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Fat: Exploding the Myths Paperback – 21 Aug 1998
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As the title suggests, this book sets out to uncover the myriad reasons why we have become a world obsessed with fat and weight. Not just in western civilisations (although apparently stemming from them) but increasingly in developing countries too, our intense preoccupation with our weight seems to be in direct proportion to our expanding waistlines. Just exactly what is going on here?
So Colles, in this accompaniment to the ITV documentary series, poses the question to a cross section of individuals involved in or afflicted by this growing obesity pandemic. Including excerpts of interviews with doctors, nutritionists, dieters, and members of the food, fashion and cosmetic industries, Colles delineates and dissects the theories given to why we are steadily getting fatter whilst more money than ever is being spent in the burgeoning diet industry.
Constantly referring to statistics, some of which are pretty grim (did you know there are 300,000 food related deaths in the UK each year, and that 95% of people who lose weight gain it all back?) Colles studies the lifestyles, ideals, hereditary genes and industries (food and fashion) that are blamed for our increasing size. She goes on to explore the ways we are trying to beat our fat--from diets, to evangelical fitness regimes, to the many companies who are spending billions in the race to find the fat-buster magic bullet. The last section of the book touches on what it means to be fat, and if it possible to be both fat and healthy--and even beautiful.
Although proffering no real answers or cures, this book underlines the seriousness of this problem and raises real concern at the growing section of society who are affected, perhaps most worryingly the younger dieting generation. Realising how much the fashion and food industries generate a truly schizophrenic approach to weight certainly leaves a bitter taste, and culpability for this modern problem seems to lay more with them than the individuals who are sadly left to face society's stigma. --Abi Frisby
Fat sets out to explore all sides of this complex and controversial subject, and to provide answers for all of the questions raised. Interviews with sumo wrestlers to anorexic teenagers bring the book alive.'
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