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Obesity Drives Car Size?

The following quote is taken from a recent article in the ECONOMIST on the discontent of Americans with the economic state of their country:

Petrol prices, despite their recent retreat, hurt nearly everyone. Adam Julch, an enormous former college football star who is now a manager at a trucking firm in Omaha, Nebraska, complains that he had to trade in his pickup truck for a little Honda Civic. “I’m 350 pounds,” he says, “I feel like I’m in a clown car.”

Two aspects of this quote deserve comment:

1) Yes, larger people need larger cars to move them around – more larger people could mean more larger cars. This is not unlike the idea that it may not be the huge portion sizes in restaurants that lead to obesity but rather it is obesity that leads to larger portions sizes in restaurants (yes, large people need more calories and generally have bigger appetites than thin people) – so restaurants have to serve up portions large enough to feed even their hungriest customers.

2) The fact that this was a former athlete, as are many of my biggest patients, emphasizes that even being a highly successful competitive athlete does not protect you from severe obesity later in life.

Now there is food for thought. Feel free to comment.

Dushesnay, Quebec

Hat Tip to Michael Dwyer for bringing this quote to my attention


  1. I would be surprised and disappointed issue of “fitting in” is addressed by car manufacturers before it is addressed by medical and lifestyle services. Literal obstacles like armed-chairs, turnstyles and small toilet cubicles make it difficult and embarrassing for obese people to access health and fitness services.

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