Tag Archives: health

Plus Size Health News Roundup 6/11/12

This is a collection of health news and related links for plus-size women. Please bear in mind that many, even most of such studies are the following

    1)Funded by corporations that make a great deal of money from the diet industry. 2)Inconclusive. 3)Find correlation, yes, but not causation. A triangle may be prone to cancer, but a square also being a geometric shape does NOT mean it is also prone to cancer. 4)Exaggerated and panic-inducing. The “obesity epidemic” exists in part because people never previously considered “obese” have been re-classified under an arbitrary definition of “fat.”

For more insight and understanding into this, please read Junkfood Science from the beginning.

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Scales
Scales (Photo credit: Jarod Carruthers)

“Spending too much time in front of computers and other electronic screens may cause American children’s heart and lung fitness levels, or “cardiorespiratory” fitness, to decline, a new study suggests.”

 

Yes, being inactive and choosing sedentary activities, on the computer or in front of a TV, does mean you get out of shape.  This does NOT mean that spending time at the computer makes you fat. Spending TOO MUCH time at the computer does. It’s a matter of confronting and managing the neurological impulse that gets you to keep clicking, staring, and flicking long after you got your real useful material.

“One possibility is that along with other lifestyle changes, black girls need to get a lot more exercise than white girls to start making a difference in their obesity risk.”

 

Research into the health of different racial groups requires just as much “correlations is not causation” chanting as does research into obesity for everyone. I’ve only in the past ten years come to the realization that I got a genetic code handed to me that demands way, WAY more exercise than what might be expected of the WASP-y white girl “norm.” Trying to honor that need around social factors – like butt-in-chair desk jobs – and physical factors, like a limiting and severe allergic condition – has made the last several years an inching progress towards what my body needs, versus what I was programmed to think it “only needed” based on a formula of everybody else’s body (which is not my body, which is not your body.) I can only assume that you would have to look at the entire life context for each and every girl in the study to get even a shard of the truth. Was the household stressful? Did she have places to go outside and play safely? What was the standard diet in her home? Did she have any control over her food choices? All of this stuff matters, too.

  • A German preliminary study suggests that bloodletting – blood donation – can improve diabetes and high blood pressure.

“Blood donation may prevent not just diabetes but also cardiovascular disease for the obese,” study leader Professor Andreas Michalsen from the Charité-University Medical Centre, in Berlin, said in a journal news release.

But another expert isn’t convinced the findings support a bloodletting Renaissance. It’s true that excessive iron can worsen high blood pressure and diabetes, so it’s a good idea for anyone with those conditions to make sure they’re not unnecessarily boosting their levels by taking an iron supplement or multivitamin containing iron, said Dr. Suzanne Steinbaum, a preventive cardiologist at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City.”

If you have a BMI greater than 60, you are at risk for lymphedema, a painful leg condition. Obesity for doctors that still use BMI starts at 30 – so 60 is on the more extreme end. While I think a good chunk of health research into obesity is just scare journalism and scapegoating, there are aspects of having a larger body that really does negatively impact your health – this is one of them, and it’s worse (for the most part) than chafing and skin infections that can happen for those that do not know how to care for a fat body.

  • Older adults with a BMI over 30 (going to use this instead of “obese” although BMI is mostly baloney) suffer from more poorly controlled asthma.
  • A larger waist is correlated with increased risk of diabetes – but the study does not say how much, and it does not state how many people were studies. It also concludes with “this study did not show a cause-and-effect relationship.”
  • Limiting people’s food choices does not help them lose weight. Nope. For those with disordered eating, it’s much more about why they eat, not WHAT they eat. Get to the why and the what becomes more flexible.
  • For those on Atkins-style diets, your kidneys are more or less safe.
  • Even women who become NOT obese face fat stigma.

“The participants also showed greater bias against obese people after they had read about women who had lost weight, compared to after reading about weight-stable women — regardless of whether the weight-stable women were thin or obese.”

“The researchers said they were particularly troubled by the finding that participants’ negative attitudes towards obese people increased when they were falsely told that body weight is easily controlled.”

 

I have had the experience. In high school I lost 60 pounds, but to my peers, I was the fat girl, and that was not going to change no matter how not-fat I was. Clearly the disease of the obese is not just – or maybe not even – in the fat people themselves.

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Plus Size News Roundup 6/11/12

Karolina Szostak

“[Collins] was spotted unashamedly disobeying the ‘no carbs before Marbs’ rule.”  …and how did the reporter know she had not saluted the day with a touch of lung damage?

  • This season of the UK version of Big Brother has a former plus-size model in the mix. Said model has already threatened to walk off the show.
  • There was a fire that nearly burned down a crematorium. The blame is being placed on the plus-size cadaver they were burning … because – this is sarcasm – fat people are at fault even when we’re dead. More likely the crematorium equipment was outdated and something went wrong.
  • Susanne Eman has set out to be the world’s biggest bride, aiming for a 9xl wedding dress. (I  do not endorse any extreme diet behaviors – EVER.)
  • A review of weight stereotyping lets us know how far we have yet to come.
  • A Mother Nature Network post highlights “5 surprising environmental costs of being overweight.”  It is unresearched and deeply inaccurate, repeating the unquestioned and un fact-checked tropes about the healthcare issues. (There are problems, but they are not that EVERY fat person has diabetes and heart attacks – also, it’s been repeatedly found that a)we do not tax the healthcare system more than any thin person, and b)in the US, there IS no government-run healthcare system to burden! IT’S ALL PRIVATELY OWNED AND RUN meaning fat people are NOT sucking up taxpayer money at a higher proportion than the rest of the populat!)  They have a point about the increased use of larger materials – but ultimately, producing ANY new material of ANY size instead of recycling and repurposing creates the strain.
  • A feature on a plus-size mothers group in the UK raises another reporting issue: these women are being described by reporters, but not themselves as “proud” to be plus-sized. Using the “proud” label in these contexts is an insidiously nasty form of fat-shaming. “Look, they’re not even ashamed.” It’s also a gross interpretation of what these women are actually saying. They’re proud to be decent human beings living their lives at any given size, and damn straight, that’s something to be proud of.
  • There’s a question of whether plus-size male fashion shoots can help men’s body image. Being fat is what is finally getting the genders to realize gender does not make them inequal? That’s a painful way to make it happen.

 

 

Super-Local

International

  • A Polish news blog investigates the charms of Scarlett Johansson, implying her curves are “what attracts men.”  It also incorrectly labels her plus-size, and makes it about the men, most of whom aren’t as relevant to her popularity as they’d like to be.
  • A Norwegian modeling agency has started hiring amputees to model clothing.
  • Polish television star Karolina Szostak has had to deal with a lot of Internet trolls using her size as an excuse for their appalling behavior.
  • Another plus-size shop is opening in the Phillipines – it’s looking like the country is on its way to being a mecca for the plus size petite set!
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Plus Size Health News Roundup 6/4/12

This is a collection of health news and related links for plus-size women. Please bear in mind that many, even most of such studies are the following

    1)Funded by corporations that make a great deal of money from the diet industry. 2)Inconclusive. 3)Find correlation, yes, but not causation. A triangle may be prone to cancer, but a square also being a geometric shape does NOT mean it is also prone to cancer. 4)Exaggerated and panic-inducing. The “obesity epidemic” exists in part because people never previously considered “obese” have been re-classified under an arbitrary definition of “fat.”

For more insight and understanding into this, please read Junkfood Science from the beginning.

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overweight bodies chart
What scientists call "Overweight" changes with our knowledge of human health (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“People with good metabolic health are not at risk of future heart disease — even if they are obese.”

  • In what I consider a genuine risk of morbid obesity, spinal fusion surgeries are much more likely to have complications than for patients in the lower weight classes.
  • More overweight women in particular are experiencing kidney stones.
  • New point of annoyance: everyone who is fat is suddenly obese. Obese used to  be a specific medical term that described a person whose body went past the size of functionality. This is making people with functional but fat bodies into socially-determined (NOT professionally determined) medical cases when they are not. The kidney stones article is one such offender, and really, it’s an important piece of news – people with high protein, high calcium diets tend to get them. Notably, this also describes some of the more popular commercially sold diet plans since 1990.  Drink your water, not your soda, eat your veggies, and work up a sweat – all in the name of keeping stuff from hanging out in your kidneys.
  • Babies born via C-section are statistically growing up fatter. Many, many C-sections are unnecessary as it is.
  • Before I post this link, I want to remind you: correlation is not causation. Also, this condition is pretty rare. There is research showing that some overweight and obese (ha! distinction!) children are at risk for a neurological condition that causes blindness.
  • If you want more flexible arteries as you age, exercise.
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Plus Size News Roundup 6/4/12

Preta Gil for plus size fashion line
Brazilian actress Preta Gil
  • According to a study at University of Buffalo, larger-sized automobile drivers are 21% more likely to die in car crashes. This came out of a study of 155,000 fatal car crashes. Certainly this sounds damning, but I have a very serious question: did they ONLY look at car collisions where someone died, or was there a control group that included crashes without fatalities? It’s hard to say without seeing the data where and how size itself contributed to a person’s death. Did the jaws of life not work? Were the paramedics unable to lift a person from the car? Did the airbag hit an organ wrong on 1000 different fat people? This is stuff I really want to understand – for my own health.
  • New York City is banning the sale of sugar-based drinks over the size of 16 ounces. The ban would not impact diet soda, dairy, or fruit juice. So what has the foie gras ban done for the gall bladder surgery rate overall?
  • The OC Register has a public service announcement: you’re wearing the wrong bra.
  • Now that the Daily Mail has been informed it’s run by a bunch of jerks on par with the US publication National Inquirer, they’re taking a new alarmist take on obesity reporting: Calling Someone Fat could be a Hate Crime!Have they been networking with Fox News or something? I’m pretty sure this blog is not a hate crime, and I talk to myself like I’m a cheerleader for my fat self.
  • Hope for the future: Amanda Koker, 21 year old graduate from Mount Ida College, is a plus-size person who is a fashion designer that likes a little edge.
  • Sick of Photoshop abuse? Someone took it to the streets with these H&M ads.
  • On a fun note: Drop Dead Diva had its season premiere on Sunday. While I want to strangle the costume designers for the crap they put Jane Bingham in, I love how in the plotline her fatness is now not even a thing most of the time. That’s how I’ve learned to live!

  • Caryn Frankin has some well-researched insight into Vogue/Conde Nast’s new policy of healthy weight and legal age only models.
  • Just because I was NOT in a state of frothing hate for the television industry this week, someone decided to premiere the show My Big Fat Fetish. Ah, hate for the slime that passes for humanity in the entertainment industry restored. By the way, NOT having tattoos is abnormal now – perhaps update that.  Someone out there has a fetish for twist-ties – anything can be, and is, a fetish to someone. The above is not special.
  • An Irish mother talks about raising her obese son.
  • Lily Mae Harrington may make another plus-size character on the show Glee.
  • Finally someone is talking about the problem of Fat Bullying- and it does have a place right next to Gay Bullying.
  • An interview with eccentrically self-branded photographer Perou brings out some interesting statements about plus-size women and fashion.

“Real shaped women don’t fit in stupidly cut clothes. The only way those stupidly cut clothes look good is if you put them on a clothes hanger, i.e. super skinny models. Do I want to sleep with a super skinny model? No. Do I want a curvy beautiful woman to be around? Yes. As a person I prefer shapely women to stick thin women, but shapely women don’t make unshapely, badly cut clothes look good.”

So again, it’s a 50/50 facepalm split. The curvy women are also NOT obligated to look like someone you want to f – Perou. When you understand that only in specific occasions are women dressing for the male gaze, you will become a transcendent human being and maybe an even better photographer.

 

The Business of Plus

International Plus Size News Roundup

plus size model Kelly Brook 2012

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Health links roundup

This is a collection of health news and related links for plus-size women. Please bear in mind that many, even most of such studies are the following

    1)Funded by corporations that make a great deal of money from the diet industry. 2)Inconclusive. 3)Find correlation, yes, but not causation. A triangle may be prone to cancer, but a square also being a geometric shape does NOT mean it is also prone to cancer. 4)Exaggerated and panic-inducing. The “obesity epidemic” exists in part because people never previously considered “obese” have been re-classified under an arbitrary definition of “fat.”

For more insight and understanding into this, please read Junkfood Science from the beginning.

=>

Remember, your mileage may vary on the accuracy of any mainstream media report. Many of these studies find correlations between obesity and everything from global warming to needing oxygen. Correlation is not causation – so read the details carefully. You don’t have to be a doctor to recognize the absurd.

Social Network Obesity Theory Completely Debunked

Silhouettes representing healthy, overweight, ...
Image via Wikipedia

In case you missed it, the social networking theory that obesity can be spread just by knowing and being friends with obese people has been thoroughly debunked.

In the ever well-done Junkfood Science blog, Sandy Szwarc said  “A social networking theory of contagious chin dimples might have been understood as implausible, but not so of obesity.”

The new study put together a series of probably conditions – and indeed, having acne and being tall can NOT spread via Facebook.

I could go on a “what the hell is wrong with people?” rant here, but it wouldn’t really contribute to the conversation. The reality is is that fat is not catching, and while the social factors of food are embedded into shaping culture itself, sitting next to your chubby aunt will not make your butt spread so it can reach over to say hello.

Downtown Journal : stories

Work out at workBy Michelle BruchStaffing firm Salo keeps employees movingIf your working life is spent in front of a computer screen, you can hardly be blamed for gaining a few extra pounds over the course of your career.Dr. James Levine, an endocrinologist based at the Mayo Clinic, points to sitting as an important culprit of weight gain. His research has found that obese individuals tend to sit two-and-a-half more hours per day than lean people.So what’s a Downtown office worker to do?Salo LLC, a professional staffing firm based at 13th Street & Harmon Avenue, has taken Levine’s research to heart and installed over a dozen treadmill desks in its office. The $6,000 setup looks like a standard treadmill that is outfitted with an adjustable countertop. There’s a phone jack for a headset and a computer attached to the table. Employees can pull up their home computer’s desktop right at the walking workstation.

Downtown Journal : stories

I’ve voiced my contention before that a lot of the perceived “obesity crisis” is directly attributable to conditions in the very workplaces that are trying to reign in their healthcare costs. This solution by a Minneapolis firm is brilliant – since corporate work frequently takes up the bulk of time in the day, they’ve found a way to include exercise in the workplace – and it’s increased productivity.

Brilliant.

The Internet: It Makes You Fat?

This study linking weight gain to sleep deprivation, excess alcohol and too much time on the Internet rang a bell for me, because it pretty much described my entire lifestyle in college. Basically, I double depressed my immune system and spent a lot of time sitting around at the computer – I was definitely more active before I developed an online life. I am not taking this as an “O Noes! TEH INTERNETZ BAD!” I’m reading this as…yeah, I’m going to be more careful how I manage my time – and manage it so I spend less time online and more time going for walks, enjoying my balcony or making creative shiny things.

June 23 Obligatory Health Links

Quit Nagging Kids to Diet and Maybe They’ll Lose Weight

Obesity May Increase Knee Arthritis in Men but NOT in Women
If you went to the obvious misogynist joke on this, consider yourself smacked.

Accuracy of Mammography Varies

Obese Teenagers More Likely to Die in Middle Age – at least, in Norway
This study looks pretty valid, but I don’t have all the data. Since I actually wasn’t a fat teenager – I lost 60 pounds at 14, and became technically fat again at 22 – I have no idea what this means for me.

The one consistent health tip I’ve seen that matters? Do what it takes to be happy. Love your family. Love your friends. Recognize that hate is a carcinogenic substance. Definitely easier said than done, but genuinely happy people with all sorts of doctor disapproved habits seem to come out pretty darn healthy.

5-30-2008 Obligatory Health Links

For these, I’m leaving it to you lovely readers to analyze the articles and look at the studies for yourselves. Obesity so far is not looking like the death sentence it’s made out to be, even as the insistence that it is gets repeated. Take responsibility for your health, not responsibility for what someone who isn’t you thinks about your health. Also, this aggregation goes all the way back to the middle of May; don’t be surprised to see conflicting links down the line.

The reason I do these articles, also, is that I take them directly from a US government sourced newsfeed/service. This is data that the US government is promoting. This is exactly why it’s incredibly important to look at it closely.

Drugs Alone Don’t Lower Heart Disease for Overweight Americans

US Obesity Rates “Alarmingly High”

Ads Touting Dairy for Weight Loss “Misleading”

Physical Activity Lowers Breast Cancer Risk

Lowering Dietary Fat May Help Prevent Prostate Cancer

Obesity Tied to Risk of Psychiatric Disorder

Minneapolis Tops List of Heart Friendly Cities for Women

I live there!

Oxidized LDL Cholesterol Linked to Metabolic Syndrome

Metabolic Syndrome Foretells Diabetes in Elderly

Weight, Lifestyle Factors Tied to Urinary Symptoms

Heavy Babies More Prone to Weezing as Toddlers