Controlling the Boomer Belly
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Why does getting older and getting fatter seem to go together so easily? Why can't the Boomers who run the world control their weight? And why can't those trendy diets cure our "boomer bellies"?
Robert Lipsyte, who has fought his own life-long battle of the bulge, wants to know why middle age seems to equal middle-age spread. "Everything slows down-except maybe your eating habits," says Dr. Michael D. Jensen, director of the Obesity Treatment center at the Mayo Clinic. Patrick M. O'Neil, Professor of Psychiatry and Director of the Weight Management Center at the Medical University of South Carolina agrees. "Weight creeps on" he says, and we ignore or rationalize it away. He explains that since 3500 calories equals one pound of body fat, you only need to eat only 100 calories more per day to gain ten pounds in a year. And here's more alarming news: That's about how much a women's metabolism goes down per day after menopause, according to Jennifer Lovejoy, Vice President of The Obesity Society. So a woman can indeed gain weight without eating more than she used to. All agree that Boomers use food for reward, entertainment and distraction. Lipsyte's good humor about his own eating habits and his usual hard-hitting questions keep this conversation entertaining and keep the practical advice coming.
Lipsyte next goes one-on-one with former presidential candidate Mike Huckabee, who famously dropped more than 100 pounds. "I could govern a state but I couldn't control my appetite," the former Arkansas Governor says. Conversation then turns to Huckabee's take on the legacy his fellow Boomers are leaving for the next generation of Americans.
Finally, Vanity Fair contributing editor Maureen Orth explains why when it comes to aging with great, sexy style, Tina Turner is her personal heroine.