Monday, October 29, 2007

The Big, Bad, O: The Brutality of Obesity

When reading the cover of Francine Hemway’s book, The Big, Bad, O: The Brutality of Obesity, I was surprised by the statement: This book is not for the obese. Most books that deal with obesity are designed to provide a weight loss solution. As a victim of childhood obesity that continued for four decades before finding a way to overcome it, Francine Hemway takes a much more honest look at the state of obesity in America.

Hemway, a former public school teacher and district superintendent presents a no nonsense approach to the effects of obesity in US culture. The premise of the book is to provide an account of how and why obesity has become an established way of life. As Hemway points out, “Only in a man made habitat does obesity exist. It is against the laws of nature for obesity to exist.”

By providing an in-depth analysis of how America has come to a population where 64.5% of adult Americans are overweight or obese, as well as delivering a factual account of the rising statistics of obesity in adults and children, a clear picture is drawn that shows that no one particular group, company, or organization, can be held responsible for obesity. Hemway explains that individual and societal denial, and political correctness, has resulted in a society that allows obesity to be treated as an acceptable condition. She points out the numerous ways that we are now accommodating the obese and how we have allowed the establishment of a 30 billion dollar a year industry designed to profit from the obese. She explains a rising new culture that promotes being over weight and obesity as a normal way of living. As society’s attitude towards obesity becomes more compliant, Hemway explains the dangers to American health, well being, and the devastating financial impacts of catering to an obese society.

Told from the heart, with an important mission to educate politicians, families, educators, medical professionals, and every American, Hemway emphasizes the need to take action instead of worrying about being politically correct. Her genuine concern has led her to submit legislation to Congress that does not invoke more discussion about obesity, but will result in action intended to end obesity.

As a follow up to her book, Beauty and the Yeast Beast, From Fat to Fairy Tale, where
Hemway tells how she lost the weight and kept it off by eliminating yeast from her body, The Big, Bad, O provides a candid analysis of the state of obesity in American society and the grave consequences that everyone will suffer if our social attitudes do not change and obesity continues to move into the norm. Hemway explains that there is no quick fix, magic pill, diet book, or diet program that will end obesity. It all comes down to overcoming denial, political correctness, and employing the simple and effective concept: “Expend more energy than you consume.” As Hemway states, “Obesity is a choice.” If society accepts this epidemic as a way of life, the consequences will be detrimental to America’s future.

The Big, Bad, O is a definite must read. The information provided is well researched and the statistics and facts provided will not only cause alarm, but will make you reflect on your own perceptions of obesity and how it affects every single American. It is an honest, well presented, and personal book that will hopefully inspire change.

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ISBN: 0978623428
ISBN-13: 9780978623425
Format: Paperback
Publisher: Florida Institute of Mold, Incorporated
Pub. Date: January 2006
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