Sunday, July 12, 2009

Health Observations

There are a couple of shocking health related observations I have about the younger generation around me. Maybe it is location specific...

Firstly, there are a growing number of teenagers that are tanning bed consumers. Incidentally, they all seem to get their hair done at the same salon (or basement of friend's home) as the colour is a similar shade of bleached blond.

As a health care practitioner, I am stunned by this. I thought public has progressed in the last decade?! Don't we all know about the dangers of tanning? Isn't that bleached blond, leather dark skin with light colour lipstick considered passe (80's)?

My second observation involves what I call general recreation. I have a hypothesis about how it is that when one transitions from being a teenager to a working adult that increased weight seem to follow.

In my area, a favorite pastime is getting together on Friday nights after a long week's work and socializing with a beverage or two with plenty of snacks. Then it is off to a different place for Saturday and Sunday. BBQ's are usually involved. Good times are had by all.

It doesn't take too many weeks of fun before the pounds get packed on -- fairly innocently. Everyone is having a great time. Not many notices the effects of an extra 1000 calories or more every weekend. Fast forward a year and all of a sudden everyone is 15 pounds heavier.

I used to think that it was a question of will power. Now I know it is an innocent byproduct of having fun and being social. Understanding this phenomenon has helped me tremendously in my ability to help people at work.

By the time people get to the point they are seeing me as a client, and everyone has a set point where they suddenly realize that the changes are too much, they are frustrated because they feel they have done nothing wrong and the thought of not being able to participate in social gatherings hurt them greatly.


  1. Exercise, exercise, exercise. I once went on a hiking trip where I easily consumed 4000-5000 calories per day over the course of 2 weeks. But since I was walking 15-20 miles per day over mountainous terrain, and carrying everything on my back, I returned 20 pounds lighter than when I left. If more people would just use a little muscle to accomplish basic tasks in our motor-powered society, we'd be a lot less fat!

  2. Yes, when it comes right down to it, it is basic mathematics -- calories in vs. calories out.

    It's when the mind gets involved that clouds things...weight, money, lifestyle etc. etc.