Thursday, May 25, 2006

It's not luck

I knew a kid in high school who had childhood diabetes. He had to carry a special bag with him where ever he went and on more than one occasion, I've seen him shoot up insulin. As I've always been scared of needles, I did a little research.

The first thing that I found out was it's not contagious. But unluckily for me, it's an inherited disease. I found out that there are two types, the childhood type, which is bad luck, and the adult type, which is usually caused by obesity.

I've seen a lot of diabetics since then with missing legs. That really scared me, because I walk everywhere. Walking gives me time to think.

One thing I love about California is people here love the outdoors. We have an outdoors club at work, where a bunch of us go on long hikes. California puts aside a lot of acreage for outdoor lovers, which is really cool.

There's a girl at work who went with us once and complained that the hikes are too haaaard. So, she won't be joining us in the future which is too bad for me because her excess fat is in all the right places (for now at least), so she's always fun to walk behind.

The other day, she saw me eat lunch and was appalled by how much I ate. I did a post on losing weight awhile ago and I explained that you should have large breakfasts and lunches, but small dinners if you want to lose weight (or keep it off). Before I could explain that to her, she said "you're so lucky you could eat a lot and still be slim."

It's not luck, babe. For one, calories in versus calories out. I do a lot of exercising. It's not because I'm vain and want to have that California beautiful body. It's simply going back to the diabetes thing. I have it in my family, so I can't take chances with being fat. Or kind of like the old story of the guy who only started jogging after his father died of a heart attack.

I since then set her straight. It actually is one of my pet peeves to be told I'm lucky I'm slim, because nothing could be further than the truth. It's hard work, and I don't want to die just yet.

Now, I'm not a health nut. I hate health food and won't step foot in one of those health restaurants. Their food sucks and their clientele smell bad. I'll eat organic when the price is within reason, but if it's 25% more, I'll eat the pesticides instead. Plus, you know how much I love Carl's Jr, which I found out recently the burger I like has 920 calories in the burger alone. Yummy, but not something to do more than once a week.

It all goes back to calories in versus calories out. What I consume, I burn off. I've always been thin and always will be, because I'm simply too active not to be. I am thankful to have been given a somewhat healthy body and to have fully recovered from my past injuries. I can't take chances with my weight though because of the family diabetes history.


Blogger Mybrid said...

Nice post! My father has diabetes and I know what active effort at diet means since I myself have Crohn's. While I suffer the other end of the diet spectrum (I HAVE to eat large quantities if I want to live), I know that feeling of people saying how lucky I am to be able to eat and remain thin.

It takes a lot of effort for me to remain thin and not lose more weight and look like a holocaust victim - bones and skin.

I think the only time I pass judgement on other people's eating habits is when I see someone seriously obese who eats junk food constantly and does nothing to improve their health.

5/25/2006 5:03 AM  
Blogger Scott said...

I think the idea of the California body is a myth anyway. I lived there for fifteen years, and didn't see a disproportionate number of slim and healthy people compared to anywhere else in the US where I have lived. And that covers a lot of ground. People coming to the Bay Area are always surprised at how unlike it is to its reputation, which comes from a small strip of beaches in the southern part of the state.

5/25/2006 6:06 AM  
Blogger Notta Wallflower said...

Good post - I like California for the same reasons you do. Even though Seattle has a lot of outdoor things to do, the weather doesn't always encourage one to venture out. Gotta watch out for genetics - I have heart disease on both sides of my family. :-/

5/25/2006 6:44 AM  
Blogger Bo Salisbury said...

It works the other way around for me... no breakfast, little lunch and modest dinner seems to suit my metabolism. Cut out bread and sugar... I'm on my way.

As to genetics... I have three children, each with a distinct body type. Not one of them could have the "California body" if they wanted to, simply from bone structure and such. Unfortunately, they got mine instead of their mother's. Example: I looked like a holocaust survivor after three months in the hospital... toothpick arms, little tiny legs, ribs showing and eyes bugging out of their sockets. Yet, I still weighed 180 lbs and I'm just under 6'.


PietyHill Press

5/25/2006 6:52 AM  
Blogger Sadie Lou said...

a good post. Some people are blessed with high metabolisms and they CAN eat what they want, when they want to--for awhile anyways. I used to be like that and now, after having three children, my metabolism is slower and the pounds don't come off as easily. Being slim usually comes from hard work but there are *some* people that have the best of both worlds, don't you agree?
Hi Bo!

5/25/2006 12:48 PM  
Blogger tshsmom said...

I had an aunt that lost her sight AND mind to diabetes. My grandma lost her leg. My Dad is diabetic, and I have a 50% chance of getting it. Yes, I'm careful too!
A well-balanced diet and exercise are imperative.

5/25/2006 4:55 PM  
Blogger The Zombieslayer said...

Mybrid - geez, in your case, someone saying that to you ought to be slapped. I've learned to never assume anything about anyone when it comes to diet.

As for the only time you pass judgement, agreed. That's about the only time I pass judgement too.

Scott - Well, it's exaggerated by t.v. It's like how California has so many bad stereotypes perpetuated by television. I often tell non-Californians that California is two states.

Even our beaches aren't that good. It's too cold to swim in most of California, whether the beaches are nice or not. I'd take Florida's beaches any day over ours.

Notta - Yeah, in your case, you probably want to do a lot of cardiovascular activity. As for Seattle, gorgeous outdoors. That's one thing I missed. I wish I took more pictures too.

Bo - People all have different body types and I think it's important to be comfortable with what God gives you. I'm slim because I have to be. Don't want diabetes, and it has nothing to do with looks.

Sadie - Metabolism slows down as one gets older. When mine slows down, I'll just have to work out that much harder.

So yes, you are quite correct.

Tshsmom - Wow. That's scarier than my family history. We just had people go blind and die, but the amputees I've seen have not been in my family. Still, that's enough to scare me. I like seeing things, but don't have to worry about losing my mind. Already lost that years ago. ;)

5/25/2006 6:17 PM  
Anonymous j.f. said...

Yo Zom!

Never knew you had diabetes in your family. I'm sorry to hear that.

I'm not trying to change the subject, just wondering. How old is that person and when does a woman not get called girl?

Like I said, not trying to change the subject. Just wondering. Love ya Zom!

5/25/2006 10:23 PM  
Blogger The Zombieslayer said...

J.F. - You don't have to walk on egg shells to ask a question like that. You know me better than that. I don't care.

She's early 20s, and is cute and all but still looks like a kid to me. You're close to my age, so I call you a woman. then there's a guy at work who calls me and another guy my age "young whippersnappers." So it's all relative.

Funny story, Edgar Bennett, running back for the Super Bowl winning Packers in '96 and now running backs coach, called the 1st year players "kids." One of them was 6'4" and 300 pounds. Kind of big for a kid, but then again, it's all relative.

5/25/2006 11:38 PM  
Blogger tenxinchoden said...

here's a theory...the food we eat is directly proportionate to the sickness we get

5/25/2006 11:58 PM  
Blogger The Zombieslayer said...

TC - I think it's not just a theory. More along the lines of "you are what you eat."

5/26/2006 1:06 AM  
Blogger neal said...

You are lucky in that the work you do does something to remove the weight, or keep it off in your case. I am not obese, but I do have some extra baggage. I weigh in at 170 and could use to lose about 10 lbs more but I just can't seem to do it. I work my ass off at work too. My job is like an eight hour aerobics class, I am drenched in sweat by the end of the day. I then do yardwork at home for a couple hours and on the weekends I am always busy.

I remember your post and the only thing I don't follow is eating a good sized breakfast. I do eat something, but not a big meal.

I consider myself relatively healthy though, being that I am gonna be 48 next month and I can outwork most 20 year olds.

5/26/2006 3:33 AM  
Blogger lime said...

you're smart to take family history into account. i'm adopted and have no history. which time bomb do i fear most...breast cancer? heart disease? diabetes? alzheimers?

i guess it's good that reasonably healthy living is a good prevention for most of the biggies, but i do still wonder and my adoptive family has a lot of diabetes and heart who keel over at very young ages. i want to rattle the hard drinking, smoking, overeating men in my family and say, 'don't you care enough to stick around for your family??'

the alzheimerrs is scary too. there's a history of that as well and it makes me worry every time my mom's memory this the beginning?

5/26/2006 4:09 AM  
Blogger Laura said...

I've got adult onset diabetes on my mom's side of the family (my grandmother & uncle had it). My uncle wasn't overweight, but he wasn't healthy either. Grandma got it only after she broke her knee in her 60s and her body went into a bit of a shock I guess - b/c before that she had no symptoms. Though, it's possible she had them and never knew since she also was too stubborned to go to the doctor. Anyway, I totally agree. Obesity is one of the leading causes of preventable death. I'm in no way "fit" but I see some people walking around and I have to wonder how someone can get THAT huge? Some people have genetic problems that cause obesity - but others just plain didn't take the time or effort to pay attention to what they eat. It's worse now with gastric bypass surgery - which is now the only "cure" for diabetes. My aunt on my dad's side had that a couple years ago - she lost weight - but she's still pretty large.

5/26/2006 5:12 AM  
Blogger The Zombieslayer said...

Neal - Probably a good thing you have that extra ten pounds. The body sometimes wants to store extra weight for emergencies.

Funny, my father was the same way when he was your age. I remember him playing basketball with us and a lot of my friends would quit and he'd still be running up and down the court. People with endurance have good hearts and good hearts are the surest way for a long life, because over 50% of people on Earth to this day still die of heart disease.

Lime - Not having a family background to use as a guide is a good thing and a bad thing. It's good because you have nothing to worry about. It's bad because you have nothing to gauge.

Yeah, I too wonder the same things when people smoke and drink recklessly. Maybe they don't know someone out there cares about them?

As for Alzheimer's, my fav aunt just got diagnosed with it. Really a bummer. She bailed me out of some bad situations in the past and of all the people to get it, I'm really bummed it's her. Hopefully your mother doesn't get it. I couldn't answer your question because I'm completely ignorant about the disease.

Laura - I've seen study after study that have shown that obesity is caused by glandular problems less than 10% of the time. So yes, there are people out there who can't help it. But they're in a minority.

The hard thing is when it's someone you care about. If you confront them, they just get irritated and don't want to be told what to do. If you don't, then they won't do anything about it. Then there's the old saying that you can lead the horse to water, but you can't make him drink. So at best, what I try to do is set an example and get them to work out with me. Unfortunately, that never lasts.

The committed ones though do often lose it. We had a lady at work who last over 100 pounds and I had no idea she was once big. She's gorgeous now. She's from Nigeria, and she was telling me that men there like big women. But when she came to America, she got health conscious and started eating right and running.

5/26/2006 9:08 AM  
Blogger dave said...

i have been trying to lose some weight for about a month but it seems like my belly is still flubulicious.

i wonder what i am doing wrong???

maybe you should move back down here so we can play soccer.

you were a personal trainer for a while, right? i need some advice. i will email you later.

good to have you back writing, zombie. i miss your posts.

5/26/2006 9:41 AM  
Blogger Joe said...

Calories in vs. Calories out... that's the secret to weight control.

Bottom Line.

Healthy eating is a toughy. When I ask my GF to suggest a healthy lunch, she suggests something called a "salad"... I call it "crunchy air"... not at all appetizing IMO.
Instead I opt for "deep fried pork chop over rice" or what I call, "DEEEE-LICIOUS!"

5/26/2006 11:38 AM  
Blogger Saur♥Kraut said...

Yup. They did a study that isnt' talked about much. It was about 15 years ago. It was a very carefully controlled study, and when I read through it thoroughly, I was impressed. The ultimate conclusion: everyone has the same metabolism. It's what you do and what you eat.

5/26/2006 5:37 PM  
Blogger The Zombieslayer said...

Dave - I replied to you via email.

Joe - If you can burn it off, it's all good. Calories are just a unit of energy. Unused energy often gets stored as fat. Used energy is used. People like to make it more complex than it really is. Maybe it's so they could sell books.

5/26/2006 5:37 PM  
Blogger The Zombieslayer said...

Saurkraut - Too funny. Would love to see that study, but it probably offended people. Truth always offends someone, so we have to sugarcoat everything. That's why I hate political correctness so much.

5/26/2006 5:38 PM  
Blogger Truman said...

It would be hard to fight zombies with one leg, and the obese will be the first to go during an invasion simply because they will be too slow to escape with the same alacrity as the rest of us "thin" folks. Oh well, they will just get turned into fat zombies, and then they will be easy to get away from. Or pick off from a distance.

5/26/2006 10:04 PM  
Blogger Miranda said...

You have an interesting take on things. Diabetes never scared me until recently. Even though my best friend has had it ever since he was small.

I like sugar. I like it a lot. Despite that, I've always been skinny. For me, it HAS been luck. I CAN eat what I want without gaining too much weight.

But when I took my first glucose test at the hospital, it had a reading that was too high. As it turned out, the next tests showed that I was fine and didn't have diabetes, but the scare has made me finally pay more attention to my diet.

You'll have to be my role model.

5/28/2006 9:19 PM  
Blogger Vest said...

The Pancreas is an engine requiring the utmost attention; from the running in stage until death do us part. Parents are responsible for filling your sump with the best oil, some fail due to ignorance or social economical reasons, when this occurs the pistons flail about and the engine is unable to burn up the greaseburgers and chicken fat and loses its ability to perform as it did originally, there is no going back, so you either get fatter or you stop eating grease and exercise your body more frequently.
I am guilty( but only a little bit)
I use MOBIL 1 in my engine.

Visit my post for a horror menu,
BOW WOW SOUP any one, Slurp.

5/29/2006 10:57 PM  
Blogger Slade said...

It is so expensive to be healthy! You have to pay for gym memberships, health food, and all that shit. It is so much easier to just buy the 99 cent special at mcdonald' is sad really

5/30/2006 8:36 AM  
Anonymous j.f. said...

Zom - Got another question for ya. Do you believe that there are any legitimate excuses for obesity? I mean, hypothetically speaking?

5/30/2006 6:40 PM  
Blogger The Zombieslayer said...

Truman - Too funny. I remember in the early 90s, 24-Hour Nautilus got in trouble when their marketing campaign said "when the aliens come, they'll eat the fat ones first." I thought it was brilliant. What better motivation to get fit than to get away from aliens. Of course, there are no such things as aliens, and 24-Hour Nautilus should have said "zombies."

Miranda - Well, good it was only a scare. I've had my blood tested and I'm fine for the time being. Yeah, I used to have a sweet tooth, but kind of grew out of it in my early 30s. Or maybe that's when I started taking things seriously.

Vest - True that the body is an engine, just an organic one. You feed it crap, it will run like crap. Feed it good stuff and it will take care of you. Of course, some folks inherited better engines than others, but life isn't fair and you have to work with the engine you got.

Slade - Not really. We're pretty healthy for only $100/week for the three of us. Gym memberships are a luxury. I don't have one, and I'd probably hike circles around 90% of their clientele. The world is my gym is the way I see it.

I'd post recipes but I think they'd bore most people. We eat pretty well for under $15/day. Just have to know how to cook healthy.

J.F. - Yes, there are some. Poverty, as Slade mentioned, is an excuse. But in this country, I say this with reservations. This country has a wonderful food stamp system as well as W.I.C. which is excellent for poor mothers. The sad thing is most poor folks in this country don't know how to correctly buy healthy stuff.

Another legitimate excuse is injury. You could be the most fit person, and be one injury away from not being able to do the things you did to stay in shape.

The third is heredity, but with the vast majority of folks who are obese, I don't buy that excuse. It's been found in study after study that under 10% of those who are obese have true glandular problems. The rest are doing something wrong. I know when I worked at a certain gym (won't say the name because I can't legally speak for them, but you know me so you know which one I'm talking about), they believed the study that said 4%.

5/30/2006 7:03 PM  
Blogger neal said...

Hey Zombie...

Since I don't have your e mail address I will post this link here. I made a new blog with all my political talk on it. I think I was pissing people off putting it on my other one. So if you want to check it out it is


6/05/2006 4:33 PM  
Blogger tshsmom said...

Hey, what's going on? Are you thinking of rejoining the fold?
Jason came back.

1/28/2007 5:11 AM  
Blogger Dawner said...

I made it back from where ever that was I was for so long. Oh yeah SOCIETY, I didn't much like it there. I was going back through the sites I have been away from for so long and found that you have been away too. Hope to see you come back one day. Tag your it.

2/02/2007 5:18 PM  
Blogger The Zombieslayer said...

Dawner - just tagged you back. Yes, I'll be back hopefully soon. I'm really jonesing for blogging, just really busy like always.

Tshsmom - Yeah, should be back soon.

Neal - Looks like you've been as MIA as I have the past few months. Hopefully you'll be back too. Your blogs were good.

2/05/2007 5:25 PM  

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