Friday, December 9, 2011

Hunger can cause obesity

Keith Olbermann of the Current TV show Countdown named Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum today's Worst Person in the World because of content in a speech he gave in Iowa saying that obesity that is common among poor people shows that they are not really going hungry.

There's a svelte middle-class person inside every homeless person.
Olbermann quoted Santorum, via an Iowa newspaper: Said Santorum with respect to Food Stamps, "If hunger is a problem in America, then why do we have an obesity problem among the people who we say have a hunger program?

The answer to Santorum's question is that obesity is commonly caused by hunger, as contrary to commonsense as that may seem to many.

Quoting the Food Research & Action Center [as Olberman did, also] [emphases, mine]:
Obesity is a major public health problem in the U.S. While all segments of the population are affected, low-income and food insecure people are especially vulnerable due to the additional risk factors associated with poverty, including limited resources, limited access to healthy and affordable foods, and limited opportunities for physical activity. Even individuals who are highly motivated can have difficulty eating healthy and being active if their environments do not support or allow such behaviors (Institute of Medicine, 2009).

In addition, households with limited resources to buy enough food often try to stretch their food budgets by purchasing cheap, energy-dense foods that are filling – meaning that they try to maximize their calories per dollar in order to stave off hunger. Those who are food insecure may also overeat when food does become available, resulting in chronic ups and downs in food intake that can contribute to weight gain. This is especially a problem for low-income women, who often restrict their food intake to protect their children from hunger.
And by the way, obesity is common among those who eat at Loaves & Fishes for these reasons. Loaves and Fishes which claims with pride that it does without government funding means, too, it does without nutritional oversight. Loaves & Fishes serves large quantities of cheap, energy-dense foods because of cheap, dense administrators at that charity.

2 Comments:

OpenID takesatoll said...

Years ago when I started a small business I was short on money and food and my insensitive idiot brother said, "then why aren't you losing weight?" (Idiot) I said to him, "do you know how expensive lean meat and fresh fruits and vegetables are?"
-
Ramen noodles are 7 for $1 and they are fried before you cook them.

December 17, 2011 at 12:18 PM  
Blogger Thomas Armstrong said...

Thanks for your words, takesatoll. The public is confused. They have the expectation that homeless people should look like Sudan refugees.

Doesn't work like that.

December 17, 2011 at 3:06 PM  

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