Recently, we saw a brief blurb on ABC news that indicated that obesity rates in America, as well as globally, are continuing to rise. It looks like we’re on track to have 86% of all adults in America categorized as overweight or obese by 2030 – with related health care costs very close to $1 TRILLION! Well, if you look around you, this is really no surprise. As our lifestyles become even more sedentary, and cheap, high calorie (and often tasty) foods are omnipresent, what else can we expect? Or perhaps it’s the 3,747 average calories we’re consuming per person (according to New Scientist) — that will pack on the pounds quickly!
The American mentality of instant gratification is also a huge factor. (And here I get on my soapbox.) We are taught from day one, that if we want something “we deserve it” (thanks to the marketing folks at L’oreal), and have to have it NOW (thanks Target). Whatever happened to saving up for something? Whatever happened to working for things? Whatever happened to anticipation? Why do we need so much stuff? And this goes for food too. Last year, when we were travelling through Sedona, we stopped at Taco Bell for a bean burrito, no cheese (vegan). Their new add campaign was something about a “fourth meal.” Sheesh!
But I have an easy weight-loss suggestion for the general population; eat vegan a few meals per week. Notice, I said vegan, not vegetarian. That’s because vegetarian often means “a non-meat based dish slathered in cheese.” And as good as “real” cheese tastes, it’s not likely to be part of a “reducing” diet, at least not in the quantities we typically consume. But overall, vegetables have fewer calories than meat.
Now, I’m not saying that simply eating vegan is the solution. We’ve found plenty of vegan junk food items out there. It’s also fairly easy to eat a “bad” vegan diet. Our personal experience — we notice we tend to gain a pound or three when Jane is baking more often, or when we’re eating a lot of vegan ice cream or snacks. But as we move away from processed foods and eat more plant based whole foods, we consume fewer calories, and that’s when the pounds come off, and it feels effortless.
- Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health – Newsletter
- Obesity Research Journal
- BMI Calculator – Adult; Child/Teen
- Veganism: A Weapon to Fight The Obesity Epidemic — John Livesey PhD, Scientific Officer, Department of Endocrinology, Christchurch Hospital, New Zealand