Australia has become the fattest nation in the world, with more than 9 million adults now rated as obese or overweight, according to a new report: Australia’s Future ‘Fat Bomb’ from Melbourne’s Baker IDI Heart and Diabetes Institute. The report shows that Australians now outweigh Americans and face a future “fat bomb” that could cause a vast increase in sickness, premature deaths and place a huge burden on our health system.
The latest figures show 4 million Australians — or 26% of the adult population — are now obese compared to an estimated 25% of Americans. A further 5 million Australians are considered overweight.
But soft bodies are not our only problem. These statistics show that many Aussies also have soft minds! In other words, we know what to do but we just don’t do it.
There is no lack of information on the importance of a balanced, healthy diet and regular exercise. We all know these things are important but for whatever reason over half of us do little or nothing about it. We lead sedentary lives; spend countless hours watching TV while snacking on unhealthy processed foods; and think that the five food groups are pizza, chocolate, coke, French fries and KFC.
On the flip side of this is another problem – obsession with body image. In the last decade there have been approx 40,000 surgical procedures related to weight loss. Fad diet books often fill the Top 10 most sold books and we are constantly bombarded with conflicting information about what foods are good and bad for us. Many guys are aiming at the false ideal of looking like the cover model on Men’s Health magazine – after all, happiness is a six-pack is it not? Women are confronted with pictures of skinny models and told they need to look like this as well. What is rarely understood is how these people get to look like this in the first place – a combination of good genes, hard work, extreme dieting and airbrushed photos (that’s right, most of these men and women don’t even look like there own photo!).
The Bible teaches us to look after our bodies; after all, they are the temple of the Holy Spirit. Learn to eat healthily. Find an exercise that you enjoy – and that is age-appropriate – and do it 2 or 3 times a week. But please don’t buy into the media image of the beautiful person. True beauty is what emanates from the inside of you and it is that which will last forever – long after that beautiful body of yours has returned to the substance from which it was made – dust!