A report released this week carried out by researchers at Memorial University show that obesity rates had tripled across the country between 1985 and 2011.
More worrisome than that stark number, this province and New Brunswick have dubious distinction of having the worst rates in Canada.
We can also add that researchers are predicting the rates will continue to get worse until about 20 per cent of Canadians will be obese, by 2019.
The study shows that we are eating ourselves to death in this province and are likely going to pass on that sad legacy on to our offspring.
We have managed to tackle and nearly defeat smoking in Newfoundland and Labrador, and it appears it’s time to take the same all-out approach to eating, especially as it relates to exercise. We used to be active people — we had to be to survive for the most part.
Not so long ago, most of us had parents or grandparents who got up early and did honest, physical work all day through.
They either headed to sea to fish or walked into the woods to either cut logs to sell or wood to burn. Many did both to keep their families from starving.
They had gardens they tended to and spent hours spreading fish on flakes, turning them over or taking them in when it rained.
They didn’t spend much time sitting around on the couch because they put in a hard day’s work and because they couldn’t afford the kerosene for the lamp or two that lit the house.
No wonder this generation is getting fatter and fatter.
Many of us sit in an office behind a computer to make a living. We then go home and eat more food than we need. It’s partly because it’s available and we can well afford to buy it.
From there we sit and watch TV or peer into a computer screen for hours on end before hitting the sack.
On weekends, we head into the wilderness by car, or if we are really roughing it, we squat on a snowmobile in winter or ATV in summer.
For relaxation, a lot of us drive to the cabin where we barbecue too much food and guzzle too much beer and watch satellite TV while appreciating the “great outdoors.”
It’s time we as a society decided what really constitutes “the good life.”