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Blaming The Victim

Come join us for a paddle! It’s a beautiful day, and the water is great. Go ahead and grab your paddleboard and that pool cue and let’s get going!

Hmmm. It seems like you aren’t getting very far. Oh, I see, you just aren’t doing it right. You really need to paddle faster. And you should improve your technique, or you’re really not going to get anywhere. Why can’t you figure this out? Maybe it’s you that is the problem?

This story obviously seems a bit silly. Of course you are not going anywhere, and it has nothing to do with your technique, or number of paddles you do in a minute. It’s because you’re using a pool cue when you really need a paddle. You let me give you some very terrible advice.

As ridiculous as our paddling story sounds, it actually happens in the health and fitness world more than you might think. Dr. Jason Fung, who is a nephrologist, fasting expert, and the author of several books, including The Obesity Code, calls this “blaming the victim”. It happens when you are told you to eat fewer calories, and to burn more calories with exercise. When you try it, it works, sure, but only for a little while. If you lose weight in the beginning, it eventually plateaus. The willpower and energy you had in the beginning are waning. And why do those donuts just look better and better as the days and weeks drag on?

This is when the program fails, and your cold, tired, worn-out body starts gaining all the weight you lost, and then some. You might even blame yourself, or your lack of willpower. You might even get blamed by your trainer, coach, or doctor, for not following the advice better. This is what we mean by “blaming the victim”. You get really bad advice, then feel like it’s your fault when it doesn’t work.

We think it’s time to blame the advice, not the victim. It’s not your fault that counting calories and running your brains out didn’t work. That’s bad advice. We have better advice for you, and it is much more likely to succeed because it is good advice (Hint- we think that health has a LOT more to do with hormones than calories). Now we are paddling with an actual paddle, and we can actually get somewhere!

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