Other people may have a lot to do what is on your plate, but you and only you are in charge of what you eat. Also, you and only you are in charge of what you do. There is an infinity of things that influence everything we do and much of the time we have very little influence over what that will be. There are forces like gravity to which we must submit, and many people will complain about how arbitrary nature seems to be. And yet, nature operates under the most fine-grained laws of behavior. It is beings with a choice of action that are arbitrary in their relationship to us, and humans are the most arbitrary of all. Yet, even with human beings, there is a lot of predictable actions and reactions that we can depend upon in almost all situations. Generally, people follow the Golden Rule, and if we treat them well they will treat us well.
It is when we come to our relationship with our own selves that we have the most flexibility and the most problems. The specific problem I have been thinking about these last few months is the food we people eat and tend to overeat. Why are people overeating and at the same time are reported to be spending five hundred billion dollars per year to eat less? Famine is the natural thing being avoided by overeating, but nearly all of the billion obese people are not facing a famine at present, and probably have never faced one in their entire lives. That they don’t want to be obese is proven by the fact that they spend so much money trying to drop the excess weight. They are asking for help. Desperately asking for help! They are not getting help, they are getting advice, but the advice is impossible for them to follow as is proven by the obvious fact that billions of people are clearly getting heavier every year. They know what is best for them but they can’t do what is best for them. Why? Their advisors spread the guilt deep and say it is because of these people’s lack of willpower. And yet, people of normal bodily weight are exerting no willpower at all to maintain their healthy status. It isn’t willpower that is lacking, it is a totally wrong approach by the diet and medical industries that is the problem. People are being told the wrong things to do.
“You and only you are in charge of what you eat” is an obvious statement and would seem to be spreading even more guilt upon obese people. It is the total number of calories eaten versus those burned by the person’s body that determines the gain or loss of weight. Probably true to the last calorie, but you can’t see calories. So what is the problem, and more important, what is the solution?
I will get to that and it will be easy and fun.