Sunday, August 30, 2009

Fat Doctor "Weighs" In

Just heard about a Time Mag article (thanks Jack) that claims exercise doesn't impact wt loss. In my long weight loss journey of at least 40 years the ONLY way I've lost weight and kept it off was exercise. And lots of it. As soon as I stopped it all came back. The old recommendation of "exercise 30 minutes at least 5 times a week" to lose weight never worked either. I see the new recommendation is 60 minutes 5-7 days/wk. And that's at least what it takes for me. I don't trust the media to give me information on food, health, exercise and diet. And the "scientific" studies and medical journals aren't much better.

As an overweight family doc (can you spell oxymoron?) I struggle with food, diet, exercise and health on several levels. The guilt & shame of being overweight in a society fixated on
"thin" (ever realize that fat jokes are the only politically correct group left?) is multiplied by the fact that I of all people should know better. I'm no example for my patients. (but can relate to their stuggles with weight) I also am frustrated with the confusion within the medical community on this issue.

From docs and the medical community there's so much conflicting and misinformation. (I'd say they don't know JackSh*t but I've already mentioned Jack) Most doctors either can't understand why their overweight pts continue to overeat because they've never faced the struggle, or, like me, have the same battle and haven't solved it for themselves.
The first really valid explaination I've found is from Dr Kessler's book End to Overeating. He took on the food industry when he was head of the FDA and has personally struggled with overeating. I saw myself in the first pages of his book and for the first time in my life have stopped beating myself up for overeating and blaming myself for eating my way into diabetes.

In the 11 days since I started this blog and my commitment to my wt loss journey, I found the wt loss blog community and started reading other blogs. During that short time I've learned more about the process, motivation, and inspiration than I ever did from the official medical party line. Sean, Irene & Jack have become daily must reads. And thanks to Coley (the first to comment on my blog so who will always be near and dear in my heart) and the others who follow and offer support.

And now that I've sounded off, I'm going out to exercise. Screw the Times.



  1. I've read the End to Overeating and also In Defense of Food along with many others and they have more sense packed between the pages than I've ever gotten from "mainstream" media.
    While I was in the hospital I watched Michael Pollan on YouTube for several hours a day ... time well spent.
    I definitely agree about the exercise being an important component for successful weight loss and maintenance. It just plain makes me feel so good as well.
    Welcome to Blogland!

  2. I was nodding like a bobblehead through your entire post.

  3. Be careful Jack - don't want ya to tweak the rubber band in your neck like ya did to your back!

  4. This post was amazing. You have put words to my confusion! lol I never know where to turn for accurate information, whom to trust, what's right, what's wrong...it's crazy.

    I struggle with exercise. I did great this spring, but I will pull every excuse out of my hat to not do it. I do know that when I exercised in the past, my weight held steady. Without, I gained.

    I get confused because my aim is to not only improve my fitness, I want to lower my triglycerides. Some say to exercise hard and duration isn't as important, some say moderate but duration counts.

    Who do you believe?

    I look forward to reading your blog. Welcome to the blog world where the support is amazing, the inspiration tremendous, and friendships are formed from common struggles.

  5. Yes there is a lot of conflicting and confusing info out there. I don't want to start giving out medical advise on this blog and you should realize that I struggle with this like everyone else.
    That said - I've found that I have to exercise at least 50 better 60 minutes a day to lose weight; and that's consistant with the newest recommendation. I think intensity is somewhat important - but I pace myself so I can get the time in.
    If you're confused, I ABSOLUTELY recommend "In Defense of Food" a real eyeopener. So is "End to Overeating" Both pictured on my blog.