Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Book Review: 'Big, Fat American Lion Book' by Alessandro Boccaletti

European author Alessandro Boccaletti, earned his BS and MBA from New York University and is a researcher and science-novel writer. His interests and writings are focused on pharmacology and its many facets (good and evil) and on health with a special emphasis on health trends (good and evil). In this short book he addresses a subject that could not be more timely – the obesity epidemic – a topic of concern, ridicule, and contemporary fascination with television shows parading ads for Big People as commercials for their comedies about obese characters. It is time for a learned writer to address this disturbing trend in expanding waistlines and BMIs and that is precisely hat makes BIG FAT AMERICAN LION such an important - and entertaining! – book for all to read.

The flavor of the book is established in Alessandro’s fine Introduction – ‘Here we start this exploration that will take you step by step down a road to clearly understanding the words “fat,” “overweight,” and “obese” in a global perspective. After reading this book, you will be able to better understand these conditions and what you can do to improve your lifestyle. You are the only game changer in your own life, and only you can decide on the best way to improve your lifestyle. In this book, you will discover some proven techniques, and you may be surprised to see that, most of the time, nature gives us all the tools we need to improve our lifestyles. The big pharmaceutical companies call obesity an “epidemic,” and new products keep coming on the market, driving you to spend your hard-earned money on their latest chemical or biological achievements. When you take medication, you decide to occasionally or regularly absorb into your body a synthetically produced chemical product that could even worsen your physical condition in the long run— there are always some possible side effects. Actually, our bodies are natural miracles in themselves, and most of the time they adapt to the current internal and external environments. A healthier lifestyle is better than a thousand medicines. You need to realize that the pharmaceutical companies, with their billions in cash, exist to make a profit. They have shareholders and high-salaried management to pay, and they need clients’ or consumers’ money for their corporate interests. The financial game can be summarized in four words: Product, Price, Place, Promotion. The principle is that a new product must be sold at a certain price, in places where sales and profit are maximized, and by using the best promotional media tools. To the consumer, the product is often presented as a miracle cure, and it carries an intrinsic high price due to its advertised properties. But the basic reality is that there is a seller and a buyer, so just try to be careful out there. Many times there are no shortcuts, and there are many illusory traps. The choice to feel better is yours alone, and I will try in this short guide to help you in this process by making complex issues simpler and more understandable. Basic knowledge and education are essential in tackling the obesity epidemic.’

Then Alessandro gets down to the basics - Our Big, Fat World (dissecting obesity and BMI), The Big, Fat United States of America Obesity (‘About 35 percent of the population is obese. Almost 68 percent is considered overweight), Management and Weight-Loss Strategies (Obesity currently accounts for national health-care costs of more than $ 210 billion a year. Obesity is costlier to the US health-care system than smoking),
and The Future
(We live in a fat world, a world of abundance, where goods and food are generally available, and changing life conditions, changing living standards, and changing consumer habits drive individuals to eat badly, often, and without limits. Easily available food, loaded with taste stimulants and additives, triggers chemical responses in the body that stimulate the consumer to eat more).

Rich in back up material, charts, graphs and scientific data this book remains immensely readable – and it is a very important contribution to Public Health (meaning us!). High recommended. Grady Harp, April 17

Editor's note: This review has been published with the permission of Grady Harp. Like what you read? Subscribe to the SFRB's free daily email notice so you can be up-to-date on our latest articles. Scroll up this page to the sign-up field on your right.

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