Healthy Living

Obesity Causes, A Novel By Agatha Christie?

As a therapist who specializes in helping people release excessive weight, finding the obesity culprit is like a good mystery. Today in fact, I finished Agatha Christie’s book “Murder on the Orient Express” and began to fancy myself as Hercule Poirot the famous French detective. Each time I begin the process with a client to uncover the true cause of weight gain, I am led down numerous paths that make no sense.

As the plot unfolds in Agatha’s book and each passenger on the train is interviewed to find the murderer, the symmetry of my work explodes with similar enthusiasm. Each word and thought that is told me by my clients weaves a story of misdirection, some truth and a few white lies. It is up to me to uncover the real or imagined purported master criminal. Is it society, or evil men focused on greedy profits at an unbelievable cost to human health, or is it some subtle sabotage within their mind.

As in Agatha’s book each one of the 12 passengers were connected and master minded the murder, so it is today with weight gain. Here is a list of 12 items that could be connected to the crime of weight gain or the obesity causes.

  • 126 pounds of sugar consumed by Americans per year.
  •  4 hours of watching TV per day by the average American.
  •   An American Culture that defines the word “Stress”.
  • Each year restaurants and fast food are making the portions bigger and bigger.
  • As children, most Americans are told that leaving food on the plate is a sin and an outrage to 3rd world countries that have starving citizens.
  • Magazines and advertising defining unrealistic size and beauty.
  • A Diet industry that says a magic pill will solve any weight loss problem.
  • Processed foods.
  • Genetically engineered sugar.
  • Procrastination – there is always tomorrow.
  • Medicines that are prescribed for symptoms but do not solve the cause.
  • Health care systems and Government programs that will not pay for prevention.

Like Hercules I too must make educated guesses on the real cause. One thing I know for sure is that each one of my client’s problems or issues starts in their mind. There was a point in Poirot’s investigation that he asked his 2 colleagues to relax and take 15 minutes to think through what had transpired that day. At the end of the appointed time period Poirot said that he had a clearer picture of what needed to be done next.

I must do the same thing with each one of my clients. First, uncover the problem (crime). Second, calm their mind. Third, make positive suggestions that will determine the culpit of obesity (crime). Last, make sure they have a plan to not return to the scene of the crime (gain the weight back). The book “Murder on the Orient Express” has truly inspired me to be a better weight loss therapist (detective) who always solves the crime.



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