Figures are misleading and unfair

SOME Shetland people have reacted with anger at the obesity report.

Laura Johnson, 19, from Weis­dale, described it as very unfair.

She said: “BMI isn’t really the best way for measuring how healthy someone is.”

Ms Johnson’s BMI is 22, which is considered a medically healthy BMI. However, she claims that she eats “rubbish” and is actually “incredibly unhealthy”.

“For a while I used to be really really bad with my diet. I used to eat anything I wanted and never put on any weight. I just stayed a size eight no matter what. People used to look at me and think I was really healthy but I wasn’t. I was just eating absolute rubbish.”

“I have started putting on a bit of weight now but I still get away with eating bruck, just not as much as I used to. If I keep eating rubbish, I do see a difference, the weight does go on, but I’m still slim.”

Ms Johnson said she was trying to “get healthy” now, but she was struggling.

“I know that just because I’m not fat doesn’t mean that I’m healthy so I’ve joined the gym and I know I have to keep going, but it’s really hard.

“It doesn’t sound like a very fair report to me. You have to look at more factors than just BMI. I mean, if you looked at my BMI then you could say that I’m healthy, but I’m just starting to get on my way to healthy now. All the rubbish I’ve been eating has made me feel so lethargic, but there could be people out there who are much bigger than me but eat so much better than me. You really have to take more factors on board.”

John Magnus Jeromson, 25, from Brae, nicknamed “Scorie” by friends because of his habit of picking food off of their plates, knows what it’s like to struggle with his weight. He also thought the report painted an unfair picture of Shetland.

“Shetland’s no really any worse than anywhere else. Obviously, being fat is a problem that you have to sort and Shetlanders have to sort it as much as anybody else does, but as far as I can see Glasgow and Aberdeen and other places like that are just as bad as here. It’s just a rubbish, skewed report.”

In April last year Mr Jeromson’s BMI was 35. According to that he was obese, so he decided to lose some weight.

“Basically I just took one look in da mirror and thought it wis time to lose some pounds!” he said.

He joined Scottish Slimmers and lost three and a half stone. Now his BMI is 28, meaning that he is still technically overweight, but no longer obese.

However, he now lives a very active lifestyle, finding the time to keep fit whenever he can by playing sports and attending the gym.

“I exercise flat oot and play plenty of different sports. I’m always trying to keep myself active.

He also eats a very healthy diet which contains lots of fruit and vegetables.

“I eat plenty of stir fries and no bruck, especially no fatty and sugary stuff.”

He added: “There has to be a better, all-round way of measuring folks’ fitness. Yun report just seems to have painted an bad picture of Shetland based on, from what I can see, an unfair way of measuring stuff. Being fat is a problem for the whole country, it’s just the way this report has been done which has singled Shetland out.”


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