Friday, August 31, 2012

Fat and Health Are Related

I think she means well, but fat and health are related. That for me is a reality as I have expounded on this blog so long. What do you do when the obesity co-morbs pile up to the ceiling? You can't say, that the weight does not affect the health. I am dealing with two recent fat-related issues, one is a umbilical hernia, which is not at a point I need surgery, no pain and not pushing out too far, but which exists, and dealing with pressure sores and sitting issues, I only can sit up for only so long but have realized I have to find a chair that works for me the right way and so many do not. How can fat [and yes lets take the value judgments out of it, who would CHOOSE this?] not be related? It is a health issue, it is related. She is right about the neglect of mental health issues, what will all the fat abuse do but destroy fat people's mental health? I agree with her about the shaming problem and the ableism and the fact unhealthy people such as myself need to be treated well.

Agree with this part.

But fat and health? Well to me the two are so intertwined.........

She wanted feedback, going to send her my blog link and a letter....

Friday, August 24, 2012

Disability Advocacy Seminar

I made it yesterday to a local disability advocacy seminar, I do think they had many good things to share, some was about the nuts and bolts of advocacy and what works out there in disability advocacy land. I think it is good to look at one's community and ask what would be somethings that can be done to bring the disabled together in help and support and in protecting them?  One good thing about the community here is they do have a local disability support organization where I have met the director a few times. I do have multiple disabilites, most of which are mentioned on this blog, but I must not only adapt to living as a very supersized woman but also must deal with severe hearing impairment.

More work definitely needs to be done on integrating those with physical and mental disabilities into their respective communities. One of the advocates talked about a wheelchair bound man who was forced to crawl up the stairs to get into a courthouse as required by a malicious judge, and that ensuing lawsuit changed many things. I feel for those who are wheelchair bound in that, even being unable to do more then a few stairs, my bad balance affects this too, I have found myself barred from many local activities, including an improv my husband invited me too. We even drove to the older building to see if I could get in there and when I saw the steep wide stairs, I knew I would not be able to go up them safely.  My husband understands, he has had years of dealing with with what I face. Many things had to be changed to help the wheelchair bound and other mobility impaired to have access and there is STILL a LONG WAY TO GO. 

They talked about persistence counting when it came to advocacy work. I had written a local discount grocer asking if they would get a scooter, and realized while I did not get a response back, realize I need to stay persistent and not give up. Even advocating for myself to get a hearing aid, took me over a year. "Don't give up" should be the disabled person's mantra. They talked about the best way to couch things to people. I know on my blog, I do get a bit outspoken here, and I probably do have some unpopular opinions but in life, I've had success influencing people to see where I am coming from. The advocate, said, try and understand where they are coming from. I know one barrier to disability changes, is cold hard CASH. Many small business owners and others, probably even would like to make changes, but may not always be able to afford these things. Here too, barriers in employment were discussed.

I told the group I am NOT healthy enough to attempt work now, especially with my breathing difficulties and COPD, but talked about my own sojourns in Vocational Rehab and even attempting to change my career from teaching to being a paralegal where I got too sick to continue. One huge issue for many participants was feeling cut out of the work place and feeling that employers were not giving them fair shakes. While there is some realism to be faced, such as blindness or even deafness affecting jobs [I can't hear perfectly even with a hearing aid], this is something disabled people are facing. The workworld is tough now even on those who are older or who face minor health problems. The advocates did emphasize a person selling themselves on skills and making sure not to make the disability the central focus at a job interview.

There was discussion of invisible disabilities [I have some of those] and trying to get to a better place of functioning and finding mutual support in the disability community. One advocate discussed the different personalities using the DISC personality grid, and the difference between being non-assertive, aggressive and the more positive assertive. All interesting to things to hear about. That is definitely one thing, that people do have to learn to be assertive especially in this world if you face disabilities and hardships, getting people on your team is important. There were members of my local self help and depression group there, too who came to support and talk about those who face mental disabilities and advocate for them.

Overall it was a very positive experience, and I am interested in getting more involved in my community as much as my health allows in helping disabled people as well as myself and others I care about. I did tell them I have a special interest in helping people of size especially those who face supersized obesity.

I really do hate jeans

"I hate jeans"

"George F. Will: I hate Jeans"

I was just told I made a "sizeist" on a fat acceptance website, for writing that I think jeans are not flattering on fat women over size 18. Hey it's an opinion no one has to agree with it. It is not against the fat women themselves but the look they insist on dressing everyone in, even the thin people. I have to admit, I am not always the most PC person. I didn't mean to hurt anyone's feelings, but well read on and hopefully you will understand more of what I meant....

How do they not know in my mind, I am thinking, I wish plus sized women had better options to dress and maybe I long for the days where there WAS variety in fashion. It's strange because whatever happened to freedom of speech? My friends thin and fat, know I hate jeans, and yes many of them DO WEAR jeans. Hey, if they are comfortable, and that's okay for them, so be it.

I spent so many of my teen years with my own mid-sized body squeezed into jeans, with very few options to wear anything else, perhaps I wrote that remembering the feeling of unease, of my large body poured into the worse clothing item anyone could have designed for a fat person. I remember putting on the tight, hot and thick denim pants getting a work out every morning in getting them on and wishing for skirts and dresses. In the 1980s too was the tyranny of the Jordache and other designer jeans and it was "in" for people to wear them as tight as possible. I wonder how life could have been dressed in beautiful clothes instead of one's that made me uncomfortable? Ok maybe I am a bit of a clothes snob, but I remember wondering why I had to dress just like my brother for so many years. Even to get flat shoes, that were not the proverbial boring "white sneakers" took some arguments on my part.

The worse things about jeans are how unforgiving they were. Gain 10lbs and they do not fit right. Get a bit swelled up, and they are tight. In a way being forced to wear jeans instead of more flattering clothing as a young person left me more vulnerable, every figure flaw on full display and oddly in my junior high and high school with the strange rules, that our shirts be tucked in and no jackets or cardigans worn in the classroom which meant my very large pear shape was even more emphasized. There was little modesty in that formula. For some reason, my mother did not let me wear dresses or more feminine fashions, except for special events, where the once a year or so dress for the wedding always had to have the nylons with it, so day to day, I was stuck in sweaters, t-shirts and jeans. When I left the house, and started buying my own clothes, I made the transition to knit pants and then to wearing dresses the majority of the time. The last year I wore a pair of jeans was 1992, once I was out of the house, I ditched them all.

I never felt "right" in jeans. My body is extremely pear shaped, my waist runs 20 inches under the hips even now, and always the hips were tight while the waist was looser, I felt like I was being forced to dress like everyone else, when my body was NOT like everyone else's. I was left vulnerable with my very large butt on display like a beacon, which actually I think I figured out why so many of that insults in junior high and high school focused on that one area of my body. Today even if I wanted to wear jeans, I could not. They do not make them in my size.

I think fat women now, try to dress too much like thin women, instead of choosing fashions that are FLATTERING, COMFORTABLE and make them feel good.  I see way too many fat women, literally POURED into tight fitting jeans. Sorry if someone thinks I am being fat hating to say that does not look good. They are trying to be something they are not, and most of them DO look UNCOMFORTABLE. One thing about me, I break endless fashion rules but I'd rather see people break them on the side of feeling better about themselves rather then CONFORMITY!

Often even finding nice clothes that flatter for fat people is hard, but how many people are wearing jeans now because there is little else out there on the market. I remember the older days where there was fun to fashion, and different styles and nothing has changed since the 1990s. Can you even name a style to the 00s? I sure can't. It's like creativity died in America and conformity became the rule. To me, the wearing of jeans is a sign of this insisted upon new thing that everyone must look like everyone else.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Are Antibiotics Making Us Fat?

Antibiotics fuel obesity by creating microbe upheavals

We aren’t single individuals, but colonies of trillions. Our bodies, and our guts in particular, are home to vast swarms of bacteria and other microbes. This “microbiota” helps us to harvest energy from our food by breaking down the complex molecules that our own cells cannot cope with. They build vitamins that we cannot manufacture. They ‘talk to’ our immune system to ensure that it develops correctly, and they prevent invasions from other more harmful microbes. They’re our partners in life.

What happens when we kill them?

Farmers have been doing that experiment in animals for more than 50 years. By feeding low doses of antibiotics to healthy farm animals, they’ve found that they could fatten up their livestock by as much as 15 percent. You can put the antibiotics in their feed or in their water. You can give the drugs to cows, sheep, pigs or chickens. You can try penicillins, or tetracyclines, or many other classes of antibiotics. The effect is the same: more weight.

Consistent though this effect is, no one really understands why it works. The safe bet is that the drugs are exerting their influence by killing off some of the microbiota. Now, Ilseung Cho from the New York University School of Medicine has confirmed that hypothesis. By feeding antibiotics to young mice, he has shown that the drugs drastically change the microscopic communities within their guts, and increase the amount of calories they harvest from food. The result: they became fatter.

Cho exposed young mice to a range of different antibiotics including penicillin, vancomycin, the two together, or chlortetracycline, all at levels that the US Food and Drug Administration approves for use in agriculture. After 7 weeks, the treated mice were no heavier than those that didn’t drink any drugs, but they had more body fat – around 23 percent, compared to a typical 20 percent.

Personally interesting to me, as my chronic bronchitis in my 20s meant a lot of time on antibiotics. I even have had bronchitis this week from a very bad cold. It was chose to go on antibiotics or end up in the hospital, I was coughing up colored phlegm. I tried to delay as long as I could but didn't have many options, this was the first time I had been on antibiotics in a year. I am glad they are studying some of these issues. Obviously finding out that ranchers use antibiotics to fatten up livestock, is pretty disgusting, one wonders how far greed will out weight common sense in this country.

This one is a hard one to deal with. I could have been playing with pneumonia if I didn't take an antibiotic on this go around, obviously I've had my life saved from antibiotics with my horrible infections, but I think the science here has a lot of truth, what is it doing to the gut flora and the utilization of our calories?

Why Are They Making Cars So MUCH SMALLER?

I have a van where I fit in it okay but the room in new cars is smaller and smaller where someone even in the 200s would have a hard time getting into the car. I see newer cars in parking lots and the seats and doors are so small it looks like only people under 100lbs would even fit. This worries me for the future, I do not see me even fitting in these cars comfortably as a passenger. One thing I have noticed in cars is far less leg room, there is always something pressing or cutting into my legs, in the front seat or back seat, with giant consoles taking up all the room.

Are Americans Too Big To Drive Small?

Read this report, there is a guy who is around 240lbs complaining of all the problems of fitting, what about supersized fat people?

Consumer Reports: The Best Cars for Plus Sized People

I'm poor so I am not in a market for a new car. I dare say none of them will be useable they are making all the interiors smaller and smaller. I always wondered why larger cars for bigger people were never marketed. It seems weird. I have noticed this, are all the designers wealthy and lithe thin? It makes you wonder.  

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Programmed to Be Fat! Man Made Chemicals Are Making Us Fatter!

Programmed to Be Fat

second link here too:

Programmed to Be Fat?

But a small group of scientists have begun looking beyond the obvious because of a group that can’t chew, let alone jog: infant obesity rose more than 70 per cent in just 20 years. You can’t blame them for unhealthy lifestyles. The scientists suspect that, starting in the womb, man-made chemicals may be triggering changes to our metabolism that result in life-long weight gain.

Programmed to be Fat? tells the stories of three scientists whose unexpected findings led them to follow the research of a curious doctor in Scotland, baffled by her inability to lose weight. For three years she pored over existing research on environmental chemicals and finally published a key study in an alternative medicine journal. It linked endocrine-disrupting chemicals to the obesity epidemic. The scientists came across the paper while puzzling over their own research results. None of their studies were about fat, but they had two things in common – they were all researching endocrine-disrupting chemicals, and they all ended up with unusually heavy lab animals.

Check out the comments on this one, some very interesting points I have been making for years on this blog.
What serves corporate interests better than expanding market share by chemically arranging for appetites and waists to swell and metabolisms and built-in safeguards to malfunction?

Are there still people who believe that the obesity epidemic and contributing endocrine disruptors just "happened"? That they "happened" to take place during the period in which checks and balances on corporate abuses of consumer trust were progressively gutted or removed entirely?

And now, after the epidemic has caused so much personal distress, Science has finally, miraculously uncovered the biochemical mechanisms responsible — as though environmentalists had not been warning us about them for decades?

There's an alternative approach to waiting for belated scientific revelations: Don't eat "edible food-like substances" (Michael Pollan) that corporations have been pushing and propagandizing. Don't accept that your food and drink must be packaged in ways that put cost reduction first and consider long-term health and environmental consequences last.


EA Helwick:

"Yes, the endocrine disruptors are playing a major role in the obesity epidemic by mimicking thyroid and gloming to the receptors thus preventing the normal T3 connection. Certain chemicals that accumulate in babies are creating oxidative phosphorlation, which is causing mitochondria dysfunction. Several key satiety hormones are also being turned off thus leaving on the urge to consume more food. It's not the food guys, but rather what's in the food and water we are consuming.

I am the co-author of a groundbreaking book due out mid 2012 that turns conventional wisdom completely upside down when it comes to obesity, diabetes-2, insulin resistance, and metabolic syndrome. And yes, the need to move away from highly sprayed and treated fruits and vegetables with pesticides represents ground zero. We are rapidly approaching the point where we cannot afford not to bite the bullet and shift to organic foods. And yes, new borns who are feeding off mom's fat reserves have at least 300 known toxic chemicals in their body at the time of birth, which play an important role in altering the expression of various genes (epigenetics)."

I had major chemical exposure, cleaning jobs, work in factories around printing and manufacturing of plastics, and I was an art teacher, that was around oil paint, paint thinner and clays. I believe everyone however in general is being exposed to major toxins and endocrine disruptors and these scientists are on to something.
Look, we are being lied too about the calories in, calories out thing, something more is going on. I am glad there are some honest researchers out there.

Among diabetes patients, the obese outlive the trim

Among diabetes patients, the obese outlive the trim

I am not sure what to make of this study. I always used to hear from a very fat friend that diabetics as they grew more severe LOST WEIGHT. She would tell me, that she saw 500lb people whittle down to very small weights just due to the ravages of diabetes. She knew one brittle diabetic who could barely keep weight on his body. I wasn't sure what to make of that. I wonder if you live long enough with diabetes if it will make you lose weight just due to health. It does seem some diabetes illnesses do make you lose weight in the severe categories as opposed to the insulin resistant-gain weight category. It's a hard one to fathom.

I've been a diabetic for 12 years, My A1C ran around 6.6 this time around. I sometimes do not understand the trajectory of this disease, such as what will I suffer even having kept the sugars in the controlled arena for the last 12 years? They've been controlled except outside of one 4 month period, where I had to add Januvia to the party. I was on Metformin even while just PRE-DIABETIC for the treatment of PCOS. I can still feel my feet and toes. Any diabetics of long duration want to chime in?

Bras Should Go the Way of Corsets

Over at the living at 400lbs blog, she discusses finding a bra, and one's that are taken off the market and trying to find new ones. I relate, as the bras I always founded and fit, would crumble or be impossible to find at a future date.

Death of a Bra

I hate bras. I can understand a well-endowed woman wearing one for various reasons, but I have not worn a bra since the late 90s when I had my weight gain. To me, the height of absurdity was bounding up my breasts while I had fat rolls that stuck out way past my bosom. I am definitely very-pear shaped. I do tend to wear sweater sets and double layers, for modesty sake. Bras to me were so uncomfortable, even though I used sports bras in my midsized years, I remember the horrible, chafing, the rashes, the straps that always cut into my shoulders and I thought why do it anymore? The bras never fit either in the cups or elsewhere. They were expensive, they wore out. I am not even sure I could hook a bra nowadays. The last bra size I wore was 43 B, this was before the major weight gain.

So I set myself free. I stopped wearing them somewhere around 1995 or so. I would put on undershirts, to get by when I was still working. Depending on the outfit this isn't always needed. I wished the bras had stayed burned in the 1960s, what happened with that? Bras should go the way of corsets. I even wonder if bras have led to more breast cancer blocking the lymph system. So have other people.

Now I am relatively flat chested so maybe this decision was made easier. They also do not make a size 56 B bra. [I am smaller on top then on the bottom]. So today, wearing a bra is NOT an OPTION anyway, and by the way, at the height of my weight that measurement was even higher but the breasts stayed around a B. This is something I was happy to let go of. If you are reading this, and are a fat woman wearing a bra. Ask yourself if it really helps you, in some cases, they may, but if you can walk away from wearing one, ponder that too. Some probably will be shocked thinking I am flouting societal conventions, but I do not believe in doing that what makes no sense.

Slower Growth Seen In Infants Born To Overweight Mothers

Slower Growth Seen In Infants Born To Overweight Mothers

This study bugs me because they conclude it's the obesity epidemic, rather then going to the root of the problem, which definitely has something to do with the endocrine/hormonal system! They also seem to have the study bias of blaming the fat mother! I know I am not a scientist but I can tell with this particular study they need to dig deeper.
After combing the literature for an explanation, Larson Ode and researchers at the University of Minnesota who assisted in the study think there are two reasons why babies of overweight or obese women lag initially in their physical development. The first deals with inflammation: fat cells that normally help suppress a person's immune system flare up when an adult is overweight, studies have shown. The researchers believes this state of warfare being waged in an overweight/obese pregnant mother's immune system may also inflame the fetus's developing immune system, diverting energy that otherwise would go to the baby's development.

"These (fat tissue-derived) hormones and inflammatory factors tend to have appetite/satiety regulating effects early on, and may exert their negative effects on growth both during gestation and through passage into the breast milk during postnatal development as well," says Ellen Demerath, Larson Ode's advisor at Minnesota and senior author on the paper.

The second cause has to do with how babies grow in the womb. One is through free fatty acids delivered by the mother via a growth hormone called IGF-1. The other is through a growth hormone secreted by the pituitary gland in the baby's brain. The researchers think the cosseted baby is getting so many free fatty acid-derived growth hormones from its overweight mother that the other growth generator - the pituitary gland - slows its production.

Consider what they come up with here, fat mother automatically means more fatty acids?

I have noticed on my own labs that my growth hormone has been LOW for years. Every adult has a set amount. In my case it is not severe enough to warrant meds, well as far as I know...but folks here know I talk about the interchange of the obesity epidemic and outside factors affecting hormonal and endocrine systems. If the adults are low...why wouldn't the children be?

Also why don't they ever question what came first?

The fat or the inflammation. They always assume it's the other way around....

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Bobby Hill on Being Fat

I'd rather a fat kid feel like this, while whatever given whatever sane and reasonable options to remain as healthy he can be, then walking around hating himself like so many fat kids are told to do.
Don't forget a lot of the fat kids, aren't even in the ranks of the very obese when they start getting discriminated against and earn ire from others. It can be a matter of 20-30lbs.

Fat People Don't Need To Be Punished

Fat People Don't Need to be Punished.

Punishing fat people comes out of a society stuck on stupid, and trying to kick those who are down. Adding on to the stigma, discrimination and more is failing and in many ways has added to the problem. If some of these right wing "You Choose to be fat" myth makers add on to the financial burden of fat people all they will is make them fatter due to lower funds, and more stress. This article has good points but I also worry about the nanny government that would want to foist more exercise on people...[no cars allowed in the city, you must walk 1 mile between bus stops] Some businesses have even started this horrible trend to keep the serfs standing all day, at their desks instead of sitting. Anyone who has ever worked an on your feet job, knows those break break down your health and feet too. Overall I think the writer means well and I agree.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Study: We Believe We're Losing Weight When We're Actually Gaining

Study: We Believe We're Losing Weight When We're Actually Gaining

Hey why wouldn't we? They tell us less food and all this means weight loss, but often it's a joke! How about this scientists? We are told one thing while the body does another?

IMPLICATIONS: "We didn't have the ability to look specifically at the reasons driving these discrepancies," said Dr. Catherine Wetmore, the lead author of the study. "Certainly vanity or optimism could be one, or it could be a real true lack of awareness about what is happening." Regardless of why this is happening, it's clear that the first step in fighting obesity is acceptance. If we believe we're losing weight when we actually aren't, our further health behaviors will be misinformed and potentially harmful.

I think the problem is, all the good behaviors in the world aren't changing the fat and people are being told things, THAT DO NOT WORK IN THE REAL WORLD.