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By Joe Lindley curated from -

HBO: The Weight of the Nation Films Part 2: Choices

The second film in the series poses a question that almost anyone who’s struggled with excess weight has asked, if only in jest: For all the remarkable high-tech tools available to medicine, for all the billions of dollars in drug research, there’s still no highly effective medication to prevent or reverse obesity – why?
Researchers are, in fact, developing and evaluating strategies to help people reach and maintain a healthy weight, so that they can look forward to healthier lives. Diet is a part of the equation, but most name-brand diets promise quick, dramatic rewards and gloss over the long-term effort needed to keep weight off. Maintaining weight loss is a challenge, and success requires sustained changes in our food and physical activity.

In the 2nd film of the Weight of the Nation series, HBO reviews what people are doing to lose weight.

Unfortunately, HBO chose to push the “calorie is a calorie” (also called the “calories in vs. calories out”) dogma for losing weight, which discounts the value of carbohydrate restriction in losing weight.  This is a huge disservice to the public, as the low carb approach is so much more effective and healthy as a weight loss technique than any other.  It also makes dieting much more tolerable and therefore likely to lead to sustained weight loss.

A couple of very good points made in the film:

  • There is a huge health benefit that can be obtained by losing just 7% of a person’s current weight.  It’s a powerful idea as it may lead some to take that first step – just get 7% off, see the results from that, and then maybe do it again!
  • The film took full aim at juice and sugared sodas and drinks as the worst contributors to obesity.  Well said!
  • Exercise was also called out as NOT the solution for losing weight.  It is excellent for helping to maintain weight, but only a helpful side-benefit during weight loss.  Adjusting diet is the main way to lose weight.  Exercise just helps – and is of course an aid in improving health.
  • Stress is a significant contribution to obesity.
  • There were several other very good ideas on what helps in losing weight.  Watch the film to find out what they are!

Although I had an issue or two with this film, it is inspiring.   I’d suggest it to anyone who wants to lose weight.

You can view the film online here, or below.

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