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The Madera Tribune

The weight of the nation

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webmaster | 05/17/12

The cartons of Häagen Dazs were lined up in proper order, and I began by setting a foundation of vanilla in my plate. That is then covered with dark chocolate, not the regular plebian fare. The creation is topped off with mint chocolate chip.

I took this epicurean delight, along with the TV remote, to the sofa and put my heels up on a footstool, ready to enjoy the sinful repast while numbing my brain with some car-chase scenes or a plot involving international espionage. Instead, HBO was running its new documentary, “The Weight of the Nation,” which premiered on Monday night and concluded with Parts 3 and 4 on Tuesday.

As I watched the small screen fill with the large, round bodies of extremely obese people, the frozen snack got less and less appealing. I’m already on the borderline of “overweight” (please see box), and it was painful to watch the direction that my life might be taking.

According to the documentary, 68.8 percent of adults in this country are overweight or obese. This condition is referred to as an “epidemic” because, medically, nearly 7 of every 10 Americans have put themselves in greater danger of getting heart disease, diabetes, and a host of other ailments that will shorten their lives...


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