Fat and Sassy

my views on being larger than life.

Science roundup wed February 17, 2010


Found some interesting articles…none really need much commentary, so ill do a blurb and a link today:

Diabetes and impluse control.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/02/100210194404.htm – Apparently people with type 2 diabetes have poor impulse control.  I have a few issues with it…..first there ws only about 37 folks studied, hardly a “diverse” or representative group….secondly, the study, being done in Japan, had a very narrow (Asian) test group.  I disagree with the methodology in this study (testing whether I push a button or not has very little to do with when i will eat a cupcake) But it is an interesting point, and the article seems careful to not called people lazy or stupid or lacking willpower.   Choice quote: “This suggests the possibility that the neuropsychological deficits in response inhibition may contribute to the behavioral problems leading to chronic lifestyle-related diseases, such as type 2 diabetes” 

PCOS and fatty tissue

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/02/100202101253.htm  the headline reads “Fat Behaves Differently in Patients With Polycistic Ovary Syndrome”…and what they find is “Fat tissue in women with polycystic ovary syndrome produces an inadequate amount of the hormone that regulates how fats and glucose are processed, promoting increased insulin resistance and inflammation, glucose intolerance, and greater risk of diabetes and heart disease, according to a study conducted at the Center for Androgen-Related Research and Discovery at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center.”    In other words, PCOS patients don’t produce enough of the stuff that reduces inflammation (according to MEME Roth one of the “causes” of overfatness) AND the same hormone regulates insulin.   Insulin, you will remember regulates sugar processing.   researchers DID find that the fat tissue acted the same for fat and skinny PCOS patients, so for once this is NOT getting blamed on fatty fatty 2×4.

(Weight loss) drugs are bad…..mmmkaaaay?

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20100212/hl_nm/us_hydroxycut_liver  We all remember hydroxcut….pretty fat model gets to be hot/crazy/but SKINNY model.  It was pulled from the market a while ago amid liver damage allegations.   “Looking at factors like patients’ risk factors for liver disease and the timing of their Hydroxycut use, the researchers found that for eight of the liver-damage cases, there was a greater than 95 percent likelihood that the weight-loss aid was to blame.”   and this is out of 18 NEW cases that thee FDA never heard about.    Personally I don’t belive in weight loss drugs…they are either outright fakes, bad speed, or huge dose of diuretics or laxatives….most if not all are untested on humans or can’t stand up to the trials of the FDA approval process.  IF a weight loss pill worked, do you really think BIg Pharma and the medical industry in general would REALLY not make a buck off it?   they would slap millions in front of the inventor and suck up that patent lickety split.

 

 

Exersize doesnt amp up teens metabolism either


im busy tonight chickadees and have written 4 posts today already….but check out this from yahoo health news…….apparently exersize doesn’t make you lose weight….here is the link followed by some choice quotes. (for once it requires very little mocking)

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20100216/hl_nm/us_exercise_metabolism

“A few months of moderate aerobic exercise may not rev up obese teenagers’ ability to burn calories, even though it may increase thinner teens’ ability to burn dietary fat, new research suggests”

“obese teenagers can get “important health benefits” from aerobic exercise even without changes in their calorie and fat metabolism” (HAES anyone?)

“It’s a common perception that exercise not only burns calories during the workout, but also leads to lasting changes in a person’s metabolism at rest. However, studies suggest that any effects may depend on the type and intensity of exercise, and on a person’s body composition.”

 

Welcome to the matrix February 15, 2010


Some important online links for ya today.  enjoy the interwebs matrix roundup for the month of feb.

the FFF is online now!

Well, there is a new blogroll/voltron blog in town.   thats right we ARE the Home of the Nouveau-bese.   check us out at www.fiercefatties.wordpress.com.  Got a great bunch of folks onboard, hitting just about every group we can in the fatospere…..we got the token male….the “skinny” fatty….the eating disorder genius (thats me)…the newbie fatty…..the ethnic fattie…older fattie….younger fatties……college educated and not….. you get the drift….10 fabulous takes on FA and how we cope with being fat and loving it in a skinny world.  In the words of our fearless “leader”  Atchka we “We’re an open-minded, friendly sort of community that welcomes disagreement, dissent, and diet-talk (with ample trigger warnings). We aren’t promoting dieting, but we acknowledge that Fat Acceptance should include people at all stages of the journey, even those who have not yet internalized the failure rate of dieting.”  yea that about sums it up.  

Ask me anything i DARE you.

 And don’t forget about my formspring at http://www.formspring.me/fatandsassy .  Ask me anything I promise I will answer.  some goodies from the last week:

If you could only present one fact about the current War on Obesity to the country, something that you think would make more Americans less assholish toward fat people, what would it be? by atchka

The study done at UCLA showing that diets don’t work in the long term. THIS was the wake up call I had that made me realize I was being crazy, repeating the same behaviors over and over again….dieting over and over again, expecting it to work THIS time. It was this study that started me on my TRUE recovery from bulimia, the ultimate weight loss roller coaster.

This meta study looked at 31 long-term weight loss studies over the course of 5 years. they found at LEAST 2/3 of diets fail, and that was with studies with self reporting (of COURSE we say we lose more than we did) and low follow-up (around 50%…wanna bet the people who lost weight were the ones that reported?) which HAD to have skewed results. In fact “one of the best predictors of weight gain over the four years was having lost weight on a diet at some point during the years before the study started,”. THAT is what i want people to understand. so we are fat….so it may be bad for us….

but DIETS DONT WORK.

so now what do we do? force fatties into concentration camps? (call them boot camps and sell it to us for 5k a week!) KIll us all? Or just scapegoat the worlds problems onto us.

How are you so awesome?

luck and skill. and a large dose of Phish and MST3K…and books…..LOTS of books.

Bored?  love websites?

Check out my stumbleupon page at http://www.stumbleupon.com/stumbler/Erylinn/ .   For those that don’t know what stumbleupon is , i will use their own words:

StumbleUpon helps you discover and share great websites. As you click Stumble!, we deliver high-quality pages matched to your personal preferences. These pages have been explicitly recommended by your friends or one of 8 million+ other websurfers with interests similar to you. Rating these sites you like () automatically shares them with like-minded people – and helps you discover great sites your friends recommend. 

StumbleUpon uses / ratings to form collaborative opinions on website quality. When you stumble, you will only see pages that friends and like-minded stumblers () have recommended. This helps you discover great content you probably wouldn’t find using a search engine.

Searching vs. Stumbling:

Using search engines to locate relevant content typically means hunting through pages of results. Rather than searching for quality web sites, StumbleUpon members are taken directly to web sites matching their personal interests and preferences.

Sounds dry and techincal….its actually the most amazing thing I have ever played with.   I see new stuff there every time I hit stumble…in fact it is what ultimately led me to fa, by stumbling a post on shapely prose (http://kateharding.net/)  I know it requires a toolbar to be installed to stumble but its actually functional (i usually hate toolbars and wont install them.)

 

Paul Campos is my new God February 6, 2010


Just a quick quote for today.  but its a good one and it bears repeating…and repeating…and putting on posters to hand to people who tell you “but you should lose weight for your health….”   and as a sticker to put on every weight loss ad you see.   I need to make some…like a warning sticker…something you could stick on magazines at doctors offices….and bigger ones for posters…..I know i would buy some FA stickers that are like the smokers warning labels but have fat acceptance facts from studies.  stuff like “95% of diets fail within 2 years” or “dieting makes you fat” or something…but i digress as usual, gogo ADHD.   Anyway onto the quote…..I know I need to remind myself (sometimes daily) the futility of dieting and trying to change my weight…its so easy to go back to what doesn’t work but society is trying to sell you…..

This is from Paul Campos, who first started researching fat and its role in society when studying the Monica Lewisnski scandal.  It is taken from the Fat and Identity Politics: Lecture from the recent UCLA lectures.  He is a professor of law at the University of Colorado and author of “The Obesity Myth: Why America’s Obsession With Weight Is Hazardous to Your Health.”

“…this is the part that never ever gets acknowledged by people who know better, even though they will acknowledge it and then renounce that they have acknowledged it moments later. We can’t make people thin, okay? There’s no empirical proposition in medicine that is better established than this. There is no known way to produce significant long-term weight loss in a stastically significant population. We just don’t know how to do it. And that includes weight loss surgery or stomach amputation. That does not produce significant long-term weight loss among most people who undergo it. Certainly what absolutely fails completely in terms of significant long-term weight loss is haraunging people about their weight. And telling them that if they ate right and exercised more they would be thin. For vast majority of people that description is a complete failure. It’s hopefully relatively rare in medicine, in particular, and social policy in general, to keep pursuing an intervention which is demonstrably a failure over and over again. Now I’m sure many of you are familiar with the definition of insanity, it’s doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. That’s just another word for dieting.”
 

So it IS genetic after all. – quick hit. February 4, 2010


http://news.yahoo.com/s/hsn/20100204/hl_hsn/veryobesepeoplemaybemissinggenes

“Adding more evidence to theories linking DNA to weight, European scientists report that a genetic variation seems to virtually guarantee that a person will become obese.”   i love it when an article opens like that……in the clamor that is LOSE WIEGHT  FATTY or you will DIIIEEEEEE rhetoric that passes for news, today’s article was refreshing.   According to the article, this study was the first of its kind in “proving” that weight has a genetic component.   They studied the genomes of over 16,000, and found 19 had a genetic abnormality, and all of the 19 were obese. 

“We feel that this is a major advance — the first paper to convincingly demonstrate that a relatively rare genetic variant can also be an important cause of common obesity,” said study co-author Alexandra Blakemore, a senior lecturer at Imperial College London.”Although the percentage of severely obese people with this (variation) is just under one person, that adds up to an awful lot of people in total,” Blakemore said. “The effect on carriers is very strong.””

So there we have it….some of the first hard evidence of a genetic component to obesity….i wonder how long it will be before they find all the genetic causes, and then try to change THEM, for our own good you see, because we shouldnt be fat, even if it’s in our GENES!  The article DOES admit “Not all obese people can get skinnier by eating less and exercising more, Weiss said. “The bottom line is that they may be able to eat less, but their bodies may be so efficient that they can extract calories from food much more effectively and may not be burning energy as efficiently as others,” he said.”  

It goes on to say that “This fact leads to unhappy news for some obese people, he said. “If you’re eating just one pea and you’re gaining weight, you’ll have to cut the pea in half.” WTF….i’m supposed to eat half a pea now, even though my genes make me fat….I think he’s missing it entirely…./headdesk.  Some people are genetically predisposed to be fat….they DO reach a homeostasis (trust me i can eat whatever the fuck i want and i wont go over 330….but i can starve myself and never get below 280)  and eating half a pea a day and exercising for 8 hours on top of it wont keep it off for long….sure you can lose 80-100 lbs on the biggest loser, but lets see you keep it up without condemning yourself to running marathons on 1200 calories a day.  Or keep it off for 5 years.  95% of diets fail.  period.  and they do so because, as we are now discovering, study by study, comparing everything from genomes to twins that it is genetic.

 

Teen grows, gains weight…..obesity “crisis” raises February 2, 2010


I ran across this article http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100201/ap_on_he_me/us_med_fighting_obesity about a 14-year-old, Paris,  who is in danger of getting obese….shes not even that chunky….just in DANGER of getting fat. “Paris’ pediatrician urged her to take part in an intensive experiment. The goal? To see if a yearlong program of weekly sessions with a nutritionist, exercise trainer and doctor, all preaching major lifestyle changes, could keep the 14-year-old from becoming obese.”  just IN DANGER of….and for this she goes to weekly nutritionist meetings, exercise trainers and doctors…ALL of who are telling her shes fat.  “It’s the kind of intensive help that the influential U.S. Preventive Services Task Force said last month can work for teens.”   Keep in mind this is a girl who developed early and is on the swim team….ALREADY an athlete with swimmers shoulders, so it’s not like she isn’t active, perhaps (despite her curves, even fit?) And she is 14 years old. FOURTEEN. YEARS. OLD.  aka a still growing teenager. 

“She developed early and classmates made fun of her blossoming bust and swimmers’ shoulders.

“They started calling me fat,” Paris says softly. It made her very self-conscious.

So she wears two suits to swim. They are a drag on her swimming times, but help camouflage her curves”

That is part of the problem with judging “the obesity epidemic” on bmi and averages…it sounds as if this girl is athletic and an early develpoer…and THAT makers her in danger of being obese?  Her doctor suggested she join the study because her sisters went to college and came back obese….but does that mean that the athletic paris would as well?  the article blames the biggest loser for making us thing that “overweight” isn’t bad for you. (wtf?) “”Reality shows like ‘The Biggest Loser’ definitely have not helped,” she said. They’ve skewed the public’s perception of what overweight looks like, featuring people who are dangerously obese” /headdesk.

The article follows the first (honeymoon) months of the family diet (lifestyle change /rolleyes) with relish….they all lose weight, even the growing 14-year-old (her whole family has to sign up with her) they all go vegetarian.  from April to Oct Paris loses 8 lb. (according to her bmi chart she started out 20 lb overweight) She gushes about how she looks ect, ect, the stuff everyone does when they are losing weight.   but after Christmas, it falls apart.  and of course, they blame her, not homeostasis, or hunger, or the fact THAT SHES A GROWING TEEN. 

Chicago’s 2008-09 winter is harsh, snowy and cold. Paris feels little motivation to venture outside to exercise. It’s dark when she gets home from school and homework keeps her busy until bedtime.

Her friends alternate between encouragement and saying she’s wasting her time. Her dad says Paris “is fine as long as she’s at home. She pretty much sticks to the diet. When she’s with friends, they go out to burger places. She struggles with that a bit.”

At school lunch, friends reach over and grab bites of her veggie sandwiches, and Paris thinks it’s unfair that their food is off-limits. Sometimes she takes a few bites, anyway.

By April 2009, it’s clear Paris will miss her birthday goal. In fact, she’s put on about 5 pounds. Wearing a tight magenta tank top accentuating her tummy bulge, she says, “I just want my stomach a little flatter.”

i HATE that.  THEY BLAME HER.   for gaining 5 lbs.  (most women don’t finish putting on height until their late (ie 18ish) teens.  not to mention that early developers add 5-10 lb of boob which, against popular belief, is NOT factored into bmi stats or “overweight” range measurements) her dad blames her.  Her friends “other” her, telling her she’s fail or commiserating in her dieting.  And she see the failure…and keeps failing…after 2 years, she has gained 12 lbs…which sounds perfectly normal to me considering she went form 14-16 but the article and her doctor sem to disagree.   Even the adults in her family only lost 5lbs (her family stuck to the vegetarian diet), or non at all over 2 years.   the grand total for 12 lbs gain for a growing teen over 2 years (and a weight loss of 5lbs in the mom)?  “A research grant paid for the Woodses to participate; otherwise the counseling and checkup sessions likely would have cost well over $4,000.”  4k to doctors for nothing….no real results, but the article trumps it up like it’s an improvement… all it shows to me is the fulitlity of trying to “diet”  I am pretty sure that paris will stay fairly healthy…..shes a swimmer and a lifeguard, walks to school and work, and eats a fairly healthy diet for a teen (her family still eats vegetarian at home, she does eat meat with friends.)   In fact i worry that all the study did was make her feel like a failure and set her up for future diet failures.

 

a voice in recovery January 28, 2010


As you probably know by now, i am a recovering bulimic, and am always looking for ways to support others in the recovery process, as well as looking for advice and insight on my own recovery.  I follow weightless (http://blogs.psychcentral.com/weightless/2010/01/qa-on-eating-disorder-recovery-with-kendra-a-voice-in-recovery-part-2/) which features thoughtful interviews with people in the recovery process.    

WARNING MAY BE TRIGGERING

A problem that eating disorders have in the media is their portrayal.   It, like dieting, is often seen as a “willpower”  issue, when it’s so much more than that (much like dieting)   “I do worry more about trash media articles, because often the articles sound cliché, and make it sound like eating disorders are a willpower issue and not a complicated biological, chemical, cultural, environmental disorder.”   Also, everyone sees the wasting waif that is the face of anorexia….but put me in a line up and you wouldn’t be able to go “HER…thats the bulimic”   That is one of the MANY pitfalls of judging a person by their weight.   Tell me to “lose weight fatty”  and not so long ago it would throw me into a crying tailspin where I would purge everything I ate for 3 months.   Hell I have even had relatives tell me to just be bulimic for 3 months so you lose 30 lbs so you can get out there and date after my husband left me (thanks insensitive bitch!)   If I am skinny and its after 1994, it’s NOT because of a successful diet….its because I throw up.  ITs when I get “fat” again that I am healthy, not living in a hell with my worth being defined as a number at the convergence of calories in, exercise, willpower, and hatred.. 

This particular article is with Kendra, the head of A voice of Recovery on facebook (http://www.facebook.com/AVoiceinRecovery) and she had some awesome things to say about ed, recovery and advocacy.  First, she lashes out at the diet industry, which is the root of poor body image in oh so many women. ” I worry that because dieting is running rampant in this country by a multi-billion dollar industry, that parents will see dieting as a girl’s “right of passage.” I worry people will start dieting and end up with eating disorders. I believe the diet industry is a very damaging, powerful industry.”  that is why diet ads, ESPICALLY to those in recovery can be so toxic….it’s really hard to ignore all the “lose weight fatty or no one will love you” messages in the media…or worse yet “lose weight fatty or your gonna DIIIEEEEEEEE” (i think i want a t-shirt with that on it, as a caption for a picture of receipts for diet food) that is the new special hell in the media for ed folks.   Because EVERY diet becomes restriction, and for those with and ed, this can mean relapse.

She also talks about the lack of information for those RECOVERED….you hear all these stories about the bravery of women going into ED treatment, but you don’t see the reality out the other side…..IT can feel hopelessly long, and hard, and damn near impossible.   The media, ESPICALLY for bulimia, doesn’t really talk about the long term effects….for me, my ED is becoming VERY real as my teeth fall out one by one….before the of 40.   I also have digestion issues and acid reflux disease (from all my purging, my tummy ph is all messed up) and a horrid gag reflex.   She too talks on her issues (which the media never covers for bulimics, or if they do it’s an aside, cause we aren’t SKINNY so its ok) 

“I do have a LOT of dental issues. I was a kid who never had cavities, always had white teeth, and I now struggle with cavities, gum damage, etc. I also have a lot of digestive problems. Since I abused laxatives, I have a hard time processing foods. I also restricted and threw up so much food that I have acid reflux, and issues with eating certain types of foods.” 

They don’t tell you that you can never enjoy orange juice (bottled sunshine) again without pain.  Or red sauce (at least for me). 

Kendra also talks on how people can help loved ones with an ed.   Like with alcoholism, its really hard to help someone stop when they don’t WANT to stop.   You have to have that Aha! moment.  It’s important to remember, folks may NOT want help.  “Also – this disorder lies:  Often while you think a loved one may need help, the person struggling will not and sometimes cannot see this. Try not to lash out with frustration, and understand that it is a very complicated disorder, and it is normal for the person struggling to not want help, be unwilling to stop behaviors and may get very angry at any suggestion of help.”

It’s people like her that give me the courage to take it one day at a time, step by step into recovery.  Sometimes all you can say is “I will try again tomorrow”