ACP W131: Elementary Composition
20 February 2013
In the five section article, “Rethinking Weight” by Amanda Spake, the author outlines the conflict surrounding whether obesity classifies as a disease. Spake discusses the prevalence of obesity in America and sheds light on the idea that obesity may contain genetic roots. The article continues with the author’s insights into whether weight or fitness retains the most importance. Spake concludes the article with thoughts on the growing concern of insurance coverage and obesity treatment. The author claims that “At the heart of this obesity epidemic is a debate over whether obesity is a biological ‘disease’ and should be treated like any other life-threatening illness – cancer, heart disease – or whether it is simply a risk factor for these killers” (282). Spake successfully supports the claim by incorporating a narrative account, explaining the biology, psychology, and scientific research of obesity, and stating how society may already classify obesity as a disease, but Spake strays from the idea of obesity qualifying as a disease when she describes the role insurance companies play when paying for obesity treatment.
The article begins with a narrative account of Maria Pfisterer. Spake uses Maria Pfisterer’s story to reveal the struggles obesity and dieting inflict upon a person. According to the author, Pfisterer’s many attempted diets, in terms of weight “All resulted in a little lost and more regained,” which supports the idea of weight and dieting inflicting a constant burden in the lives of many Americans (282). Spake also included in the story of Pfisterer’s weight battle the idea that no matter how hard Pfisterer tried to lose weight or what method Pfisterer thought to try, the weight never permanently disappeared, which in turn supports the concept of obesity being more than just a Refner 2
physical ailment. The author also discusses the...