WIN Wyoming and WIN the Rockies

Thought Bullets
November 2002

The Truth About Your Weight and Your Health

I recently read Glenn Gaesserís book, Big Fat Lies - The Truth about Your Weight and Your Health. I love the humor incorporated into the book. Hereís a couple of examples:

J Dr. Gaesser documents more than 20 studies over the last 20 years that show weight loss (either intentional or unintentional) actually increases the risk of premature death. Of the few studies finding longer life with weight loss, one documents an 11-hour increase in longevity per pound of weight lost. Gaesser observes that results from this study suggest a person would have to lose 796 pounds to gain an additional year of life.

J Another section of the book advocates physical activity for health and fitness, not for a method of weight loss. According to a CDC study, 44% of U.S. women want to lose 25 pounds. That would require about a 1,100 mile walk - or walking the distance from New York City to Orlando. Dr. Gaesser states itís easy to understand why most people quit before getting to Philadelphia.

Humor aside, this book offers a serious message about the myths surrounding body weight. We can no longer continue to give so much power to the bathroom scale.

Source: Big Fat Lies - The Truth about Your Weight and Your Health, updated edition. Glenn A. Gaesser. Carlsbad, CA. Gurze Books, 2002.   ISBN 0-936077-42-5

Compiled by Betty Holmes, MS, RD

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