Many fat people are told by healthcare professionals that we have to lose weight because we are going to die by 30 – by 40 – by 50.
I mean, everyone knows there are no old fat people, right?
If there is no one else in your circle of family and friends who is old and fat, you now know of at least one fat old person.
Yesterday, I turned 65 years old.
By society’s (and the government’s) standards, I am now officially old.
And, I have been fat basically my entire life.
How can this be?
Well, let me tell you a few things:
First. There have always been fat people.
People come in all sizes, shapes and colors and always have.
It’s called diversity and it’s natural.
Second. Fat does not necessarily equal unhealthy.
There are fat people who are perfectly healthy at the weight they are. For many, many years, I was that fatty. Someone lucky enough to have genes that allowed me to be fat but not suffer from (what they call) metabolic syndrome. My blood pressure was fine, my cholesterol levels were terrific, and my blood glucose numbers were just fine.
Second, while fat people are at a higher risk of certain health issues, science now tells us that fat people also have a lower risk of death from most of those conditions.
They call that the “obesity paradox”, and the list of medical conditions where fat is protective and/or a survival benefit seems to get longer every day.
Personally, I believe this is evolution in action. Yes, fat people have a higher risk for these conditions but our bodies are able to deal with those conditions better than our non-fat peers. Our bodies have adapted.
Now in my “golden” years, I do have diabetes (it runs in both sides of my family – no surprise, I would eventually develop it) – but it is well and easily controlled with drugs. My blood pressure runs from normal to high normal. My doctor insists I take (very low doses of) blood pressure medication as a preventative measure. My doctor also insisted I take (very low doses of) cholesterol meds even though my cholesterol numbers were terrific – and now they are so low that I am wondering if there is such a thing as too low. I told my doctor last time, and she still thinks that it is a good preventative measure – but now I take ½ as much of the already very low dose. And I’ve had a couple of EKGs, and my heart is just fine.
Will I live forever?
Of course not.
But neither will you – or anyone else.
All I’m saying is fat people get old.
Fat people live long and productive lives.
And when you hear your doctor lie to you, year after year, about how you will soon be dead because you are fat, is it any surprise that you stop believing anything doctors tell you?
We’re fat. Not stupid.