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July 07, 2008

Body Linkage

Michael Blowhard writes:

Dear Blowhards --

* America's fattest states, 2008 edition.

* Pin-up model, porn star, and producer Sarah Blake -- has there ever been a more cheerily entrepreneurial sex goddess? -- offers some tips for those who want to photograph themselves. Sarah has also finished her first book -- a how-to manual for those who want to enter the adult-film biz. Buy a copy here.

* How do the Japanese stay so slim? And why do they put on so much weight once they leave Japan? More here.

* Aimee Heckel reviews the workouts available in workout-crazy Boulder, CO, and decides that her favorite of them all is Gyrotonics. I'm a Gyro nut myself. "I don't remember ever feeling as good as I felt after I left this class. I felt like I'd just had the perfect massage," she writes. That's how I feel after Gyro too. San Francisco's Amy Moon gives Gyro a try and finds it good for stretching and posture.

* "Vaginal rejuvenation surgeries" are becoming more commonplace.

* MBlowhard Rewind: I wrote about my discovery of Bikram yoga back here.



posted by Michael at July 7, 2008


"Because it's all about youth, youth, youth.” says the plastic surgeon in the Times article, quite aptly.

Posted by: Will S. on July 8, 2008 8:20 AM

Japan is starting to be concerned about rising obesity rates and the resulting health issues. The government recently begun a nationwide campaign to get men to keep their waistlines under 33 inches (more likely expressed as 85 cm, which is just over 33 inches), complete with measuring sessions in workplaces and elsewhere. Offenders face social scorn, though not actual penalties.

Waist measurement is actually a much better predictor of weight-related health risks in men than is BMI. Anything over 40 inches is the "death zone," though ideally a man's waist measurement should not exceed half his height. 33 inches might work in Japan, where people are smaller in general, but would be unrealistic in America.

Posted by: Peter on July 8, 2008 10:10 AM

The obesity rate thing is completely meaningless unless you adjust for black and Hispanic population. Look at the states in the bottom (least obese) group -- they're almost all-white states. They should break this out by race, although of course they won't. If you looked at just the white population of California, leaving out Hispanics, they'd be far fitter.

Fitness tracks race and social class almost perfectly.

Posted by: mq on July 8, 2008 11:33 AM

"... ideally a man's waist measurement should not exceed half his height."

I'm still wearing size 36 inch pants. I must admit, the Karaoke Queen has given me a new lease on life. She buys the size 36 pants with the "Magic Waistband" at Cosco.

The Magic Waistband features little elastic panels that pull out to give you that extra bit of space, without the annoying need to increase the waist size of your pants.

Try it.

Posted by: Shouting Thomas on July 8, 2008 11:57 AM

Gyrotonics, sure, she'll try that.

But will she try gyros?

Posted by: Lexington Green on July 8, 2008 12:22 PM

Having lived in Japan for 9 years, I can tell you why they do not get as fat as we do.

First, the high population density makes travel by car too much of hassle. One uses a car to go places on the weekend. So, you walk and ride bikes to and from the train station as well as to get to places in the neighborhood. Also, one often must stand on the trains, because they are very crowded. In the U.S. (except for NYC and maybe SF) everyone drives where ever they want to go.

Second, meal portions are much smaller. Even the fast food sizes (like at McDonald's or MOS Burger) are much smaller than in the U.S. The U.S. Burgerking whopper is simply enormous. Every time I returned to the U.S. and ate in a restaurant, I was surprised at the huge portion sizes we have here. Americans are gluttons when it comes to eating.

Most (not all) traditional Japanese food is better for you than most American food is. However, some Japanese food can actually be high calorie (ton-katsu for example).

The reasons are mostly 1 and 2.

Posted by: kurt9 on July 8, 2008 3:22 PM


Japanese diets higher in iodine, iodine supports thyroid health, properly functioning thyroid optimizes metabolism.

I think it has to be a factor . . .

I've started orthosupplementation on iodine as of about 6 weeks ago and am considering how to blog about it . . . don't want to give out anything that appears to be medical advice, and a lot of people are scared of the stuff . . . OTOH I feel so amazing it's hard to restrain my holler-from-the-mountaintop impulse to evangelicize . . . as one example: these two little gals I carry around here on my chest? They feel like TEENAGERS again. I mean feel, to the touch -- the tissue has completely re-built itself . . .

Posted by: Kirsten on July 9, 2008 8:52 AM

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