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My Mom Made Me Fat

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My Mom Made Me Fat

If it hadn’t been for the Big Macs that Joannie ate three times a week, she wouldn’t have gotten fat.  But, if she hadn’t been exposed while in her mother’s womb to chemicals x, y and z, Joannie wouldn’t have had the propensity to get fat.  And if Joannie’s mom had eaten more sensibly, both waistlines would be slimmer.

First Lady Michelle Obama has, admirably, put her weight (pun intended) behind a campaign against obesity. But it’s a mistake to limit the remedy to better food and more exercise. Fat people most likely are programmed to become fat before taking their first sip of milk. The manmade chemicals we encounter every day are responsible for this reprogramming.

Two of three U.S. adults are now classified as overweight. Type II diabetes has increased in like measure over the same decades, and so has heart disease. This is not a coincidence. These illnesses share common characteristics: they are triggered while in the womb by exposure to the same kinds of chemicals and the outcomes show up in adulthood. Scientists now call this pattern “the fetal origins of adult diseases.”

The most likely culprits are chemicals now grouped together under the rubric “endocrine disrupters.”  It’s been known for about two decades, though disputed by the manufacturers, that these chemicals alter the normal signaling pathways of hormones.  They knock normal development off track.  Bisphenol A (BPA) is right now the nation’s most celebrated endocrine disruptor.

Pesticides are often endocrine disruptors.  It’s just been discovered that a family of pesticides that’s among the most widely used in the world is connected to the three adult illnesses of obesity, Type II diabetes and heart disease.  This is the family of organophosphates, concocted from petroleum with an addition of phosphoric acid.

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Read more: Children, Diabetes, Diet & Nutrition, Eating for Health, General Health, Health, News & Issues, Poisoned for Profit, Pregnancy, , , , ,

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Alice Shabecoff

Alice Shabecoff is a freelance journalist focusing on family and consumer topics, and co-author of the recently published book Poisoned for Profit (Chelsea Green). Her work has appeared in The New York Times, Washington Post, Christian Science Monitor, and International Herald Tribune, among other publications. She was executive director of the National Consumers League, the country’s oldest consumer organization, and executive director of the national nonprofit Community Information Exchange.

190 comments

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11:13PM PDT on May 26, 2013

Sadly obesity causes many problems.

7:12AM PST on Nov 10, 2011

Thanks!~

5:04PM PDT on Oct 31, 2010

Read, thank you Alice.

1:53PM PDT on Oct 23, 2010

I'm sad about obese children but good health is very fragile... I have also health problems since I'm a teen... because of heredity, pesticides, nutrition... Parents have to do their best for their kids... and ...Keep going! Keep smiling!
Life is going on...

6:15PM PDT on Sep 11, 2010

noted

4:57PM PDT on Sep 9, 2010

Some people don't realize that every decision they make for their children will have an outcome. I feel so sad for obese children.

1:47AM PDT on Sep 7, 2010

I don't agree that someone who only weighs 90 pounds would be underweight. It depends on how tall the person is and other things. I knew a girl who was smaller and than I am and she had skoliosis and claimed she *could not* gain any weight though she tried her best. At the same time you can have someone weigh 200 pounds but if that person plays pro-hockey for a living and is over 190 cm that's probably a lot of muscles necessary for doing his job. That doesn't mean obese.

10:00PM PDT on Aug 25, 2010

thanks

7:59PM PDT on Aug 25, 2010

noted

6:57PM PDT on Aug 18, 2010

So terrible.

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