Alison Hammond’s recent speech on morning talk show, This Morning, about obesity continues to emotionally move the public. Alison’s words were met with overwhelming support, especially across the internet.
On Friday’s broadcast of This Morning, a viewer known as 'Jean', rang into the morning talk show and shared her concerns about her 17-year-old daughter's eating habits. Alison was extremely moved by the call and tearfully opened up about her own issues with her weight. She began, ' Can I just say something because I've had obesity all my life. What it is is, your regulation system is out of whack. Obviously, you can't control wanting to eat all the time.'
She continued through tears, 'And I think a lot of people don't realise obesity is a disease. You can't help it. You can't help wanting to eat all the time.' Co-host Dermot O'Leary put an arm of support around her. Alison went on, 'But when you're in it, you want to eat, you want all the bad things, and you know you don't look great.'
Referring to the Jean's query about her daughter Alison concluded, 'She needs help. I think the NHS need to see it more as a disease. People help people who are anorexic, but they don't help people who are overweight. That's why so many people turn to surgery and things like that because we don't know what to do.'
The recent Healthy Survey for England shows that currently 26 percent of adults (defined as persons 16 years and above) are obese. Therefore, raising the risk of developing heart disease, cancer and diabetes. Many people seem to think that weight gain and obesity are linked to a lack of effort – which is entirely too simplistic. Although weight gain can be a result of eating habits, some people are automatically at a disadvantage when it comes to controlling their eating behaviour.
Overeating is also driven by various biological factors like genetics and hormones. Certain people are simply predisposed to gaining weight. There are are other varying factors like food addiction. It is known that junk foods can cause addiction in susceptible individuals. These people lose control over their eating behaviour, similar to people struggling with alcohol addiction who loose control over drinking.
Addiction in all forms is a complex issue that can be very difficult to overcome. When you become addicted to something, you lose your freedom of choice and your brain ultimately makes those choices for you. Also medical conditions could also cause added weight gain. There are known medicinal drugs cause weight gain as a side effect e.g, antidepressants have been linked to weight gain over time.
Great British Bake Off star Laura Adlington echoed Alison’s sentiments and revealed that she was also moved to tears by her words. She wrote on Instagram: 'Today I watched in tears as @alisonhammond55 talked about her struggle with her weight on This Morning
'I love Alison (always have) and I fully support everything she said. Living in a bigger body is not a choice; it is a hard and real struggle, and there is little to no support out there for people who want it. We are made to feel worthless on a daily basis, told we are lazy, and encouraged to simply "eat less, move more". The reality is, it’s not that simple. The reasons people over-eat are very complex.'
It is evident there are many factors that come to play when it comes to weight. So, belittling obesity down to just being ‘lazy' shows a lack of understanding, and proves there is is still more to do when it comes to changing that stereotype.