Posted by: matt25 | June 10, 2009

Workers’ Compensation Industry Worried About Obesity Claims

The percentage of the population considered obese increased from 12 percent in 1990 to more than 26 percent in 2007. By the year 2020, 40 percent of men and 43 percent of women are predicted to be obese, with more than 70 percent of both men and women predicted to be overweight. And the numbers are growing.

via Workers’ Compensation Industry Worried About Obesity Claims.

As I was reading this article in today’s issue of the Insurance Journal I couldn’t help but wonder why.  In a culture that is consumed by dieting, has a health club near to just about anywhere, and a highly rated TV Show which has spawned “Biggest Loser” competitions in families, social clubs, and workplaces… why is obesity on the rise.

I am sure there are a number of studies that examine various factors such as nutrition and sedentary lifestyles and that those things are valid considerations.  I am thinking about another possible component though.  It has to do with relationship.

I think that in my own struggle with being overweight I am seeing that I do not have the proper relationship with food in my life.  I eat because I am bored, or because I am at a social function, or because it is my habit to eat popcorn at a movie.  Often I am not eating because my body needs the energy and nutrients to be healthy.

What would I think of someone who kept pumping gas into his car when the tank was full because he enjoyed pumping gas or was in the habit of pumping gas?  It would be sheer lunacy.  Yet that is what so many of us do with our bodies.  Our desire to eat doesn’t automatically shut off as soon as the tank is full though.  So what do we do to be proactive in correcting our eating habits?

I think we need to examine our relationship with food and see why it is that we are eating.  Are we really hungry or are we looking for comfort, relief from stress, perhaps to be entertained?  Is it possible that we are trying to fill a hunger that is psychological, emotional, or even spiritual rather than physical?  It is time for me to take a good hard look at that and address each hunger seperately and with a proper healthy response.  Putting food, my interactions with the world, and with my God into right relationship so that I move towards ease rather than dis-ease in life.  I think I had better start with prayer and ask for the grace to go down this road with openess and wisdom.


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