I struggle with this on a regular bais. 325lb+ me would have been elated to be the size that I am. Thanks to fitspo, thinspo, and even people in my life who talk about my size and weight — I am always trying to be thinner and fitter. Not for me, not in a health way — but to “fit in”. Thanks to Kate for putting my feelings into words.
I’ve been a larger person for the great majority of my life. I’ve never experienced being someone who has teeny little invisible-to-others flaws they pick apart in the mirror. In fact, for most of my adult life I thought it would just be fantastic to wear a size 14 so I could shop somewhere that sold clothes I liked. I never coveted a “thigh gap” or a stomach with so little fat you could see my abdominal muscles. I thought it would be great if my thighs didn’t chafe when I walked from all the rubbing.
The closest I ever got to the nit-picking your body phase was at the end of my weight-loss and the year that followed. I flew past original goals, to wear that size 14 and be able to walk anywhere I wanted to without getting out of breath or chafing my thighs. I was wearing…
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*** This post appears on a blog that I am required to write for a class that at this point in the semester I only marginally tolerate. However — I thought it was a good post. That and it took me long enough to write I thought I should get a few more miles out of it. We are required to write in a “What; So What; Now What” format — which you will see below. However — the point is that we have a major policy issue on our hands. Food insecurity. What in the hell we do with it — I don’t know. As you can see from the end, I’m mad as hell and I don’t have an answer. This problem is not as simplistic as organizational change. It won’t be solved by taking a personality inventory on how you solve problems. This is a real issue — where real people in this nation are hungry, sometimes hungry, or are unhealthy due to their ability to purchase foods [that is not just obesity, but also developmentally challenged due to malnutrition]. So what do we do — and is the nation hungry enough to care about this issue? ****
For most Americans — the idea of hunger conjures up a photo of a modern day Christian missionary in sub-sahara Africa. The man or woman is pleading with you to open your purse and sponsor a child for a few cents a day. Then they pan to a small child who looks completely emaciated and devastated. Videos like the one above are truly heartbreaking. However, is this the only face of hunger? Is this the only face of people who are searching for their next meal? No.
“I have enough to pay my rent, but not enough for food.” –“Who’s Hungry in America” Second Harvest
There are people right here in the greatest Nation, who are hungry and/or food insecure. As of 2006, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has introduced language to describe various ranges of food security and insecurity. The USDA now defines food insecurity as: “the condition assessed in the food security survey and represented in USDA food security reports–is a household-level economic and social condition of limited or uncertain access to adequate food.” Hunger is defined by the USDA as: “an individual-level physiological condition that may result from food insecurity.” (Source: USDA Economic Research Service, “Definition of Food Security“) The ranges the USDA has adopted are as follows:
Food Security: High food security (old label=Food security): no reported indications of food-access problems or limitations; Marginal food security (old label=Food security): one or two reported indications–typically of anxiety over food sufficiency or shortage of food in the house. Little or no indication of changes in diets or food intake. Food Insecurity: Low food security (old label=Food insecurity without hunger): reports of reduced quality, variety, or desirability of diet. Little or no indication of reduced food intake. Very low food security (old label=Food insecurity with hunger): Reports of multiple indications of disrupted eating patterns and reduced food intake. [SOURCE]