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Old 08-18-2011, 10:45 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by BendtheBar View Post
They have changed the standards several times.

I can't speak for average weightes because I do not have the statistics at hand, but I do know that the standards have changed several times making more people appear obese.
Irrespective of the standards changing, the average weight could in fact be a good measure. It would be interesting if some figures can be pulled up.

I find it difficult to believe that this is mere propaganda. Folks who were in their 20s in the 1950s (my grandfather for instance), hardly ever drove to buy groceries if the market was a few blocks away. They chose to walk. Today, I dont see to many folks walking. The world today is one where we are loathe to do any kind of physical activity. The percentage of folks with a desk job as opposed to more physical jobs are on the increase.

May be I am wrong, but it seems to me that with relatively crappier diet and less exercise it sounds logical that we will end up less healthy and overweight.
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Old 08-18-2011, 10:54 PM   #22
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Irrespective of the standards changing, the average weight could in fact be a good measure. It would be interesting if some figures can be pulled up.
I referenced the weight statistics in my previous post.

We are 8-10 pounds heavier than we were in 1970. We are also 10 years older on average. Combine this with changing standards...

I just also found this statistic from the CDC...the average height of males from 1960 to 2002 has increased from 5'8" to 5'9.5". So we are getting taller and older as a country, and this is contributing to some of the weight gain statistical changes - including teens. (teens are taller and because of this heavier)

The CDC also stated that weight increases changes during the last 40-50 years were also heavily age dependent...meaning 50-60 years olds gained a lot more weight than 20-30 year olds.

Understand I am not trying to push an opinion with these numbers. I am merely starting that the epidemic is overblown.

We are also more grain dependent and are being pushed a low fat, higher carb diet by our government. This surely isn't helping anything.

Here is more info on the McGovern Report, and our current focus on the low-fat, and in my opinion highly unhealthy, lifestyle:

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Old 08-18-2011, 11:14 PM   #23
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This is a severe oversimplification used just to prop up a belief system. It is also an ad hominem.

Using this logic and style of debate I could then say...You are an soulless socialist, therefore all your opinions are inherently misguided.



These people entered the game because of free will. Most leave this game equipped with a better understanding of nutrition, exercise and with an ability to see possibilities not seen before.

You are oversimplifying things here based on your bias and aren't willing to take a complete look at what is actually occurring.

The Biggest Loser is supportive but demanding. I've watched every season and most of the people are extremely supportive of one another, and the trainers are supportive of them.

You can take away the profit and capitalism, but you can't take away the nature of man. Even in an encouraging environment, in many ways like a forum, folks will still choose to bully, name call, demean, push dogma and exhibit all kinds of other sociopathic behavior.

I wish we could just gather all people together and sing kumbaya, smile, hug, encourage and have everything turn out like a pretty picture. But it never happens. It still always boils down to people looking in the mirror and having a willingness to fix themselves first. Many peopleWe are flawed, and require incentives to improve behavior and effort.

You create a system of sharing and the lazy and sociopathic 30% will ruin it for the others who are pulling their own weight. these people, just like lazy kids, need a kick in the pants or they will fail in life.

And I'll tell you want...the 30%...if you try to have leadership tell them what to do, they don't like it and attack the system...whatever that system is. They always place themselves above the system.
I have not seen any episodes of the American Biggest Loser show, so you're well ahead of me in terms of research.

If my comparison to capitalism is offensive, I am sorry.

In my country, after every season of TBL has been over for some months, there is always at least one story about contestants losing their new found physiques and reverting to old habits because:
1. they did not develop the discipline required to continue a healthy lifestyle
2. they did not learn sufficient healthy eating habits

Both of these aptitudes would require more time and effort being put into education and support, rather than focussing on dramatic weight loss.

I stopped watching the show after the first series. But I have noticed that the winner gets a lot of media coverage and a sponsorship deal or two. The rest of the group fade in obscurity and, sooner or later, many return to obesity.

Is one winner the best outcome? I would not have thought so.
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Old 08-18-2011, 11:32 PM   #24
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We are 8-10 pounds heavier than we were in 1970. We are also 10 years older on average. Combine this with changing standards...
8-10 lbs heavier for the general population? Or for a specific age group? He makes absolutely no mention of the age groups of the respondents in the gallup polls. In absence of this information, it makes no sense to add that hey we are also 10 years older. To bring in the increase in average age criterion, he has to clearly state / demonstrate that the age group of the respondents (as opposed to the general population) from 70s and 2000s has shifted upward significantly. I dont see that information stated anywhere unequivocally.

To illustrate what I mean a little more clearly, take the following study for instance - Increasing trends in incidence of overweight and o... [Am J Med. 2007] - PubMed result

The weight measurements over here were done for the 40-55 year age group. A study like this removes the average age increase bias, although, on the downside, it does become specific to a particular age group. Seems to me from the above study that over last 50 years, the average BMI has been going up.

Similarly, this one documented the changes for teens - Researchers see trend in teen weight gain since the 90?s

You could always bring up the point that BMI isnt a good indicator for all individuals, certainly not for athletes, but I doubt how much of these studies are actually done on athletic individuals. He cites Tim Tebow. To deal with such cases, we need a separate field in the polls to know how many of the respondents actually train, their BF% etc.

The major problem with the health industry is the huge amount of BS that flies around in the name of science and studies. There are just too many uncontrolled variables in these studies (including the ones I posted - I can easily see serious crap in there which negates sensible correlations) to come up with proper correlations. Most of these "studies" are pseduo-scientific with gaping holes in them. I would rather trust experience than many of these studies that clearly lack rigour.

That said BTB, you are more than a decade older than me and have been living here all your life (unlike myself, who has been in USA for about 5 years). From your experience, do YOU think the general population has been growing heavier? When you look at kids around you today, do you get the feeling that kids in your time were healthier?

From an Indian standpoint, I will definitely stay that the younger population in India has been growing more and more sedentary. Where sports formed the lifeblood for kids in my childhood, video games hold sway. And from what I notice, this affects the health too, with kids seemingly getting fatter.

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We are also more grain dependent and are being pushed a low fat, higher carb diet by our government. This surely isn't helping anything.
I agree with you 100% on this.

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Old 08-19-2011, 09:26 AM   #25
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All I know is that I travel in MD, VA, DC and to and from NY. People around here aren't doing marathons or much farm work. And I see really fat people everywhere I go. I see guys with big beer guts and women in large plus sizes.


That said, I agree that BMI is BS and that "ideal weights" are insane. My ideal weight is probably somewhere around 175/180 pounds. No thanks.
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Old 08-19-2011, 09:39 AM   #26
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They have changed the standards several times.

I can't speak for average weightes because I do not have the statistics at hand, but I do know that the standards have changed several times making more people appear obese.

Off topic...

When I was in health care a few years back they changes the high blood pressure standards, lowering them by 10 points. More people were referred to their doctors about possible medications.
When I was at the height of my fitest level, as shown in the pic with the conditioning workout (BtB will understand that and be able to relate), I was astounded that I needed a large zipper top whereas I take a 13-14 y/o boys tracksuit bottoms, teenage size denim jackets, and wear a snake belt (which are only made for kiddies)...the fact that I required a large top as opposed to a small or even medium size made me sit and consider how big the average sized female was being made to feel; and I remember remarking about it to hubby at the time.

So, yep, I'd have to say that sizes are being altered along with other stats which probably never needed any altering to start with.
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Old 08-19-2011, 09:41 AM   #27
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From a survival standpoint, single digit fat % didn't bode well through most of human history. One famine and its over. While I won't argue that there are a lot of fat people hogging the aisles in the grocery store on their immobility scooters, having enough reserves to last a few weeks makes more sense in my mind for survival. There's a balance in there somewhere.

For training the morbidly obese, I'm a big fan of
1: Drastic changes in diet - no starvation, but if you have more than 100#s of fat to lose, lose it. The body will prefer it over muscle for a while if some moderate exercise is going on.
2: Low impact exercise - 500#ers have no business running on pavement. Walking, swimming, thats great. Make em walk uphill for added intensity. Destroying joints isnt so awesome.

This worked for me to drop 140#s in just over a year. Anecdotal evidence certainly, but I was your standard lardly american. I'm still overweight, but very healthy according to the bloodwork, and can enjoy myself outdoors again. Once I was below 300, all kinds of activities opened up to me, and I'm never going back. If people choose to go back to that, its a defect in their character, not anyone else's fault.
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Old 08-19-2011, 09:56 AM   #28
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8-10 lbs heavier for the general population? Or for a specific age group? He makes absolutely no mention of the age groups of the respondents in the gallup polls. In absence of this information, it makes no sense to add that hey we are also 10 years older. To bring in the increase in average age criterion, he has to clearly state / demonstrate that the age group of the respondents (as opposed to the general population) from 70s and 2000s has shifted upward significantly. I dont see that information stated anywhere unequivocally.
8-10 pounds per person. I found this statistic in an article that was referencing CDC data.

On average as a culture we are 10 years older per person that we were in 1960 (or 1970) I forgot which it is. In fact, the average median age of the USA is at its highest point ever.

U.S. Median Age Highest Ever

The 2010 numbers are:

36.8 years (male: 35.5 years, female: 38.1 years, 2010 est.)

In 1990 the median age was 32.9 years.

In 1950 about 30% of the population was under 18. Currently 24.3% are under 18.

What should be considered here is not just the weight of "older folks", but also how this median age sways the average weight due to the younger folks.

Young children progress in weight very rapidly, and as the median age of a culture increases, this younger end of the scale will have a great impact on weight averages.

There are fewer kids and more adults. This isn't weight gain per say, but rather a shift in age demographics resulting in an apparent weight gain if one does not analyze the statistics.

Again, I am not stating people aren't getting fatter. What I am saying is that in concert with changing standards and a look at the statistics and demographics, the rate isn't alarming nor epidemic.
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Old 08-19-2011, 12:57 PM   #29
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That made me chuckle.
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Old 08-19-2011, 01:00 PM   #30
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My kids' doctor told me to not give my kids milk because "Milk makes kids fat."
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