Ask anyone on the street what the stereotypes are for the average American and you could definitely guess what they would say.

What’s the first thing that comes to your mind? Patriotic? Loud? What about obese? You definitely have to throw that in there, and it's a real shame. Mostly everyone is aware that the United States has a real problem with obesity that isn’t improving very much at all. In fact, over a third of all American adults are considered obese (35%) and over 74% of men and 64% of women are either overweight or obese!

Those numbers are quite sobering when you compare them to the generations of our grandparents and before. Unhealthy food is cheaper; there is a fast food joint on every street corner in America, fighting over who can sell the cheapest hamburger and physical activity levels, especially in the youth of America, have hit rock bottom. But this isn’t a jab at the fast food industry, quite honestly they can sell whatever the hell the want. What I want to propose is a positive change that we, as Americans, can make in our lives to fight back against obesity and the crippling health problems that are associated with it.

As obesity has grown in America, so has the push to normalize it, to make it socially acceptable to be obese and that everyone must accept the lifestyle choice to be that way. We have militantly promoted the acceptance of being “plus sized,” to the point where many have demeaned and put down individuals who are skinny and in shape.

Now, don’t get me wrong, loving yourself is something we should all do. We should not let the opinions of others and our body weight determine our character, but there is a line. We have reached a point in our societal “progression” where we have made it taboo to even suggest weight loss to those we know who are overweight. We have demonized those brave enough to question the fact that 300+ lbs. is now “beautiful” as “fat shamers.”

As I have mentioned in previous articles, the Social Justice Warriors will stop at nothing to ensure that your hurtful words are never heard again. I wish I could say that this behavior was harmless though. According to the National Institutes of Health, obesity is the second leading cause of preventable death behind tobacco use at a staggering 300,000 deaths per year. That will never be “beautiful” to me. When you make obesity fashionable and normal, you are literally causing people to live much shorter lives than they would at a healthy weight.

So what can we do in order to improve our physical state? America used to be a land of fitness and incredibly healthy individuals, how do we being that back again? It’d be easy for me to tell you to run hill sprints, revamp yourself physically, and make healthier food choices but I won’t do that. Instead, I’ll tell you to think about those who you love. Chances are you have some friends or family that are overweight or obese. Maybe you are overweight yourself. Ask yourself if feeling comfortable and "accepted" by society at obese status is worth shaving years and even decades off of your life. Focus on making small, positive changes in your life to improve your health. Don’t expect everything to happen overnight, be patient. Find a friend to hold you accountable and go make yourself the healthiest, happiest YOU that you can be.