Author Topic: As women get bigger, models get smaller  (Read 24078 times)

Offline milomorris

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Re: As women get bigger, models get smaller
« Reply #60 on: June 21, 2012, 06:01:06 pm »
What I'm saying is that economic level makes a difference in the likelihood of your being overweight, and that has been a cultural transformation over the past 50 years or so. If you don't think so, I'm sorry, but you're just incorrect.

While I understand that there is a relationship between poverty and poor health, I see the relationship as a correlation rather than a causation. And as you have noted, more than money comes into play to make the difference.
  The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.

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Offline serious crayons

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Re: As women get bigger, models get smaller
« Reply #61 on: June 22, 2012, 12:00:18 pm »
While I understand that there is a relationship between poverty and poor health, I see the relationship as a correlation rather than a causation. And as you have noted, more than money comes into play to make the difference.

OK, then, what do you see as the causal relationship? If X is correlated with Y, then either X causes Y, or Y causes X, or Z causes both X and Y. Or some mixture of those.

Does poverty "cause" obesity? Not directly. A rich person can eat poorly, avoid exercise, etc. A poor person can eat healthily, exercise, etc. As I've said.

However, poor people, as I've also said, 1) have a harder time accessing healthy food 2) are less likely to be well-educated about healthy eating 3) may have a harder time moving around their neighborhoods 4) live in a culture in which heavier weight is more socially accepted ... and so on. There are many factors. My point is that poverty does cause those things I just mentioned, and those things cause obesity. There's just little room for argument there.

Since we're sharing our own experiences, let's take my middle-class situation. I have two upscale grocery stores within five minutes' drive of my house that, needless to say, have excellent produce and meat sections. I have a lower-priced grocery store 10 minutes' drive away that has pretty decent produce and OK meat. If I take my dog on a walk, I can walk 15 minutes in one direction and come to a path around a quiet lake, or 10 minutes in the other direction and come to a walking/biking path along a wooded creek that eventually leads to a big park with a waterfall, or 15 minutes in still another way and come to three lakes that are linked together by bustling biking and walking paths and parks, including a rose garden, a Japanese peace garden and a bird sanctuary. I can walk around one lake in about an hour, or bike around all three in about that same time. In between these destinations are houses -- some of them, like mine, smallish and others literal mansions -- many (of both sizes) with beautiful landscaped lawns and lovely gardens. In 10 years of walking around my neighborhood, I've never felt unsafe except once or twice walking alone in the dark and encountering someone -- but even then, nothing happened, all was fine. For years, I subscribed to Cooking Light, and even now tend to look through healthy recipes in other magazines or the newspaper or the web. There's an Anytime Fitness five minutes in one direction, a Snap Fitness in another, a YMCA 15 minutes away, and so on. And yes, there is some cultural pressure to stay thin -- more, I would guess, than in some neighborhoods but far less than, say, in Hollywood.

So how many of those factors that facilitate and encourage exercise and healthy eating does your hypothetical resident of da 'hood enjoy?




Offline Luvlylittlewing

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Re: As women get bigger, models get smaller
« Reply #62 on: June 22, 2012, 03:09:17 pm »
K, I'm having trouble with the quote command, but I wanted to answer your questions about "the Hood" so I'll just reply.  I don't know if where I'm living now is considered the hood, but my sister and I call it that.  Actually we live in a gentrified area of Oakland that is working class, but you'll find Victorian mansions and other homes so beautiful they'll take your breath away.  Friends and family come to visit us from all over (even a few Brokies have stayed in my home)and are amazed at the homes in my portion of "the Hood."  :) But if you go several blocks to the east of where we live you'll find yourself in the serious hood, or as we call it, "Lower Bottom."  Maya Angelou lived there. Lower Bottom is populated with goverment housing (we no longer use the term "project" in Oakland) but I'll admit, most of them were just remodeled and look like town houses. I wouldn't mind living in some of them.  But this is still considered the hood because it is low income, and as racially diverse as just about anywhere in the United States.  There are older homes in Lower Bottom, but many are over 100 years old and in disrepair.  Are there resources to provide healthy habits in the hood?  Well, Whole Foods (yeah I know most poorer people don't frequent Whole Foods)  Safeway, and Lucky  supermarkets are 5 minutes away, and most residents of low income housing have decent cars.  Shoreline Park, a newly developed park with great view of the Bay and SF is smack dab in the hood.  Lake Merritt (also being renovated) is within walking distance.  Lake Merritt has several fitness programs, a lawn bowling club and walking/running trails.  Lake Temescal is in a better neighborhood but is less than 10 minutes away from the hood.  Deep in the hood you'll find organic produce stores, several farmers markets.  This is just off the top of my head.  I could go on.

Offline Jeff Wrangler

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Re: As women get bigger, models get smaller
« Reply #63 on: June 22, 2012, 03:43:13 pm »
Are there resources to provide healthy habits in the hood?  Well, Whole Foods (yeah I know most poorer people don't frequent Whole Foods)  Safeway, and Lucky  supermarkets are 5 minutes away, and most residents of low income housing have decent cars.

The folks in that neighborhood are fortunate. A big problem in Philadelphia is the lack of decent grocery stores in many neighborhoods. And owning a car can be problematic even in a more affluent area such as my part of the Center City gayborhood because of narrow streets (that clearly predate the automobile era), inadequate parking, and high insurance rates.
"It is required of every man that the spirit within him should walk abroad among his fellow-men, and travel far and wide."--Charles Dickens.

Offline Luvlylittlewing

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Re: As women get bigger, models get smaller
« Reply #64 on: June 22, 2012, 03:51:58 pm »
Jeff, the insurance rates are high, but the people in my neighborhood still drive some very high-end cars.  One of my neighbors just bought a sleek new Mercedes.  I mean, people in Cali love their cars.  And gas is higher here in the Bay Area than anywhere else in the US, but people pay the prices and don't grumble much.  The streets are wide and the parking is plentiful. 

Offline milomorris

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Re: As women get bigger, models get smaller
« Reply #65 on: June 22, 2012, 03:54:10 pm »
OK, then, what do you see as the causal relationship? If X is correlated with Y, then either X causes Y, or Y causes X, or Z causes both X and Y. Or some mixture of those.

I think there a whole bunch of Zs in play.

However, poor people, as I've also said, 1) have a harder time accessing healthy food 2) are less likely to be well-educated about healthy eating 3) may have a harder time moving around their neighborhoods 4) live in a culture in which heavier weight is more socially accepted ... and so on. There are many factors. My point is that poverty does cause those things I just mentioned, and those things cause obesity. There's just little room for argument there.

The items that you list are certainly more prevalent in poorer communities. But with the possible exception of #3, people of higher incomes can also be affected by these factors. As far as #3 goes, crime makes it harder for people in poor neighborhoods to get out and exercise. Out here where I live, there are no sidewalks, so people have to drive to a park just to take a walk. The local township supervisors have engaged a pair of recreation consultants, and they have advised us that the lack of sidewalks is a barrier to exercise.

I think that the culture that has evolved in poor neighborhoods puts eating well and exercising in a low-priority category...even for those who can afford it.

Since we're sharing our own experiences, let's take my middle-class situation. I have two upscale grocery stores within five minutes' drive of my house that, needless to say, have excellent produce and meat sections. I have a lower-priced grocery store 10 minutes' drive away that has pretty decent produce and OK meat. If I take my dog on a walk, I can walk 15 minutes in one direction and come to a path around a quiet lake, or 10 minutes in the other direction and come to a walking/biking path along a wooded creek that eventually leads to a big park with a waterfall, or 15 minutes in still another way and come to three lakes that are linked together by bustling biking and walking paths and parks, including a rose garden, a Japanese peace garden and a bird sanctuary. I can walk around one lake in about an hour, or bike around all three in about that same time. In between these destinations are houses -- some of them, like mine, smallish and others literal mansions -- many (of both sizes) with beautiful landscaped lawns and lovely gardens. In 10 years of walking around my neighborhood, I've never felt unsafe except once or twice walking alone in the dark and encountering someone -- but even then, nothing happened, all was fine. For years, I subscribed to Cooking Light, and even now tend to look through healthy recipes in other magazines or the newspaper or the web. There's an Anytime Fitness five minutes in one direction, a Snap Fitness in another, a YMCA 15 minutes away, and so on. And yes, there is some cultural pressure to stay thin -- more, I would guess, than in some neighborhoods but far less than, say, in Hollywood.

So how many of those factors that facilitate and encourage exercise and healthy eating does your hypothetical resident of da 'hood enjoy?

Mostly, da 'hood enjoys few of those features. If I may again point back to my local township and their recreation plans, I can tell you that if you add up all the parks, the school district athletic fields, and the Commonwealth game lands, we have around 8,000 acres of recreational space within a 10-mile radius. There are miles and miles of walking and bike paths. There are 5 gyms that I'm aware of. Yet fitness around here doesn't appear to be any better than anywhere else. And as I pointed out during the township meeting, when I lived in Philadelphia, there was a park with a track and a basketball court on the far side of the block where my apartment was situated. Many people used the park, but rarely did one see an overweight adult or child making use of the space. So I suggested that part of the money the township spends toward recreation be reserved for public service campaigns to encourage people to get out and use the facilities.

For people who live in neighborhoods that are not as feature-rich as yours, staying fit and healthy takes greater effort. There is no doubt about that. But a low-income person who lives in a feature-poor neighborhood still has options. Its a matter of finding which options are available, and putting them to use.  
  The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.

--Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Offline milomorris

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Re: As women get bigger, models get smaller
« Reply #66 on: June 22, 2012, 04:12:49 pm »
The folks in that neighborhood are fortunate. A big problem in Philadelphia is the lack of decent grocery stores in many neighborhoods. And owning a car can be problematic even in a more affluent area such as my part of the Center City gayborhood because of narrow streets (that clearly predate the automobile era), inadequate parking, and high insurance rates.

Many big cities have large populations who do not drive, nor do they own a car. In cities with decent public transit, children can grow up outside "car culture." Growing up in Boston, I started learning the public transit system as a young boy because that's primarily how mom got my brothers and I from place to place. As a teenager, I learned to use public transit to navigate the suburbs. When I moved to Philadelphia, public transit was even easier to use than in Boston. And they have even better suburban access here. As a result, I didn't have a driver's license until I was 38.
  The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.

--Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Offline Luvlylittlewing

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Re: As women get bigger, models get smaller
« Reply #67 on: June 22, 2012, 04:21:40 pm »
The public transit system here is pretty good but that doesn't stop people from driving.  Most people here are licensed by the age of 18.  I believe the earliest one could get a license was 16 but they added a few years, as far as I know.

Offline serious crayons

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Re: As women get bigger, models get smaller
« Reply #68 on: June 22, 2012, 06:24:49 pm »
K, I'm having trouble with the quote command, but I wanted to answer your questions about "the Hood" so I'll just reply.  I don't know if where I'm living now is considered the hood, but my sister and I call it that.  Actually we live in a gentrified area of Oakland that is working class, but you'll find Victorian mansions and other homes so beautiful they'll take your breath away.  Friends and family come to visit us from all over (even a few Brokies have stayed in my home)and are amazed at the homes in my portion of "the Hood."  :) But if you go several blocks to the east of where we live you'll find yourself in the serious hood, or as we call it, "Lower Bottom."  Maya Angelou lived there. Lower Bottom is populated with goverment housing (we no longer use the term "project" in Oakland) but I'll admit, most of them were just remodeled and look like town houses. I wouldn't mind living in some of them.  But this is still considered the hood because it is low income, and as racially diverse as just about anywhere in the United States.  There are older homes in Lower Bottom, but many are over 100 years old and in disrepair.  Are there resources to provide healthy habits in the hood?  Well, Whole Foods (yeah I know most poorer people don't frequent Whole Foods)  Safeway, and Lucky  supermarkets are 5 minutes away, and most residents of low income housing have decent cars.  Shoreline Park, a newly developed park with great view of the Bay and SF is smack dab in the hood.  Lake Merritt (also being renovated) is within walking distance.  Lake Merritt has several fitness programs, a lawn bowling club and walking/running trails.  Lake Temescal is in a better neighborhood but is less than 10 minutes away from the hood.  Deep in the hood you'll find organic produce stores, several farmers markets.  This is just off the top of my head.  I could go on.

Well, when I said "da 'hood," I was quoting Milo, and I realize not all 'hoods, or poor neighborhoods, are alike. And many of them do offer some health-promoting features. I would guess California would be particularly progressive in terms of healthy food options -- it's one of the few places I've been to where the grocery stores are better than here. New Orleans is less progressive that way, but its poor and rich neighborhoods are unusually geographically intermingled (often called "the checkerboard"). I lived hear da 'hood where Lil Wayne grew up. There was a great little whole-foods coop in walking distance, and his poor 'hood was no further than my middle-class 'hood (i.e., walking distance) from parks with walking and biking paths.

So when I talk about the limited options for healthy food and exercise in poorer communities, I am most definitely generalizing based on studies that have been done in metropolitan areas around the country. I'm sure there are many exceptions to them.


Offline serious crayons

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Re: As women get bigger, models get smaller
« Reply #69 on: June 22, 2012, 06:37:36 pm »
The items that you list are certainly more prevalent in poorer communities. But with the possible exception of #3, people of higher incomes can also be affected by these factors.

Of course.

Quote
I think that the culture that has evolved in poor neighborhoods puts eating well and exercising in a low-priority category...even for those who can afford it.

No doubt. As I've said, the converse is true in some wealthy neighborhoods, those in NY and LA probably being the most representative examples. The pressure to be thin is much, much higher -- therefore, more people do it. In Minnesota, which usually ranks among the top few on those state-by-state fitness rankings, the pressure is semi-high but I'm sure it's nothing compared to what Jennifer Anniston faces.

Quote
So I suggested that part of the money the township spends toward recreation be reserved for public service campaigns to encourage people to get out and use the facilities.

Sounds like a good idea. Special events might also be helpful.

Quote
For people who live in neighborhoods that are not as feature-rich as yours, staying fit and healthy takes greater effort. There is no doubt about that. But a low-income person who lives in a feature-poor neighborhood still has options. Its a matter of finding which options are available, and putting them to use.  

Of course. I've repeated now twice, I think, that it is not impossible for a poor person to follow a healthy fitness plan. Conversely, I live in a neighborhood with all those features, yet I could still stand to lose a few.

But if, as you say, it takes greater effort and the culture doesn't encourage it, fewer people are going to do it. Which is why studies show that poorer people, on average, are heavier. We're not talking about the possibility/impossibility of any individual determined person becoming fit; we're talking about the likelihood over a larger random population.