Misconceptions: Body Shape, Size - Environment & Media Influences
Global obesity rates have nearly tripled since 1975, but it has nothing to do with skin color but skin color and ethnicities can be affect how racially biased and racist healthcare workers and public use stereotypes and misconceptions of various kinds to misjudge what is actually healthy. Outdated ways of thinking and current toxic media culture lead many people assume that the massive number of overweight, obese, and morbidly obese numbers of people globally are from lack of exercise and balanced nutrition in the correct amounts, but recent studies show that even though those can be factors that cause people to be overtly overweight there can be many other contributing reasons to be aware of. One is unacknowledged racism, microaggression bias, for various body types that under closer medical investigation are actually healthy. But the social norms of what is overtly viewed as healthy is portrayed as healthy in most media platforms today that are built to shame people with into increasing their consumer spending, is not as diverse and ethnically respectful of many body shapes and sizes that are biologically healthy even if not what is portrayed in the media as the ideal in advertisers afford to pray on people's insecurities to increase consumerism. For those who are indeed overweight or unhealthy, there are also socioeconomic disparities, environmental pollution like air pollution-associated obesity in regions of higher PM, and endocrine disrupting chemicals ECGs messing with natural DNA and cause all sorts of problems with various hormones and contribute to metabolic dysfunction-associated fatty liver disease (MAFLD), non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), obesity and even Type 2 diabetes as well as fertility issues. Both NAFLD & MAFLD cause further metabolic dysfunction from not allowing the liver to process foods, wastes, and toxins properly further clogging up the system.
Also, not only ECDs and gall stones such as from lower bile acid transport can cause non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) from lower ability to break down and eliminate fats while damaging the liver, but also disruptions to the natural inborn intestinal microbiota from over use of antibiotics play a role. 70% of all women get uterine fibroids by age 50 many unknowingly, some of those the fibroids can grow quite large. Lack of sleep, and long periods of negative stress causing high levels of cortisol production with the sympathetic nervous system promoting obesity, that can be compounded by depression and vitamin D deficiencies. To add insult to injury and causes further injury through biased misdiagnosis is often many doctors, nurses, make visual assumptions without proper and thorough diagnostics and testing to get to the root of the real cause of excess body mass instead of helping the person who is suffering; they fat shame them instead telling them to exercise more and eat less, or recommend dangerous and damaging gastric lap band surgeries without truly investigating the root cause of the symptoms.
Instead of assuming blame on the patient because that seems easier to rush to overlook the not-obvious factors or do more testing because of personal bias, make excuses of stressors like pandemic and post pandemic medical systems are stretched thin, or burned out & time pressured staff think it is a way to cross another patient of the wait list quickly– choose to open your mind to other legitimate and possibly life threatening causes of obesity in the patient. Those patients often get blamed and fat shamed through thinly vailed medical language. Thus, eventually they have to return when their medical condition becomes worse and more complicated because doctors didn’t investigate more thoroughly initially and patients are even less trusting of your professional competency due to the previous experience. BMI charts only consider height and weight, but not levels of body fat or lean muscle mass, thus even body builders’ BMI calculations tell them that they are overweight or obese. More accurate medical diagnostics need to be made readily available, that take all the variables into account that are comprehensive without racial or sexist bias which is all too prevalent in medical systems and publicly worldwide––especially in the Global North.
So, the next time you see someone overweight do not assume they are unnaturally overweight due to lack of exercise, eating too much or eating bad foods, as there are many other things that could be weighing them down. And if you are a medical professional do your due diligence to investigate further that could save lives and productive livelihoods for entire families affected by each patient.
Zen Yahweh Fitness® will help you achieve your goals with accredited training and positive encouragement to help you stay focused as you continue to commit to your goals of an active life style, with balanced nutrition. Zen Yahweh Fitness will tailor an exercise program for your specific needs and encourage regular attendance to workouts, because consistency of regular training and alternating workout variants, accompanied by portion control and a balanced diet are key to your success!