Between Obesity & COVID-19 Outcomes Is Inexcusable
NORTHERN, ONTARIO ~~~~~~ April 5, 2021 (LSN) Political correctness and misguided ‘compassion’ has so thoroughly come to dominate all aspects of our society that those in power no longer admit the truth even when it’s staring every right in the face.
Here’s a Tweet from Kulvinder Kaur, an Ontario physician who has been speaking out against the prevailing (and ever-changing) narrative pushed by much of the media & political establishment:
“Based on peer-reviewed scientific evidence, what are 2 significant modifiable risk factors of Covid mortality?
Obesity & Vitamin D deficiency
382 days of “14 days to flatten curve”
Why are govts still not making basic health promotion recommendations to reduce mortality risk?”
An essential point is being raised here.
In a year in which we were constantly told by health officials and politicians that they were constantly ‘following the science,’ they have ignored the science in a way that is absolutely inexcusable.
In fact, for all the areas in which science is still being discussed and disputed (it was always meant to be a constant learning process rather than religious style edicts), there is clear evidence of the fact that COVID-19 outcomes are directly related to obesity.
Here’s what the US CDC says:
Adults with excess weight are at even greater risk during the COVID-19 pandemic:
Having obesity increases the risk of severe illness from COVID-19. People who are overweight may also be at increased risk.
Having obesity may triple the risk of hospitalization due to a COVID-19 infection.
Obesity is linked to impaired immune function.
Obesity decreases lung capacity and reserve and can make ventilation more difficult.
A study of COVID-19 cases suggests that risks of hospitalization, intensive care unit admission, invasive mechanical ventilation, and death are higher with increasing BMI.
The increased risk for hospitalization or death was particularly pronounced in those under age 65.
More than 900,000 adult COVID-19 hospitalizations occurred in the United States between the beginning of the pandemic and November 18, 2020. Models estimate that 271,800 (30.2%) of these hospitalizations were attributed to obesity.
This chart from Obesity Canada also outlines the risks (ignore the part where they claim ‘treating obesity is about improving health, not weight loss’ as this is obviously absurd):
Where is the reaction to this?
Consider how officials and politicians have reacted to the ‘new strains’ of COVID-19 that they say are more deadly and more transmissible.
In some cases, they claimed a 50% more transmissible variant was the ‘justification’ for more lockdowns.
Yet, as you can see in the chart above, being obese “may triple the risk of hospitalization, increase the risk of death, and make the effects of COVID-19 far worse.”
Shouldn’t that have led to emergency warnings from the government?
Shouldn’t they have done huge public awareness campaigns all over TV, radio, newsprint, and social media warning about the risk of being obese?
Shouldn’t they have used their daily press conferences to bring in fitness and diet experts (who actually look healthy), to give advice on how people can lose weight?
Shouldn’t they have kept the gyms open and encouraged outdoor exercise?
Given all their spending, shouldn’t they have used some of that to offer vouchers that could be used for the purchase of gym and exercise equipment so people could exercise in their homes/apartments?
And, given that obesity is the second highest risk factor after age, shouldn’t it have gotten the second most amount of attention?
Of course, as we know, that didn’t happen.
They did none of that.
Now, at this point some people reading this may be thinking “it would be wrong for politicians to push people to lose weight, that would be asking too much of people.”
Yet, in this past year politicians told people to accept that their businesses would be wiped out, their freedoms massively curtailed, their supposedly ‘ironclad rights’ turned into mere ‘privileges,’ and told people to stay isolated and away from their friends and loved-ones.
That was all in the name of ‘following the science’ and ‘saving lives.’
So how would it be ‘asking too much’ to explain how big a threat obesity was and push people to lose weight?
That seems entirely reasonable given what we’ve seen in the past year.
And, a focus on improving health and reducing obesity while protecting seniors could have ensured targeted measures that protected the most vulnerable, rather than locking down our entire society, decimating the economy, and making the mental health crisis even worse.
The fact that didn’t happen is perhaps the biggest indictment of our health officials and ‘leaders’ that we’ve seen.
For all their claims to ‘follow the science,’ they were clearly led by concerns of political correctness, putting that ideology of misguided compassion and an abandonment of reality above actual logic and truth.
A virus doesn’t care if it’s ‘mean’ to point out that someone is obese, and certainly doesn’t care that people have read all the ‘healthy at any weight’ BS that passes for health advice these days.
A mirror of when the pandemic began
If you’re thinking that health officials and politicians putting political correctness ahead of science sounds familiar, it should.
When the virus was first emerging from China, there were people – myself included – who called for flight restrictions from China.
The political establishment, media establishment, and many health officials called those calls ‘bigoted’ and said ‘racism and stigma’ was a ‘bigger threat’ than the virus.
The airports and borders were left open, until it was far too late.
So, when the chips were down, and when acknowledging reality was essential, the politicians and health officials put political correctness first.
And we saw it again during the pandemic with the issue of obesity. Rather than address, rather than acknowledge a difficult truth that many Canadians were vulnerable because they weighed too much, they ignored the second biggest risk factor for negative outcomes.
That’s why, when those same health officials and politicians demand that we trust them now, they simply don’t have the credibility to ask for that trust.
They blew it over and over and over again, putting political correctness first when it should have entirely abandoned.
Until our country can overcome this broken ideology, until we can actually confront reality and deal with it, we will fall further and further into the depths of fantastical thinking – something history shows always ends in disaster.
Kenora, Rainy River, Dryden, Thunder Bay, Terrace Bay Marathon, Sault Ste Marie, Sudbury, North Bay, Ontario
#LSN_Health #LSN_TBay #LSN_SSM
Spencer Fernando is based in Winnipeg
The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by Lake Superior News / Lake Superior Media.