Y’all are getting fat. Maybe go easy on the Latkes this hannuka? We’ve got enough people trying to kill us. No need to do it for them.
From Jpost:

The number of Israelis resorting to these drastic measures is climbing into the hundreds per year. But that is just the tip of the iceberg that is this country’s growing obesity epidemic. Fully 40 percent of adults are overweight, according to Health Ministry statistics, while another 23% are obese. Thousands are classified as morbidly obese or even superobese. Worse, these numbers are rising.

What this means is nothing short of an emergency. Research shows a clear link between obesity and a wide range of health problems, with significant increases in the risk of developing heart disease, hypertension (high blood pressure), stroke, diabetes, certain cancers (e.g. breast cancer and intestinal cancer), osteoarthritis, breathing problems and more. The strain that this puts on the public health system and the economy is immense: NIS 10 billion or more per year in direct costs of treatment and indirect costs from sick days and lack of production, according to various estimates.

Of course, the human costs are tremendous.

Indeed, researchers in Europe and the US have found that obesity can shorten life by as many as 13 years.

They are also unlike surgery for “normal” people. Treating morbidly obese patients entails unique circumstances.

“It can be difficult to sedate them,” says Abu Abeid. “Sometimes the patients are so large that we need two operating tables just to hold them.”

About the author

grandmuffti

14 Comments

  • Wow, that is high. I was always under the assumption that Israelis were thin (and gorgeous!)!

  • And funnily enough, sufganyot stem from a German pastry called “Berliner” or “Berliner Pfannkuchen”; now available all year round, but typically eaten during Carnival before the Christian Lent.

    In a perfect world, somebody’s shape wouldn’t matter.

  • Sufganiyot sound delicious, but I don’t have a deep fryer so I won’t be having any. 🙁

  • Your average Israeli kid is still thinner than the American ones, but just last week I saw a bunch of little Jerusalem boys “trying” to run to the Neve Yaakov pool, and they looked awful. Most were overweight and many didn’t even try to keep up.

  • Yael, you can use an average cooking pot and raps oil. The oil’s hot enough when a drop of water or a wooden spoon make it sizzle. (If the oil’s too cold, the dough will absorb fat.) Use a slotted spoon or something similar to turn around and remove. Let drain for a bit in a bowl or on a platter lined with kitchen roll. Powder with icing sugar.

  • Anyone who goes to a pool regularly can testify to the fact that Israeli kids have, on the average, gotten considerably fatter over the last decade. And if you watch what they snack on, it’s no surprise. My bet is that a large proportion of the excess weight comes from two sources: 1. Deep-fried snack foods like the stupendously popular Bamba and Bisli and 2. supersize Cokes. A decade ago kids still came to the pool with sandwiches from home, usually typical Israeli ones with egg or cheese and lots of vegetables. Now they buy junk food.

  • Haim W. –

    I don’t think there is any one food that is to blame. There has been an enormous lifestyle shift – more kids living the suburban life, mall-walking or sitting in front of the TV. Israelis who are now in their 40s grew up in a country with very limited TV programming, no malls, and almost no fast food (besides falafel and shwarma). They also had longer school days and played outside.

    All that has changed dramatically.

    Froylein –

    Does rapeseed oil have any special properties for frying?

    I used peanut oil in the US – and solid shortening for things like donuts – but here I use soy and/or margarine.

  • I don’t think I have seen an obese person in Israel. Overweight-yes, very curvy- very much but Obese not really.
    I have to say I have seen heavier kids at my sons school. But most are not.

    By the way there is a recipie for oven baked Sufganiot.

  • B-D, the advantages are good frying qualities (neutral taste, little squirting), low cholesterol, and in Britain it’s cheap (IIRC, Yael lives in Scotland).

Leave a Comment