Battle of the over-nourished bulge 

Your handy index for inspired spring eating

click to enlarge food_glenda1.jpg

Here we go: peel, peel, peeling back the layers.

Even the Telus World Ski & Snowboard Festival, which just wrapped, delivers a welcome liminality, with spring shirtsleeves stage-side in the village and fully winterized humans on the slopes.

So off come the down-puffed coats, the woolies, the favourite hoodies — exposing our white limbs, our whiter chests and necklines, maybe even our whitest of whites, our flabby upper thighs (yikes!) to warm air and light and other attenuating properties that mark winter's end.

So long, sucker, I say. But that torso thickness that won't change despite the removal of clothing layers, well, that's another matter.

And so it is we have the following index, with apologies to Harper's ever accumulating, much like the midden layers around my middle. This one is devoted to the spring chapter of the ever-changing shape of the human condition. Stick it on your fridge.

Amount that Canadian men have increased in height since 1953: 1.4 cm/decade

Amount that Canadian women have increased in height since 1953: 1.1cm/decade

Amount that median body mass has increased in Canadian men since 1953: 1.9 kg/decade

Amount that median body mass has increased in Canadian women since 1953: 0.8 kg/decade

Average weight-for-height increase in Canadian men since 1953: 5.1 per cent

Average weight-for-height increase in Canadian women since 1953: 4.9 per cent

Prevalence of overweight and obese Canadian men in 1970-72 vs. 1998: 40.0 per cent vs. 50.7 per cent

Number of provinces or territories in 2000 where the percentage of the adult population that is obese was under 10 per cent: zero

Number of provinces or territories in 2000 where the percentage of the adult population that is obese was 10–14 per cent: two, namely B.C. and Quebec

Number of provinces or territories in 2000 where the percentage of the adult population that is obese was over 20 per cent: six, namely Northwest Territories, Nunavut, Newfoundland/Labrador, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick

Number of provinces or territories in 2002/04 where the percentage of the adult population that is obese was over 30-34 per cent: two, namely Saskatchewan and Newfoundland/Labrador

Lowest provincial obesity rate in Canada in 2002/04: 15-19 per cent of the population, in B.C. only

Increased ratio of fast food outlets that people in low income neighbourhoods in Edmonton, Alberta are exposed to vs. people in middle or upper income neighbourhoods: 2.7

Amount spent on advertising campaigns for food, soft drinks and chain restaurants by industry vs. the spend by government in the U.K. in 2003/04: 10x greater

Percentage of Canadians who think governments should spend more on bike lanes: 82

Average kilocaloric intake from food per person per day in Canada in 1976: 2,358

(A kilocalorie is a measure of the amount of energy from food)

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