indulgence or an emotion or a reward. The process of losing weight takes a lot of learning and planning, and "put down the fork", while very easy and pithy for people to say, is not helpful advice to people seeking a healthier lifestyle.

I do agree, however, that there ARE far too many "conveniences" when it comes to weight loss. Pills, machines (the shake weight?? wtf!!), drinks, clubs, herbal supplements, and of course they don't work. People hear "you don't have to work out or diet to lose weight!!!11" and they think "ah, so I DON'T have to change my lifestyle to get healthy". They're all just great big excuses for people not to make a change and adopt a more healthy lifestyle. And absolutely, unless someone has a metabolic or chemical disorder, people who say "I can't lose weight" are just making excuses.
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There's a huge problem
which nobody has talked about yet: when this photograph was taken, there certainly weren't as many people who were this heavy, but the "ideal" body as portrayed in late-nineteenth century media was realistic, achievable, and healthy. That is LIGHT YEARS away from the situation today. At the end of the 19th century, when Chauncey Morlan was around, nobody would ever even have thought of idolizing size zero and double zero models and actresses. But now people like this are seen as appropriate and achievable body sizes, and not only that, but as virtually the ONLY body shape and size we ever see portrayed in an approving way in the media. The exceptions are rare, and they are just that: exceptions.

Check out this article:

http://www.newsweek.com/id/113689

And being so thin is only the beginning, because every photograph of a model is insanely digitized to the point where even near-anorexic models and media figures never, ever look as thin and "perfect" in person as they ever do in magazines. Virtually NOBODY can look like this, and there is absolutely no healthy reason why ANYBODY should. And I also think that the situation about societal messages and images is starting to change more and more for men.

Why is this important? One reason is that we look at these bizarre, 10 or 20-pounds-away-from-being-in the hospital-for-anorexia bodies and get incredibly discouraged. If we diet and exercise and never, ever get anywhere near that size double zero, then we feel like there's no point of even trying to do anything-- we will still never be acceptable.

There are so very few messages that we should improve our diet or exercise habits just for health reasons. Even nutrition textbooks don't say this! On the other hand, we are constantly, CONSTANTLY bombarded at every waking moment from every source imaginable with the message that only the tiniest possible size is acceptable or worthwhile. So we diet like crazy to get there, and then when we don't, we give up and binge like crazy. Then we're back to dieting like crazy. Then... well, that's how we ended up here...
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It isn't easy to put down the fork? Hell yes it is, you just have to be willing to do it.
How the heck would I know?
Top weight: 240
Currently: 132

I put down the effin fork and I got off my ass and started moving. I stopped going "but but but it r harrrd!" and just freakin' did it. Excuses make me angry. Stop being so darn weak.
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I'm a former fattie. At 4'10" I once weighed 247 lbs. I didn't eat a lot of food, I drank soda all day instead. Once I gave up the soda I lost 120 lbs in two years. It's not always about putting down the fork. Food choices play a huge role in weight loss. HFCS is not nutritive, it's not satisfying, it's flat-out unhealthy. It's also cheap and in more food products than people realize. The sodium content in processed foods is appalling. Sodium causes fluid retention. Additives, preservatives, all fairly modern "improvements" to our lives. Correlation does not equal causation, but in my very humble opinion there is a link between processed foods and obesity.

Eat more natural foods and fewer processed foods, walk at least a mile a day. Ask for support and encouragement from people who love you.
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The obesity epidemic has really only become apparent during the past 40 years. Men are now on average 17 pounds heavier than they were in the 70's and women are 19 pounds heavier. In addition to that the proportion of overweight children, age six to eleven, has more than doubled, while the proportion of overweight adolescents, age twelve to nineteen, has more than tripled.
The two main explanations for why this has happened is changes in lifestyle and changes in diet. Lifestyle change refers to how people in developed nations have become more sedentary, and this is probably due to a large number of factors including modern transportation, entertainment (a stanford study has linked weight gain to television use), and even the changing job environment (less manual labor). The second explanation, changes in diet, refers to things liked processed foods, and additive sugars like High Fructose Corn Syrup. In order to produce food cheaply and safely, manufacturers are processing most of our foods and removing the nutritional value form them as well as adding more fats and sugars. Scientists have found that even though we are an obese society, we are also nutrient deficient and this can be blamed on processed foods. Another big change in our diet is the prevalence of High Fructose Corn Syrup, which now accounts for 9% of the average Americans caloric intake. HFCS is cheaper than sugar in the United States as a result of a combination of corn subsidies and sugar tariffs/quotas, so it is replacing sugar in many products.
So, in regards to it not being "as easy as you think" for people to lose weight, it could very well not be. It's very likely that due to changes in our lifestyle and diets it's harder for people to stay at a healthy weight. In other words,someone leading a normal life in 2010 has a greater potential for weight gain than someone leading a normal life in 1970. That said, obesity is still very unhealthy and has been linked to things such as heart disease,cancer, liver disease, and diabetes. I believe that instead of accepting obesity as the new status quo, we should continue to educate people about healthy diet choice and encourage people to live healthier lives.
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Just for some perspective, the President of the United States in 1909 weighed over 300 pounds. (William H. Taft)

I don't think this guy was probably as "freakish" we might think.
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Weight control is oh so easy.

More exercise, less food = thin.

It's the impulse control that's hard.

That and the failure of most people to do basic math.

If you're trying to lose weight you best not be eating anymore then 1600 calories a day - which if you don't measure EVERYTHING you put in your face, you'll never meet those numbers. And no matter what the fads say, it doesn't matter what those calories are in as long as they total 1600 or less per day.
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I've got a coworker who eats much more smartly than I do, works out frequently, and is in better shape than I am. She's also at least a hundred pounds heavier than I am. It isn't a matter of self-control. It isn't just not eating, which can actually exacerbate weight gain, and telling someone with valid medical reasons that it's their fault only serves to make the thinner person feel superior. They're thin so of course they have better discipline, nevermind the addictions and behaviors they give into.
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These are great (or great-great) grandparents of mine...
http://picasaweb.google.com/westcarleton/Young#5243750132823984402
My mother told me they were the heaviest men in England at the time (which I can't in any way prove). I'm just happy the fat gene wasn't inherited.
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I thoroughly enjoyed reading all the fatties going "but I can't put down the fork :(((((".

Well. You're fat. And you can't put down the fork. Seriously, I have no idea why people make fun of you. XD
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Chauncy Morlan was not a freak, he was a pioneer. He is exactly what you would see if you go to any state fair across the country eating corndogs and any other meat product on a stick.
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I could easily weigh 350 pounds. I love beer and chips and pretzels and pizza and pickled eggs and hamburgers and all sorts of stuff. I can put on 10 pounds over a weekend. I am an eating and beer drinking machine.

But I weigh 195 pounds, because I workout like crazy and make sure not to go hog wild every day. If I gave up and ate whatever I wanted, I'd be fat, period.
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Back them, most people wouldn't not have enough food available to get that fat. Not implying that obesity is not a problem that should be solved ASAP, because it certainly is.
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@Vonskippy

Sounds like a diet that I figured I'd try. It involves having 4 meals a day, each one equalling 400 calories. There's a whole bunch of recipes listed, but I'll have to get in the habit of cooking, which is a habit I have yet to get into regularly.
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Wait until the new "National Health Care"kicks in and the government monitors your weight. You might be hauled off to a camp if you weigh too much.

I don't care what the excuse is--- change your eating habits and your weight will change. You can't continue to gain weight if you burn more calories then you consume.
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Wow...this got so mean so fast. You are what you eat people, and we are being spoon fed high calorie nutrition in every packaged product produced in this country. The likes of Monsanto, Cargill and Con Agra are making sure of it...and we are the guinea pigs my friends. It's not our views on eating or excercise or societies acceptance of what's normal in terms of obesity, it's what we're eating that's setting the bar. I strongly suggest watching "Food, Inc." and "King Corn" to get some idea as to the root of the problem. Keep in mind, many of the foods considered healthful and fit for human consumption are banned in other developed countries....and we wonder why our children are expected to have shorter life spans than we do.
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in Singapore they had a policy that caused fat children to be mocked and made fun of, they were segregated in special fat classes and made to do exercise and diet .

Some killed themselves because they were so unhappy, but overall you have very few fat people in Singapore, so is it moral to kill some people by mocking them if you save a far larger number who would have died because of being fat .

Id say yes so Id be in favor of mocking people doing anything to stop them from ruining their health.
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Here is the problem I have with this whole debate. Everyone keeps saying obese people can't help it or it's not thier fault or it's a disease.... OK fine, my point is IT IS IMPOSSIBLE TO GAIN WIEGHT BY BREATHING... Something MUST be shoveled in for the body to store as fat. If you are genetically predispositioned to wieght gain, then yes, it is a bit more difficult to remain healthy but not impossible. Obesity is NOT a handicap it's a self inflicted wound.
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I weigh 135 lbs (male) and I want to weigh 150-160, but I can't gain the wait for the life of me. Why? Because I eat healthy as hell, and I refuse to put on weight by eating what fat people eat. In high school, I ate basically nothing but fast food and when I saw my metabolism turning around, I took action.

"Cutting back" on soda, candy, and fried food is not dieting. If you want to be thin and healthy, there's no place for any of that stuff AT ALL. Zero. And you can't just lose a bunch of weight, say "mission accomplished," and resume your old habits.

And the genetic arguments are ridiculous. Matter doesn't just appear out of nowhere. You can't cover your body with fat without putting it in your mouth first. Nobody has genes that make them store collared greens as fat.

So if you're physically or psychologically addicted to junk food, just accept the fact that you have to either kick that habit or live with the consequences of being overweight. You are killing yourself slowly by demanding that others consider you attractive. You may win the political correctness battle and make "fat" a four-letter word, but you'll never get people to like the sight of obesity.

I admit that the food I eat does not make me enjoy eating. I resent eating most of the time and only do it out of necessity (like refueling a car) because veggies and grains just don't taste that good. But between the meals, I feel strong, energetic, and attractive. There is a lot of joy to be found in things besides food.
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As for the people that think it is okay to make fun of fat people and that it might even encourage them to lose weight, it will likely have the opposite affect and make them more depressed and eat more.
With that said obesity is also likely the result of emotional problems that need to be addressed. I don't think it is as simple as someone being addicted to food though it probably leads to that.
And yes, there are also other causes to obesity like processed foods, tv, video games, etc.
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