We have bigger-sized problems

Author: natalie  //  Category: Issues, National

I don’t drink much soda pop, never have and I’m pretty certain I never will.

Most of it’s just too sweet for me, so when I do indulge it tends to be Diet 7-Up or Sprite Zero, but those supposedly have their perils, too.

But because New York’s Mayor Bloomberg banned “large” sodas—defined as featuring more than 16 ounces of the bubbly liquid—from restaurants, street cars and movie theaters, I want to walk the streets of New York sipping an entire jug of the most calorie-laden one I can find!

I get it. Obesity is a costly problem both economic and human. But research abounds that trying to rule and regulate such a thing is unlikely to have any substantive effect on public health or weight.

That aside, what’s more disturbing about the trend of Bloomberg, who has imposed other dietary regulations, is, well… I’ll let him tell it.

In speaking to the United Nations general assembly, he said that, “Governments at all levels must make healthy solutions the default social option.” Sigh.  He continued with, “That is ultimately government’s highest duty.” Really?

Again, I get it. Being too big for our collective britches is a big—pun intended—problem.  But this smacks —pun not intended—of government overreach. Allow me to Biggie-Size my sigh. SIGH.

Anyway, the more annoyed I got over the implications of sheeple accepting this drivel “for the public good”, I got to thinking: We have been hearing about our plus-sized, impending — and already here in many locales—epidemic for the better part of the last decade.

And while the problem started here, it’s no longer isolated to the United States. Worldwide waistlines are expanding. Scholarly folks who study such things are likening it to changes two centuries ago when Europeans shot up 30 centimeters or more in height.

Are we watching the human species go through an evolutionary change?

I’ll go off on a slight tangent and smooth some feathers: I’m not talking monkey-to-man evolution (although it could be well argued we’re devolving man-to-monkey, but they may insult primates . . . I can’t win) but rather changes in a species adapting to its environment.

And our environment is abundantly supplied with easily-accessible food . . . and couches to rest our tater-shaped selves on.  No one believes that’s going to be a positive for the human race.

Evolutionary changes are typically imperceptibly slow. But in modern fashion, it’s seemingly in fast forward. In a macabre way, it’s fascinating how in less than two generations we’re seeing changes that have previously taken hundreds or thousands of years.

Scientists say the increase in height 200 years ago stayed with us, and this expansion in girth will, too.  I suppose someone, somewhere has figured out how to keep supplying our seemingly insatiable appetites. I’m a little sad that I won’t live to see it all unfold.

Larger, hungrier minds will have to sort it all out. Because while I agonize over many Biggie-Sized problems, I’m quite happy to report that how much soda you drink never crosses my mind, nor should it.

© 2012 Natalie Whatley

Leave a Reply