Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Not About Excuses

Reading the article that I linked to in the previous post, one might conclude that researchers are trying to help people absolve themselves of responsibility for their weight problems by explaining that their problems are genetic, chemical, and neurological. Though certainly it would be heartening if the world at large could develop some compassion for the fat people who they currently despise, the point is not to provide excuses. The point is to provide answers.

If you're fighting a war and you keep losing, you don't simply keep charging into battle using exactly the same tactics which lead to failure. You reevaluate the situation and try another plan of attack. In the battle to solve the problems more and more people are having with their weight, it's important to understand why all of the "common sense" answers aren't helping. It's all well and good to say, "it's simple, eat less, exercise more," but clearly the problem is more complex than that. For some reason, people cannot do these thing or they are not sufficiently effective.

The point of research is to find a new path of treatment which has a higher chance of effectiveness. Treating everyone who gains weight as if they were the same doesn't work, particularly when you treat the person who is 100 lbs. overweight in the same manner as someone who is 10 lbs. overweight. I've known that for a long time. One reason I despise doctors is that every time I've visiting one for a problem, they say, "you should lose weight," as if it was as simple as that. They can offer meal plans and tell you to exercise, but treating the problem so simplistically has not worked for me. It's something that has failed more than just this blog author and it's failing more and more people all of the time.

Complex problems may require complex solutions, and increased insight into those factors is going to help people find better ways of dealing with their problems. Though I still have to battle my bodies sluggish response to leptin and failure to inform me that I'm full, at least knowing that this is an issue helps me formulate the proper mindset. If I'm still hungry after having eaten "enough", I may feel enslaved to my biological needs. If I know that this is a failure of my brain to recognize that I've eaten enough, I may be able to rationalize it rather than think I simply need more food than other people.

Though the research that indicates that we were born to be fat can seem discouraging, it doesn't have to be. It can be about finding answers through understanding the problem more thoroughly.