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Aldactone (Spironolactone)

Why do certain people have a tendency to become fat? Many agencies have been blamed, especially popular among the afflicted being internal secretions. Rarely can this be proved. When the whole matter is carefully studied, it is found that the thoughtful Dr. Samuel Johnson, two centuries ago, gave a pithy and correct answer: “Nay, sir, whatever be the quantity that a man eats, it is plain that if he is too fat he has eaten more than he should have done. One man may have a digestion that consumes food better than common; but it is certain that solidity is increased by putting something to it.”
Many fat people say that they have inherited the condition. The answer to that is that if mother prides herself on setting a good table, if dad eats heartily, if the household attitude is that good food in generous quantities is the end and purpose of life, then the entire family may become obese, inheritance or no inheritance.
Visual education is being emphasized now, so look about you in the drugstores and lunch bars. Recently I found myself at noon in a suburb of New York. I was taken for lunch to what was obviously a popular place for mothers and children and the teen-age group. One could get a rather poor ham sandwich or the ubiquitous hamburger, but the staple foods which everybody had were cold sweet drinks and ice cream. These are good energy-producing materials and the young need plenty of energy, but they also need vitamins, minerals, proteins, and roughage, all of which should be supplied by their food; and here these things were at a minimum.
All of you have been exposed to much instruction on obesity. Books and articles on the subject have come in floods, all of them with an optimistic note, “Do this and become slim.” Added to this are advertisements showing fat ladies who have become sylph-like and pointing out their royal roads to slenderness. Few if any of these procedures are of value. Exercise will not take off fat, but it will give you a wonderful appetite for more food. The athletes whom you see running with heavy sweaters on are taking off weight but it is water, not fat. Experimenters claim that the average man would need to climb the Washington Monument forty-eight times or walk sixty-six miles to burn up a pound of fat in the body. Either do massages, vibrators, or straps influence the fat. Tight wearing apparel may make the bulges less conspicuous, that is all. The bitter truth is that only diet will reduce your fat.
When fat people say: “Oh, doctor, I eat like a bird,” one physician remarks: “Yes, like a vulture.” This, however, is a little hard on the fat people. Their appetite is so good, having been developed when they were younger and could eat heavily without getting fat, that they really do not realize how much they consume. However, it is a sad truth that they cannot keep their weight down by physical medicine and gadgets.
All this does not mean that we should discourage the eating will wager that Rocky Marciano eats enormous meals, yet I imagine that he goes in for thick steaks more than pies and pastries. You can be pretty certain that Joe Louis, in the latter part of his career when he was blubbery, did not choose his type of food carefully. Why, even in Great Britain, in the Spartan years of the war and just after, health authorities worried about obesity. You must remember that the scarce foods were proteins – meat, eggs, and cheese. The medical journals emphasized the social as well as the physical disadvantages of overweight, and spoke of young girls bulging with puppy fat that was derived from a free and unthinking flow of buns, sweets, and other carbohydrate foods. Fortunately, after puberty a girl’s interests change, and her desire to be attractive leads automatically to wise eating.
The result of all this philosophizing about fat would seem to lead to the conclusion that it should be a simple matter to keep thin. A careful medical look-over of the great majority of obese people will show that there are no hidden physiological reasons to account for their being that way. Having made certain of this, the physician may then start the care of his patient with the confidence that the real problem is the control of the intake of food. First of all he must use judgment in deciding whether his patient does need reducing. Not all of us need to be the slender type. Youngsters at puberty may reasonably be a little plump. Some middle-age spread may be reasonable. After all, the Venus de Milo had more weight on her than would now win her the title of Miss America.

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