The fight agaisnt fat... gone too far?
In today's society eating disorders are on the rise, people's obsession with being "thin" has lead people to completely change their lifestyles. Resources for help for people with eating disorders is hard to find, ridiculously expensive for inpatient treatment, and the waiting lists huge. My question is, is this a mental disorder that our governments need to put more funds into help those in need? Or should we all just shake our heads at the media for turing us into self concious, obsessed, followers of the famous?
Legislation regulating the personal behaviors of individuals are usually going too far (drugs, alcohol, FCC, etc.).
Government involvement with the "obesity epidemic" is another great example of how legislators, politicians, and activists believe that they know what is in the best interest of individuals more than the individuals; so much that they're willing to force anyone who doesn't comply to comply (be it as small as forcing you to pay for treatment or programs designed to reduce obesity i.e. taxes).
As for the topic description (little bit of a late edit, but noticed your response to Sulith), I'd say that proper diet is always a good thing to consider. However, if it gets in the way of your happiness, you shouldn't hold too much weight (lol, get it) to it.
If one is morbidly obese, clearly they have an addiction. But general obesity on the BMI scale isn't actually unhealthy. if you exercise a few hours a week and stop eating just before you're full, you can expect to live a long, happy life.
Being fat is a lot of nature and not just nurture. Morbid obesity, however, is more nurture.
But if you're puking your guts out or hitting the gym every day, you might have a problem (and a different kind of mental disorder).
I think the real problem comes down to basic body image with three basic perspectives.
1. The normal body image. If you start putting on a little extra weight you decide to something normal and not drastic to fix it. If you party too much over the holidays and add a pound or two, you work a little harder and take the pound or two off. It is cyclical in nature, but varies just a little bit in each direction.
2. The abnormal body image "skinny". If someone can never feel comfortable with a normal body type always feeling like they have a pound or two to lose, even if they just lost a pound or two. These people feel so self aware that they go to extremes to limit their food intake.
3. The abnormal body image "fat". If someone grows up and slowly gets "fat", while their body changes, their own image of their body doesn't change. They look at themself in the mirror and while they see their "fat" self, they almost never feel "fat". This person will never try to take the weight off because they really don't see it or care about it.
I think #2 and #3 are both mental disorders and need some level of counceling to help them gain the right image of their current state. Yes, I would not mind the governement funding this kind of a wellness program.