National Eating Disorder Week- Fat Genes or Fat Jeans?
It’s National Eating Disorder Week. We should admit as a nation, we have one... and we need to get busy with staging an intervention. Any life lost is tragic. We lose approximately 200 lives to anorexia ever year, yet hundreds of lives EVERY DAY to obesity.
Should we Blame Our Genes??
Genes have a lot of explaining to do if they're to be blamed for a tripling in child obesity in just three decades... Not to mention, these fat genes must be affecting everyone in the house, as 30-50% of America's dogs and cats are overweight... 
None of us would be here today if we weren't good at bingeing and storing fat... Only the the genetics to survive famine have made it this far. So the question now is after eons of surviving scarcity, which genes will survive abundance? 
Darwin seems to have an answer: Obesity hinders fertility, pregnancy and delivery, and results in a higher incidence of birth defects. 
As someone who comes from a long line of obesity, I know the deck can be stacked against us, which makes it even more crucial that restaurants and food producers list all calories and ingredients--and purge their recipes of obesity- and disease-accelerators; that marketing of junk food to minors be 100% off limits; that serving soft drinks to minors be 100% off limits; that junk food be expelled from all publicly-funded institutions and daycare centers; that we stop subsidizing corn, cattle, etc. and if we subsidize at all, we make fresh produce cheaper and accessible to all. 
In addition, all community-planning should include a vital pro-health agenda including safe walks to school, bike paths, walking and hiking trails, etc. (This seems to be happening... hooray!) 
And we need to stop debating whether or not obesity is bad. It is. Just like smoking. Sure, there will be some exceptions. But most will end up sick. Let's do everything we can to reduce the risks of disease by promoting daily exercise and wholesome ingredients. While adults have the freedom to do whatever they like with their bodies, let's avert this crisis from the path of children and dedicate ourselves to PREVENTION. 
There are plenty of folks out there living healthfully in defiance of their "Fat Genes." 
MeMe Roth
President, NAAO
Monday, February 25, 2008