posted by meowser
OK, normally I send posts like this straight to spamville. (Not that I get very many, but still.) But just because I’m in a blasting-plastic-fish-in-a-barrel kinda mood, I thought I’d offer this particular one up for your moldy-pea shooters. Disputing my claim that choosing the fries over the salad was hardly going to make a difference of 100 pounds to anyone all by itself, our troll, thinking I’m fat just because nobody ever bothered to teach me calorie voodoo math before I hit junior high (thereby proving that sie has not read ANYTHING else I’ve posted here), schools me thusly:
-Choosing the fries over a salad CAN mean 100 pounds or more. If you consistently choose fries over salad thats a daily dose of grease, cholesterol, starch….fries provide very fattening calories…not to mention if you consistently chose salad you would be getting a daily dose of complex carbohydrates, vitamins and other nutrients with considerably less calories (that is if you are eating a salad with a modest amount of dressing, not a soup). Do a little experiment and purchase a couple of rats. Keep one of them on a regular diet of water, fruits, nuts and vegetables. Keep the other on a regular diet of processed foods (soda, chips, fries, burgers, cookies). It will not take long to see the physical differences that diet effects. You could probably even switch the diets of the rats and and see the effects follow the diets. You will quickly find it is within everyones genetic range to weigh a lot.
Sure, people have the genetic capacity to grow large, obviously or it wouldn’t happen. However, claiming that fat is not a matter of choice but a matter of genetics is absurd. Consider the following example:
There are x amount of cigarette smokers with lung cancer. They have developed lung cancer because it is within their genetic capacity to do so.
Wooookay. One of these days I’m gonna do a whole “why fat isn’t like smoking” post, but let’s take the lung cancer part first, just because it’s so tickly. Yes, it’s true, some people are genetically far more predisposed to forming metastatic cells in their bodies at a relatively young age than others, regardless of environmental factors. That’s probably why very few smokers actually die of primary lung cancer, even though the vast majority of people who get primary lung cancer were heavy smokers at one time. See the difference? It’s statistically impossible for 97% of smokers to die of lung cancer. Don’t some of them die in car wrecks or fighting wars or something? It’s far more common for smokers who continue to smoke heavily for decades and die of natural causes to contract COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease), which leads to respiratory failure and emphysema. In fact, it’s about, oh, eighty times more common than lung cancer, and other than in a few cases where there’s a congenital alpha-1-antitrypsin deficiency, is caused almost entirely by chronic exposure to serious pulmotoxins (of which cigarette smoke is one). And while you certainly need a genetic tendency to enjoy tobacco (or at least not have a complete aversion to it) to take up smoking, and genetics can certainly affect one’s ability to quit, starting smoking is completely voluntary (even figuring in that it usually happens in one’s teens, when feelings of immortality tend to peak). Becoming fat is not nearly so voluntary for most fat people. You can get really fucking fat doing everything your doctor tells you to do. I did.
Which brings me to They Who Have Come To Enlighten Me’s first point. Which is that if rats eat fries instead of salad, they’ll gain 100 pounds. Or something like that. Leaving aside that TWHCTEM obviously has never met anyone with a hummingbird metabolism, much less lived with someone like that and observed on a daily basis what they actually eat, let’s explore what “fries versus salad” actually means to most people. No, it doesn’t mean you eat a large order of fries (or hashbrowns, or the equivalent) with every meal, every single day, on top of everything else on your plate. I don’t know of anyone who has ever done that; even binge eaters usually want more variety than that. Maybe some movie star did that to (temporarily) gain weight to play a fat character, I don’t know.
But most of us who are not trying to gain weight, we don’t do that. What we do is, once, maybe twice a week when we eat fast food or go out, get fries on the side. (Yes, I know some people are much more frequent fast food consumers, but most people past college age don’t have fries 10 times a week.) How many more calories is that than a salad? Well, it depends. If your idea of a “salad” is all non-starchy vegetables and no (or the merest hint of) dressing, croutons, nuts, or anything else, and your idea of an order of fries is enough to build a hut with, probably a lot. Although still not enough to make a 100-pound difference in body weight without way more help from your metabolism than most of us get. But consider, if you will, that most of us are going to eat maybe 10 to 30 fries at a sitting, depending on size of said fries, and that ordering a plain, dull salad will almost certainly mean we will be hungrier later and crave a snack — come on, if you’ve ever dieted, you’ve been there. “I’m being soooo good! I’m eating a big bowl of veggies! Yay me! And boo all the fry-snarfing pigs!” And then — maybe not the same day, but surely someday very soon — appetite wins out over the dieter’s high, and before you know it you’re putting Chunky Monkey up your nose. (Ow.)
This is what happens when you give people plenty of food and free will to feed themselves how they choose. We value those things, do we not? You’re not really suggesting that we get put in…um…cages and have our captors feed us when they decide we’re hungry instead of us, right? And really, if the idea of people eating McDonald’s for lunch every day bothers you that much, if you really do think it’s any of your goddamn business, open a damn fruit stand in a poor neighborhood or some other produce desert and give them an alternative. But spare me the finger-rubbing smugness. Geez.
Okay, I’m done. Your turn.