I'm apologizing in advance for the rant that this one is going to turn into.
The New York Times recently published an article (here) describing the new smart phone apps that have been created to help with weight loss. The app is described as a "nutritionist in your pocket". You plug your food and exercise into the application and it keeps track of your caloric intake to burned ratio.
This supposedly simplifies dieting?
Our country is obsessed with weight loss, counting calories and getting more exercise. We're also obsessed with finding a simple solution and the latest gadget that is going to make it easier. I constantly find myself wandering how the $60 Billion weight loss industry survives if it continues to produce little to no long term results. The bottom line is that dieting and counting calories is not a sustainable way to live. Are you really going to use your new smartphone app and count calories for the rest of your life? At the end of the day, has it taught you how to make healthier choices?
Why is it so hard for us to understand that becoming educated on living a healthy lifestyle is the simplest and most sustainable way to lose weight and be healthy? It's because we're a fast fix society and no one is willing to put the time or effort into making choices that take a little more thought and action. Why would you when you can down a Diet Coke and then punch it into your iPhone? We get the permission to eat bad and let a computer figure it out. Then we're stuck eating carrot sticks for dinner to make up for it.
In the article, Dr. James A. Levine, an endocrinologist at the Mayo Clinic says, “We really haven’t come up with one good weight-loss solution, if we had, everyone would be using it.”
You may not have figured it out yet Dr. Levine, but there are plenty of people in the preventative health care industry that have. Nothing in this country is going to change until doctors are required to take more than one class on nutrition in medical school. The health care industry is playing into our instant gratification society by prescribing pills to fix all of our ailments because it a money maker and it's what we as consumers require. If you went to your doctor and he told you to change your diet instead of prescribing a pill for whatever ailed you, you'd probably seek a second opinion. Our cultural approach to health care is ass backwards.
Oh wait, you're going to tell me that your mad about our health care system and can't afford to see the doctor or get the pills? It's ok. I'm sure they make an app for that.