In 2009 a security guard described me as “that fat over there.” I felt insulted, I asked myself how dare he calls me fat, I know I am a little overweight but I am not fat. How can he call me fat, what right does he have to call me fat? I was enraged?
He called me fat, but I don’t think the poor guy meant to hurt my feelings. I somehow got the feeling that he was lacking in modern etiquette that states that you cannot call people fat. If he had perhaps referred to me as that heavy set gentleman over there or the big boned gentleman over there I wouldn’t have had an issue. But no he called fat by its real name, fat!!
You see nowadays you don’t call fat by its real name, you cannot even call fat people fat. But I think that because we don’t call fat people fat we deny fat people the opportunity to do something about their weight because we call fat with all these names and adjectives that make people feel good about themselves while at the same time giving them an opportunity to deny the life threatening dangers of being overweight.
So in 2009 when the security guard called me fat I went into a mini depression for a day, when I got home that evening I asked my wife who until then had been trying everything within a wife’s power to get her husband to lose weight. I said to her, sweetie do you think am fat, seriously don’t spare my feelings just tell me if you think am fat?
Well she said to me very diplomatically then that right now I wouldn’t call you fat, but if you gain an additional 500 grams then you will be fat. Well I got the message and finally started doing something about it.
When I consulted my doctor, he told me that you are putting too much pressure on your heart and your skeleton by carrying all this weight.
You need to do something, he told me that I was no longer overweight but was obese.
I said but wait a minute, I don’t even have a protruding belly, and I don’t look like most fat people do. In fact for the amount of weight I had gained I still looked good, people used to tell me. But then weight is weight, whether you look good or not is not the point, the point is that you have gained it and you should lose it.
So today I sit here, 14 kg lighter and reflect on how I got fat.
According to my Body Mass Index I still have 5 more kilograms to go before I can say I am off the red. We live in society that doesn’t talk about being fat, where being fat is acknowledged as a sign of good living.
Most people are acceptably overweight, they don’t look fat and don’t even eat like fat people but they are overweight. These are the people that are at the risk of diabetes, high blood pressure and hyper tension. The people that we term acceptably overweight today used to be called very fat by the standard of ten years ago. But because fat keeps getting fatter, we tend to look at the fattest among us and think that we are not fat even though we are. The world is getting fatter by the day, simply because of modern food choices. Therefore if we are going to slim down then you should educate yourself as to what to eat and what not to eat at what times and in what quantities.
Nobody can teach you how to lose weight and nobody can even tell you to lose weight. It is up to you to take it upon yourself and get out of the denial band wagon and decide to do something about your weight.
It is said that more than half of the people that are overweight don’t see themselves as overweight. I think part of the reason why this is so is because society has made fat fashionable. Fat people too, have been allowed to be too sensitive about their weight. I mean why should fat people have an issue with being called fat when we call skinny people skinny. Should we also start inventing adjectives for skinny people?
Obesity and obesity related diseases kill more people every year across the world than HIV/Aids but then we don’t give this battle against obesity the attention it deserves.
Because we deny that fat exists, most of us are unable to see it when we are fat. We insist that we are just a little over weight. But how can we ever come up with solution to a problem that doesn’t exist?
Before you can solve a problem you must acknowledge that you have one, whether that problem is being over weight it doesn’t matter.