Sunday, August 8, 2010

10 Things that Inspire Me: #1

This is part of the 101 Things to do in 1001 Days project. I listed that I would like to find 10 things that inspire me to be who I want to be or have inspired me to be who I am today.

I am going to list them one by one as I come across them. I think this is going to be harder than I originally thought, but it will be interesting for me.

The first thing that inspires me to be who I am is: Obesity in America and America's reputation on food.

Since I have lived in England for a couple of years, I have realized how much American convenience foods and ways of life have such a bad reputation. Obesity in America is a big subject around the world. While I lived in the U.S. I never really saw or understood this fact. I did see it in people, but I thought it was a common fact world wide. Although there are many obese people here in England, America still holds the worst reputation and statistics for obesity. A lot of this problem is blamed on the conveniences that Americans love.

I would have to say that I see why people would view America like this. We are famous for our fast food chains and our grocery shopping habits that allow us to eat something straight from a box. Now for some, this is not that big of a deal. And personally, I find it to be judgmental. Judgmental because I see England slowly leaning towards this behavior, but yet they continue to blame the U.S. for this. It is definitely not the fault of the American people that others are deciding that fast food is the way of life. They make that decision on their own.

However, I hate to hear this. I hear it all the time, especially on TV. Recently, the UK was discussing opening some type of restaurant. One that was opened in America that is slowly making it's way around the world. Many English people objected to it because they said, "This is American food. American food is bad for our society and economy." Seriously? This was a restaurant. People need to take responsibility for their own actions and stop blaming others. If I chose to eat McDonald's one day, that is my choice. I do not go and blame the English people for having a McDonald's in this country.

Why does this inspire me?

It inspires me to want to change the reputation that America currently holds. It makes me want to change the way our future generations are raised. It makes me want to encourage all obese people to change their way of life. I know this is impossible, but maybe it could happen. Who knows.... I just know that I can contribute to that change by changing myself. I do not eat fast food, but I once did. And this is exactly what encouraged me to make the change. People need to understand that eating healthy can be just as inexpensive and convenient as eating out all the time or driving through a drive thru. So for me, this is contribution and this is why it inspires me.

Maybe one day America will loose the reputation of being lazy and relying on conveniences. And really it can start anywhere. Hopefully, other Americans can set a good example for the future generations, show them a better way of life, and America can soon grow to be a healthier society.

I have to say that I would not have fully opened my eyes to how many conveniences Americans truly have. It's true. There are fast food chains located on every corner, every block. All of these fast food chains have drive thrus. That is probably the biggest problem. Here in England, it is not like that at all. You will every once in a while come across a Subway, McDonald's, Pizza Hut, Dominoes, Subway, or Burger King. But NONE of these have drive thrus. I believe since being here in the UK I have seen one McDonald's that had a drive thru.

So on this thought, as American what is your view? Have you traveled to other countries and witnessed this, too? Do you feel that America can make the change, lose the bad reputation?


  1. After living in Italy it has opened my eyes. People in the states always ask me if there are obese people here since they eat pasta and gelato. My answer is NO, all their food is FRESH and they don't eat a lot of fastfood. When I go out to eat here I can tell that my food is fresh and it makes all the difference not only in taste but with my body!
    It is really hard to find fastfood here in Italy. I have seen 2 McDonalds and 2 Burgerkings the whole time I have been here!
    Sadly, I don't think it will change in America. I wish folks would stop and think. Stop pumping up our cows with stuff and just let them be grass feed, prepare meals with fresh ingredients and GET UP AND MOVE! That is another big difference. Here, people walk and ride bikes a lot. Not so much back home. I see a lot of not so great things about home since being here and I wish everyone in the states would go to another country and observe the way others live their lives!

    I hope Americans will change and it will surprise me if they do. I just think everything is to easy in the good ole USA!


  2. I haven't traveled but the obesity problem is kinda crazy out of control but I think the fact that other countries judge America on this is ridiculous.

  3. I definitely agree that America has a fast food reputation. I learned a lot in undergrad about the "McDonalidization of America" - George Ritzer's view of American society. It sounds like you would enjoy his work.


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