Leftist commentary from a mouthy bitch

Ok, maybe we overstated that obesity epidemic thingy…


Yeah, that CDC study that said obesity kills 400,000 people annually? Yeah, the real figure is closer to 26,000.

From the article: “It turns out that the 70 million Americans who are technically “overweight” have no increased mortality risk. The real problems occur only among the small percentage of Americans with a Body Mass Index of 35 or more.”

Apparently an error in the math accounts for at 35,000 of the difference. Add to that the fact that the CDC used data from 1948, that did not take into consideration updates in medical technology and treatment, even though they had more recent data in their computers at the time. So between the 35,000 math error and acknowledging advancements in medical science, their number of people who will ZOMG, DIE! from teh fatz goes from 400,000 to 26,000. That is quite the “oops” there.


To put this in perspective, in 2007 the American Cancer Society expected 559,650* people to die from cancer by the end of the year. 40,910 of those were expected to be from breast cancer, which goes undetected in fat women a lot of the time because they avoid going to the doctor because of the shaming and blaming that happens there, and the refusal of doctors to treat fat patients as patients as opposed to particularly slow children who can’t possibly just understand that they “would just get better if they lost the magic number of pounds.” Just a newsflash, cancer doesn’t care what size you wear.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS) reports that 37,428 people died in car crashes in 2007.** Sorry, no stats on how fat those at fault may or may not have been. And it’s certainly easier to avoid cars than it is for people who are genetically predispositioned to be fat to become thin.

Seriously, people. Give it up. Admit that all the haranguing of fat people, particularly women, is about the insult to your sense of aesthetics and NOT actual concern. Because if you really cared, you wouldn’t advocate dieting practices that are harmful. If you really cared, you’d listen to the research that repeatedly states that most of the health risks associated with fat are actually more readily explained by a lifetime of crash diets.

There’s more than one reason to listen to those latter studies. One is that yeah, I would very much like to scientifically get people to shut the fuck up and leave me alone. Two, the people doing the studies that show that diets don’t work aren’t going to make any money from it. They aren’t sponsored by Sara Lee or Hostess or even Frito Lay, unlike many of the obesity panic studies which are sponsored by diet companies.


3 comments on “Ok, maybe we overstated that obesity epidemic thingy…

  1. evaria
    January 9, 2009

    Huh, that’s a pretty big difference in number. Way to fuck up guys:


  2. javagoth
    January 9, 2009

    So good of them to sort of finally admit that. Nevermind my relatives in their 80’s who have been large much of their lives…


  3. legion600
    January 11, 2009

    Just so you know, that article is four years old and there were flaws in the 2005 study such as its use of people who were thin due to illness such as cancer. A 2007 follow up to the study notes:
    “Based on total follow-up, underweight was associated with significantly increased mortality from noncancer, non-CVD causes (23 455 excess deaths; 95% confidence interval [CI], 11 848 to 35 061) but not associated with cancer or CVD mortality. Overweight was associated with significantly decreased mortality from noncancer, non-CVD causes (–69 299 excess deaths; 95% CI, –100 702 to –37 897) but not associated with cancer or CVD mortality. Obesity was associated with significantly increased CVD mortality (112 159 excess deaths; 95% CI, 87 842 to 136 476) but not associated with cancer mortality or with noncancer, non-CVD mortality. In further analyses, overweight and obesity combined were associated with increased mortality from diabetes and kidney disease (61 248 excess deaths; 95% CI, 49 685 to 72 811) and decreased mortality from other noncancer, non-CVD causes (–105 572 excess deaths; 95% CI, –161 816 to –49 328). Obesity was associated with increased mortality from cancers considered obesity-related (13 839 excess deaths; 95% CI, 1920 to 25 758) but not associated with mortality from other cancers. Comparisons across surveys suggested a decrease in the association of obesity with CVD mortality over time.”
    Also, you might want to check out the Center for Consumer Freedom before you consider them a reliable unbiased source.
    From Sourcewatch.org
    “The Center for Consumer Freedom (CCF) (formerly called the “Guest Choice Network”) is a front group for the restaurant, alcohol and tobacco industries. It runs media campaigns which oppose the efforts of scientists, doctors, health advocates, environmentalists and groups like Mothers Against Drunk Driving, calling them “the Nanny Culture — the growing fraternity of food cops, health care enforcers, anti-meat activists, and meddling bureaucrats who ‘know what’s best for you.’ ”
    Donors to the Center for Consumer Freedom include Phillip Morris, Anheuser-Busch, Wendy’s, Coca-Cola, and Tyson Foods.
    You might want to check out this site
    From their mission statement:
    Healthy Weight Network provides a critical link between research and practical application on weight and eating issues. Recognizing that weight is a complex condition of increasing concern throughout the world, we are committed to bringing together scientific information from many sources, reporting controversial issues in a clear, objective manner, and the ongoing search for truth and understanding.
    Recognizing that weight is an easily exploitable health and social concern, we are further committed to exposing deception, reshaping detrimental social attitudes, and promoting health at any size. Our mission is to be a voice of integrity and insight in a field that has been much abused and neglected.


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This entry was posted on January 9, 2009 by in Uncategorized.

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