To start, a bit of boring repetition: I'm a food addict, but I believe unreservedly in personal responsibility. When I was active, no one but me put the food in my mouth, and I was responsible. I'm still responsible, but with help and support, I've been eating healthily for almost 20 years.
Back again today with the Center for Consumer Freedom: This post from yesterday, in their "Big Fat Lies" section, has several points worth commenting on, but I'm going to focus on one:
Who has the right to speak on questions of health? Is there a prerequisite, or can anyone chime in? The CFC's strong opinion is, people who are overweight should keep their mouths shut on questions of overweight.
Frequent readers will know that I love the frat boys over at the "Center for Consumer Freedom," the intentionally misnomered restaurant and food-industry mouthpiece. They keep serving up testosterone-fueled, logically shaky arguments that beg for skewering.
A friend tipped me off to the blog of Dr. Joe Wright, writer-in-residence for the William B. Castle Society of Harvard Medical School, and I'm glad she did. The jumping off point for this post is Jamie Oliver, the young-ish chef cum nutritional crusader from Britain.
He makes several points, many of them really cogent. Such as...
I'll start with the obligatory: I eat meat. Not as much as I used to, but I don't see myself going vegetarian any time soon.
Having said that, I love this, from Grist mag: "EPA intern offends sensitive meat-industry souls," by Tom Philpott.
The intern, Nicole Reising, wrote, in part, "Regulations can be made to help prevent the effects of meat production, but the easiest way to lessen the environmental impacts is to become a vegetarian or vegan."
In the Times a couple of days ago, health writer Jane Brody wrote about foods advertised to children in a story headlined "Risks for Youths Who Eat What They Watch," and said little that's startling:
I am astounded by how often, and intensely, political views enter the obesity debate. Conservatives rail against the "food police," and hammer on "personal responsibility" as the solution. (As a former 365-pounder with 20 years of diligence toward achieving and maintaining a normal-sized body, I know about personal responsibility, and agree that each of us needs to claim our own part.)
When I saw on Twitter that fast food outlets at big US bases in Afghanistan would be closed, I thought for a moment that it might be a military statement in favor of healthy eating.
Alas, Burger King, Orange Julius, Dairy Queen, and others are being escorted off base because "they take up valuable resources like water, power, flight and convoy space and that cutting back on non-essentials is key to running an efficient military operation," Reuters reported.
I've visited this subject before, but not only is it important, and not only is the deadline approaching, but this post has a slightly different target. In the past, I've written about binge-eating disorder, which has been proposed as an addition to the next edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, the manual of the American Psychiatric Association. To now, anorexia, bulimia, and "not otherwise specified" have been the only eating disorders in the DSM.
Can I just say it's exciting to disagree with someone of a different stripe for a change? The someone in question is George Miranda, president of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters Joint Council 16, which represents 120,000 workers in greater New York. I assume, totally without facts, that he and I might be on the same side of many issues. But not today.