Here’s a fun video showing how it’s illegal to be obese in Japan. Let’s watch!!!
As much as I would like to go on a rant about how they should actually be exercising, and how the health nurse was a complete idiot when measuring the waist line (***I measure around the belt, and at a weird angle? Oh, okay.***), you have to admit it’s a pretty neat concept, isn’t it? For those who chose not to watch the entire thing, I’ll summarize. Employees nationwide in Japan are now mandated to get weighed and measured routinely. For those found to have a waist line that’s too large, the company gets fined. As a preventative measure, they now offer only healthy foods in the cafeterias and have daily “stretching music” piped in.
Can you imagine the field day HR departments would have over this one?? I am not sure, but I think there are some human rights issues getting violated like the new guy in “Oz” with this one. It might bring back some traumatic memories from childhood of when your mom had you stand against the door frame to see how tall you were getting. But let’s look at the premise behind it. Regular exercise and maintaining a healthy body weight increases productivity and reduces the number of sick days and usage of the company medical system. Offering healthy foods in the cafeteria and piping in stretching music can increase the quality of the work environment substantially, which will lower attrition within the corporation. So would this actually be an option to look in to??
Obesity is a massive problem right now (pardon the pun. No wait, don’t pardon it. It was intentional. Deal with it, sucka!!), and projections have more than half the population being obese within the next two decades (right now about 30% is considered obese) based on research from the Obesity Journal. Check this out.
That means we should all buy stock in Rascal scooters and diabetic supply companies now!!!
A lot of companies are waking up to the fact that fit employees make them more money!!! Microsoft has had a program in place for years that gives their employees free access to a $10,000 a year program that sees them working out in The Bellevue Health Club, meeting with a dietician, personal trainer, and psychiatrist to make sure they get healthy.
So is measuring and weighing people at work the answer? Maybe, but it doesn’t really teach the person to look after themselves or to prevent themselves from getting into a bad situation. By having the government become involved it’s just one more step down the road to having them do everything for us and living like the blobs in pods from WallE.
Fast-forward to about 1 minute into the clip to see what I’m talking about.
If we look back in time, obesity is a relatively new concern for the population as a whole. In the pre-industrial period, obesity rarely happened to anyone but the lords and royalty, because everyone worked physically demanding jobs (why do you think we have the ingrained mentality of breakfast, lunch and dinner as our main meals? Before work, lunch break and after work were the only times workers could actually get food). Royalty had very little to do physically and abundant food. They also thought bathing was beneath them and that tans were for common folk. Also that inbreeding was the “new thing” to keep blood lines pure. Maybe they didn’t have all the answers.
Can we beat this problem? Hells yeah, baby!!! But it’s going to take some work, and the loss of some conveniences. First, we have to start cooking food again. Real, unpackaged, straight from the farm kind of food. You know the kind, the stuff that actually tastes like food? Give up the restaurants and fast food crap and start eating real food and drinking water without all the flavors and sweeteners mixed in. You’ll probably wind up saving about $100-200 a month just in food costs, primarily because it’s cheaper and you won’t want to or need to eat as much. Then you can spend that money on training!!
Then, start moving. It doesn’t have to be at a gym or running (although they’ll get you there the fastest way possible. That, and you’ll look fantastic naked with some finely toned muscles, and maybe someone out there will want to see you naked and do various things with you while in such a state), it can be anything at all as long as it involves movement. Take the dog for a walk, and no, this doesn’t count.
If you’re trying to lose weight or have tried before and failed, keep trying. Find someone who can help you do it, whether it’s a dietician, doctor, or some awesome trainer whose blog you’re currently reading. Just don’t listen to anything from Jillian Michaels, because she’s full of shit.