The sixties came after the advent of the 1920-1930's revolution in food industry. The dietary oils were changed (not for the better I might add), due to big marketing in the dietary oil industry. Our flour was now white, due to steel mills replacing stone mills so we could have pretty white bread, so we lost the important fiber and minerals it once gave us. We no longer had to eat fresh vegetables and fruits, we could refrigerate and can goods became the norm. So many food changes totally changed and destroyed our diets and these are only a fraction of the ones those two decades began... but I digress. The 1940's was all about the war, the 50's about the rebirth of our world and by the 60's we were fat and it was becoming apparent something was causing the changes in our bodies as a nation. It was the "wonder years' to some, the coming of age to others, the first generation of dieters to still others. It was the decade when diets and all things diet became part of the national conscience. The TV was no longer just black and white, people could see people from all over the world, our world became a little smaller and we were more aware of all peoples. The TV added 10 pounds and that was almost more important than the many other things the TV brought to our worlds.
Diets became the norm in America. Weight Watchers was born telling us we needed them to look better. It was followed by so many Jennies, and Craig's that one looses count. Diet Aid became an over the counter "diet pill" it was harmless and it worked (Sound familiar to anyone). NO one questioned how or why it worked. I am not sure anyone did it back then for health reasons. It was all about looking good, fitting into those jeans or a little black dress. It was about making your man look at you anew.
So began the diet cycle that has gripped our nation, has never left and is now really really big business. Everyone had saccharine on their table in a clear pretty bottle, did anyone know what was really in it? The 1970's followed and I grew up knowing mom was on a diet, always, never realizing eating was a diet, you know the one we are suppose to live and not be on. I needless to say grew up with food issues. I was sure I was fat, after all my mom was or why would she be dieting, and I was surely bigger than someone I knew and bigger means you are fat, doesn't it? I grew up with lots of friends in my life, the cabbage diet, the cottage cheese diet, the grapefruit diet (that was my Grandma's favorite), and the list is endless and one followed the other. Smoking made you thin and by all mean woman should do that too, it was no longer just for men. We, after all, were in the throws of the generation of equality.
I became an adult and was fat, I wore a 10 and I was bigger than my mom who was fat, just ask her. I was horrible and should do something about it, shouldn't I, every one and every ad on TV said so. I became a Mother and my friends joined, weight watcher (they had a new plan, even better than the last), food anonymous, Jenny Craig, more diet pills but not the ones our moms took. Did you know they were really amphetamines? Did you know the saccharine and cigarettes cause cancer? On to the next one with unknown repercussion. We knew better this time, we took ephedrine, phen-phen and some of us became anorexic and other bulimic. Girls were killing themselves to be the perfect weight, no mater that age and having babies change the body by God's plan, we wanted to be perfect in the perfect bikini. Oprah yo-yoed, and still is, down a 100 and back up a 100. Never ending cycles of dieting.
Incidentally, and as and aside, I personally lost and regained a 100 pounds more than once, so don't think I am to stupid to know how to do it. I lost and yo-yoed as well and that little sentence is much more than an after thought of things past. I lost a hundred pounds in my late 20's through never ending obsession of my caloric intake and continuously exercising. This is not a simple quick process it is a long term 3 to 5 year cycle. Sound familiar? I am sure it does if you have ever successfully lost weight. Or are you on the first one and you have it all figures out, come see me in 5 years. One would also think 5 years would be a life time, not a cycle but not so. It was never a quick miraculous happenstance. It was always months and years of work, and in the end I never just stopped and became fat again over night. I lost weight by giving up all of my spare time and much of my time with my children, which was not mine to give, ever obsessing over everything I put in my mouth and how to account for it. I gave up all of my Bible reading time and most of the mommie time I owed my children, but I was thin and looked good everyone said so. My three older kids paid for my vanity but I was thin and that made me acceptable to society. Did God love that I was being selfish and not giving to those who need me? The second time I lost 100 lbs it was again my bible time (I usually spent 2-3 hours reading in the early morning) so instead of waking up to the Lord I spent that time walking seven miles daily, that took my reading time and most of my mornings, and my mommy time. Yes, sometime I took them with me but they were 2-3 and the best I could get them to walk was one mile, a long ways for them, one of them quite often needed carrying all the better, that helped me loose faster. I did teach them to love to exercise but I am so glad not my obsession and the cycle of dieting but in the end they only have one childhood and stealing it for my own self-absorbed uses was wrong both times. Thank God they can't remember that time in their lifes, unlike my older kids, they can. Christians might call my weight loss a conquering of my gluttony and to some that is true and I am happy for them, but for me it became at what cost is my victory? I find no where in the Bible where all my waking endeavors should be about myself. No matter if the result is the conquering of ones sin, especially if the conquering of that sin brought me to commit so many others. I have digressed to long on me....
Oh, maybe not quite, I think the thing that bugs me the most with this cycle that I would like to address, and find to be a particularly vicious part of this cycle of wonder diets, is the event of the internet. We have always had commercials in our faces about the newest diets. This time around, and I am sure for all the times to come, we have social media and now the inundations comes on a much more personal lever and unrelenting so. Which I know we have measures to stop but I hate to have to come to using them. I hate to have to give up a friend, that I love, to stop the never-ending promotion of their obsession. I understand, and will regret, to have take the ultimate step of blocking someone I love. That should be the end of it but alas stopping the bombardments of social media is not the end. Imagine, it gets worse, imaging opening your personal email, yes, you the fat lady, and you get an email that says.... "I think that you are in need of my help and could use my service and my products..." bad enough the first time you get it but when it goes on and on and on, and becomes a personal spam attach it is no longer forgivable. I know I can call the police when people harass me personally with phone calls, can I when they do it with email? This, I thank God did not happen to me but is, and is on going, to my sister. #1 my sister like me has and does know how to loose weight, 100 up and down, but unlike me she has health issues and her Dr has told her under no circumstances to us the products being pushed at her. Just because you mean well, and think you are helping the poor fat people out, you know nothing about her health, her medical issues and her problems. NO should be no, and that is the scariest part of the new cycle to me, total personal invasion that they can't or won't stop even when asked nicely... climbing down off the soap box now....
I am a glutton to some Christians and so be it, Jack Lalane says I am not exercising enough. Now we have this wrap thing, nutri-system and on and on and on every day some mother sets her little girl up for a life time of food issues. She doesn't realize the never ending obsession with food can and does start with her in her daughters eyes. My idol, my momma does this!
So please look to God, look to Jesus for salvation stop worrying about the vanity for this world and get on with the work that leads to God and his eternal glory with you in him.... tomorrow.