I seem to have watched several tv programmes in the last few weeks, that have investigated the reason why people in Britain are becoming obese. We already know what is happening in other countries, but it appears that we seem to be following the trend. Even my son, remarked that in documentaries from the 60s and 70s, he rarely observed people that appeared overweight.
I am sure that we will all have differing opinions on why this is happening, and I have listened to many over the period. Three for me stood out. Firstly, marketing and flavourings etc, from food companies. Delicious, calorie filled attractive looking food, targeted at children initially, who will develop a taste for that type of food as they grow up. Secondly, people blame lack of time to prepare a meal, so they go with fast food. Thirdly, people feel that Government should put certain restrictions on food companies to force them to comply with guidelines that are currently voluntary. ( Ineffective and meaningless!!)
To add to issues around our diet, I was then involved in discussions regarding patients and medicines, combined with attendance for appointments.The role of hospitals was discussed, and duty of care to the patient, was a commonly used phrase. Despite the fact that some patients didn’t collect their medicines as they should, or even attend appointments if requested, there was still a duty of care on behalf of the hospital and GP.
Many years ago, when we didn’t know what certain products would do to our bodies in the long term, I could understand why people continued along their path, happy in ignorance. But today, all the facts and figures are laid out in front of us, yet many of us choose to ignore them. Smoking, drinking, lack of exercise and poor diet, will almost certainly create health issues in the long run. If we then do not even attend for a hospital appointment or take medicine as prescribed, what can we expect to happen?
Life is about choice, and I think we couldn’t imagine it any other way, but so many people seem to make wrong ones in certain key areas of their life. I guess this is always going to be the way, as we have been making the same mistakes, as long as we have been on the planet. But given all the information that is readily available these days, it is frustrating to sit by and watch it happen.
Governments talk unconvincingly about using legislation to keep giant international food companies in line. They in turn argue, that it is up to the consumer to decide, what they want to put in their body. To a degree that is true, but why do they use all sorts of marketing ploys, and go to such great lengths, to truly hide what their products contain.Is this all about money? I suspect so.
In my five years of constant treatment, I have never missed an appointment, unless I have been too sick to attend, and have always taken my medication as prescribed. This certainly has a part to play in the fact that I am still alive.I decided that my team were the experts in my condition and I would be stupid not to do what they told me.I have never smoked, and now drink very little. I am not a massive eater, but certainly do not hold back on the treats! Most of my pleasures in life seem to have been taken from me, so I figure a bit of tasty food every now and again will be ok.
Instead of always looking round for people to blame, lets be more concerned with our own actions, and what results they might have.It is certainly easier, if in every situation, someone else is responsible. But life was never intended to be easy!