American Society For Nutrition

My Love Handles Saved My Life

My Love Handles Saved My Life

Excellence in Nutrition Research and Practice
Posted on 04/09/2010 at 09:55:14 PM by Student Blogger
By: Alison K.

“My love handles saved my life” was a recent quote from a news story about a shooting that took place in Atlantic City. A woman was shot and was told by police that if she hadn't had love handles, she likely would have died. My question is, if she hadn't had love handles, would they have missed?

I guess it doesn't really matter either way, and I'm quite glad that she's ok—it's great news. However, it brings up an interesting twist to body image—are we spending time focusing on our bodies too much? Do we even have an idea of what a healthy body image is anymore?

Both men and women alike suffer from body image issues. Many men have trouble gaining weight—a fact that most women scoff at and are frustrated by. Meanwhile, women seem to be forever struggling for the body they really want. What does it mean that we are so concerned with this aspect of our lives? Is it really that important?

I find myself wondering if a BMI of ~20 really is healthy for everyone, or if perhaps people are built in ways that leave them unable to reach this goal. Historically, women with more voluptuous figures were adored by men. Now, the thinner the better seems to be the trend. In recent years, however, it has been noticed by the New York Times amongst other news sources, that teens are carrying a bit more weight than they used to and don't seem too bothered by it.

Given the current obesity epidemic, it's no wonder that weight is such an issue for most people in the United States. I think it's important when we are talking to our friends and family about nutrition and weight maintenance that we encourage healthfulness over thinness, or fitting into those size 0 pants. Committing yourself to a healthy lifestyle will likely lead you to a healthy body type, even though it may not mean you'll be as skinny as you'd like. It's important to stimulate positive attitudes towards body image for both men and women, which I guess even means loving your love handles!