I hope she at least took the stairs (and no, in my defence I stopped by to drop off a DVD). We pretended to not see each other there (I knew she saw me when she turned away at her table). Obviously I'm making some generalizations here, that 1) This is a frequent occurence 2) Most fast food is unhealthy. And no, the irony of having a fastfood restaurant in the hospital isn't lost on me; I have no say in this matter, unfortunately.
It's true though that excess weight and obesity is the new epidemic. A third of Americans are obese. And while this is probably reflective of numerous factors, it's pretty clear a lot of it has to do with the changing environment. Less physical activity (in part due to the conveniences of daily life technology has given us), more easily accesible high caloric junkfoods, perhaps financial (healthy food is more expensive than fastfood).
Obviously, it's really more complex than this. Nonetheless, there is a tendency as well to find a medical explanation. To find a condition, a disease, that has caused all this weight gain. And (perhaps judgmental of me, I apologize) some denial as well (maybe because of the shift of cultural norms, of what's considered 'good' and what's 'bad' for health). And so, I see at least 5 consults a month to work up issues like inability to lose weight. I suppose it's human nature and I speak from personal experience too; it's far easier to find a disease and to take a pill, than to actually change one's habits. Far, far easier.
And yet, I continue to get consults from referring physicians, and from self refers, for weight issues. It turns out to be frustrating for the poor patients, because they wait 2 months to see me, then undergo a series of tests, only to be told the hormones are normal.
Unfortunately, this epidemic will only continue to rise in our lifetime. And I'm afraid I won't have any easy answers to this problem.