A Paper Wheel Is Gonna Cure Obesity, Y’all

No, seriously. According to MSNBC, a lil’ paper wheel will be distributed to doctors in West Virginia in the hopes that it can curb the obesity levels in the state.

…The wheel — a body mass index test — will be distributed to thousands of doctors across the state, and that it will help halt West Virginia’s obesity problem, which cost taxpayers nearly $200 million last year.

Uh huh. So, these doctors will be using a test that isn’t exactly accurate in even determining how fat a person is to help halt the “obesity problem”? Are y’all as lost as I am?

Now, if other states have had access to the BMI stats, and apparently obesity is on the rise (if they say so, whatever), how the hell do these other doctors figure this lil paper wheel will do anything? Or is there some other motive?

For state government, the concern is the health of its residents, but it also a matter of dollars and cents. The state’s Medicaid agency spends about $100 million on obesity-related costs annually, while obesity cost the state Public Employees Health Insurance agency $93 million last year, about 18 percent of its budget.

Now, perhaps it’s just me, but I was under the impression that obesity was a symptom of certain diseases, as opposed to the cause. I was also under the impression that there has yet to be a definitive link between fat and illness. Perhaps I missed that study. At any rate, I see the real issue here…the OMGOBESITY epidemic is costing us taxpayers money! If we can control (or as they’ve eloquently said in the article “prevent”) obesity, we can save money!

*sigh* Oh, but it gets better:

The body mass index test that doctors will be trained to use is a simple calculation based on a person’s height and weight. Sondike said it’s especially crucial for young people.

It can be hard to tell if a child’s weight is a sign of early obesity or normal growth, he said.

“Kids can grow into their weight,” he said. “Kids can become leaner without losing weight because they’re growing. But if there is a risk of obesity, it’s a lot easier to stop it when they’re children than when they’re adults.”

Eh. So, they’re gonna use a test that isn’t accurate for adults on children…and this test will show if they have a risk for obesity? Really?

I thought I was gonna be snarky today…but honestly? I’m just confused. I’ll let y’all read it over. If any of y’all can make sense of it, drop me a line in the comments and let me know.

5 Responses to “A Paper Wheel Is Gonna Cure Obesity, Y’all”

  1. 1 fillyjonk
    October 30, 2007 at 2:21 pm



  2. October 30, 2007 at 3:18 pm

    OMG, FJ…you SO gave me a much needed belly laugh!

  3. November 1, 2007 at 2:48 pm

    The part about it being used on children is interesting. Recently, my oldest son was at his gastroenterologist’s and she was concerned that he had put on 6 lbs since he last saw her. He is 5′ and 150 lbs. She was starting to lecture him on eating habits, when I pointed out to her that he had started playing basketball everyday with friends, was taking a 3x week circuit training class for kids with special needs at the YMCA, and was more physically active than he has been since he first got sick. She muttered something about the weight gain being OK, since muscle weighs more than fat. I work hard on trying to give him weight neutral food advice, and incorporating HAES for him, and these Dr’s undermine it. Is if being a medically fragile 13 year old overweight boy isn’t causing enough self-esteem issues…

    Thanks, FN! I have added you to my reader. Keep up the great snark, I mean information 😉

  4. November 1, 2007 at 3:23 pm

    It amazes me sometimes how doctors act. Perhaps these doctors should add an extra interpretation to “First Do No Harm.” It should refer to mental health as well as physical.

    And welcome to the site! 🙂

  5. 5 wriggles
    November 4, 2007 at 2:47 pm

    They’re really out of ideas.

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