‘My 600 lb. Life’ uncovers weighty issues

Obesity is a growing epidemic in our country, affecting even America’s youth.

With busier lifestyles and convenient fast food restaurants at almost every corner, we are struggling to control what goes in our mouths, and it eventually shows on our waistlines. Though the diet and exercise industry hasbecome a multi-billion dollar industry, there still are millions of Americans who struggle daily with their weight, some more than others.

The show My 600 lb. Life on TLC follows individuals who are struggling with obesity and pursuing gastric bypass surgery as a last resort in prolonging life and taking control of their weight. These hour-long mini-documentaries entail the lifestyle of the individuals who weigh in anywhere from 572 pounds to as high as 900 pounds.

Complications such as lymph-edema, diabetes, coronary artery disease and mild depression are only some of the effects the show allows you to see as a result of bad nutrition and a lack of proper diet and exercise.

A majority of the individuals in the series are struggling with other issues such as depression, anxiety or other forms of stress that are factors in their weight problems. The documentaries show how all these mental instabilities contribute to loneliness and poor social skills and result in people turning to food for comfort.

In each documentary, each person is responsible for losing a small amount of weight before they undergo major gastric bypass surgery. The show describes the surgery as a method to treat morbid obesity.

The surgeon goes in and divides a portion of the stomach to what will become the patient’s new stomach. The patient then will be forced to eat smaller, more nutritious meals to keep them full and healthy.

Many patients seem to suffer with the new lifestyle change and often are seen purging or eating fatty, unhealthy meals throughout the show, but most of the shows aired this season result in successful outcomes.

The cameras follow the individuals for 12 months, and most patients have amazing results, some being even half of their original body weights. I was amazed at the hard work and began to empathize with the patients on almost a personal level.

Though the show sometimes is hard to watch, such as in moments when excessive skin is being removed, it is a big eye-opener to anyone who constantly eats meals high in fats, calories and carbohydrates.

Even though some may not show it in their weight, other deadly results can be caused by a poor diet, including cancer, coronary heart disease, diabetes and, like those chronicled in the show, morbid obesity.

I am hooked on this new reality show and will continue to watch the rest of the episodes.

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