It’s a well known fact now that being obese is not just about the food you eat. Americans are a leading example of the gross, sedentary lifestyle (we do love our video games, delivery services, and oversized automobiles), and not moving plus eating garbage makes for a fatty equation. Recently, though, Kiera Butler and Jaeah Lee of Mother Jones smushed together some data regarding obesity and antibiotic use and found that states with higher prescription rates correlated with bigger folks. So, not only does eating Cheetos and sitting on a mushy sofa make you yourself a mushy humanoid, so does taking mass amounts of overpriced antibiotic medicines.

drugs in food

According to Butler and Lee, the investigation here is ongoing and no legit, perfect science exists to really put antibiotics on trial, but one theory is that antibiotics mess with our inner world of microbes, allowing for icky business to happen (I’m scientific!). The correlation also exists between low-income people and unhealthy largeness, but that relationship is easy to see. McDonalds and Pringles are cheaper than fresh broccoli (what the organic hell, America?). Though, health costs are nonsensical, so how do poor folks get a lot of antibiotics flowing through their clogged up bodies? Animals! Mass producers of meat squirt their creatures full of antibiotics to keep them from getting sick, and that in turn goes straight to the consumer of subsequent steaks, burgers, and hot dogs. We’re full of the stuff, even when it’s not prescribed.

Antibiotics seem to be too much of a go-to cure for ailments that could be treated with healthy foods and mad chillin’. I realize each winter my very American addiction to antibiotics when I go to a Spanish doctor or talk to my ESL students; they’re like, “chill a while, you don’t need to pump yourself up with antibiotics,” whereas American doctors are like, “antibiotics to the FACE!” The American medical mantra hits me every time I wake up with the sniffles (“mom I’m gonna die I need drugs!”). We’re weakening our own bodies, creating chemical dependencies, doing this even at 6 months and earlier (that’s bad!).

I’ve written a fair deal about eating healthy and living a healthy lifestyle, and I’d wager that all it takes to be in a good medical state is simply that. Our bodies are miraculous machines, full of scary faults and weird wiring, yes, but capable of repairing most things. Horrifying ailments require medical treatment, obviously, but snifflin’ can be treated with chillin’. Obesity comes from eating unhealthy fare, moving ever so slightly or not at all, and chugging drugs to keep the bad stuff out (even though after a while bugs can out-evolve antibiotics, creating super bugs). Truth: obesity is our fault and we are responsible for our own gross way of life. We’re not going to cure it with drugs, we have to lose our chemical addictions, fight unhealthy crap food, and even go to the policy level in the battle for affordable, good nutrients.

Although no one badass scientific proof exists to correlate obesity and antibiotics, the obvious picture is that we’re taking too many drugs, eating too much food enhanced by drugs (and made of synthetic food-like materials), and depending on external things to fix conditions we can fight before they even have a chance to manifest.

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