SCALES of justice
New Zealand Woman's Weekly|November 23, 2020
MICHELE A’COURT WEIGHS IN ON THE REAL CAUSES OF OBESITY

I’ve been thinking a lot about what it takes to achieve and maintain a healthy weight ever since obesity became a topic of conversation near the end of the election campaign. So, grab yourself some frozen vegetables out of the freezer and do something with them, and then let’s have a little chat.

New Zealand is listed by the OECD as the third fattest country in the world, with 31% of Kiwis regarded as obese. Aotearoa sits behind only Mexico (32%) and the US (38%). Two in three Pasifika (66%) and half of Māori (48%) are obese. So collectively, we have a problem, which already suggests that we might need to look collectively for the causes and find solutions.

I’ll start with my own experience of weight loss and gain. Like a lot of women, my weight has fluctuated over the years – weight “loss” is something that happens when I work really hard at it, weight “gain” is something that seems to happen by stealth. I don’t feel like I’m doing anything differently – unaware that I’m either eating more or exercising less – but suddenly my pants feel tight and someone will say, “You’re looking well”, which is code for, “You’re chunkier than you were last time I saw you.”

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