Last week troops were starving due to “food insecurity”, now they’re starving themselves in a “pervasive culture of eating disorders”

| August 5, 2021

Pfc. Alisa Davis, an engineer with the 176th Engineer Company, is measured to ensure that she is within the Army height and weight standards at Snohomish National Guard Armory on Oct. 3, 2015. (U.S. Army National Guard Photo by Spc. Maggie Booker, 122nd Public Affairs Operation Center)

Last week I mentioned how the “DoD “all in” on combating “food insecurity” in the ranks. I linked in that article to the earlier discussion on what “food insecurity” means here; 1/5th of military families are starving!!!  Basically, you’re “insecure” about your food if you’ve ever eaten something ’cause you ran out of cash to eat what you want. First world problems, I tell ya.

This week, Task and Purpose highlights what they call a “pervasive culture of eating disorders” within the US military. As evidence they relate the story of a US Army first lieutenant who was failing her tape test (used to calculate body fat percentage) while she was in the Army’s graduate program, putting her master’s degree in jeopardy. In the most ironic of ironies, she was completing her free master’s course work (while seemingly receiving active duty O-2 pay) in the field of nutrition. You can’t make this stuff up.

She had trouble meeting the standard before she joined;

So she started restricting her diet. She was a nutrition student, Dyal reasoned; while she knew what she was doing wasn’t necessarily healthy, she figured she could handle it. And besides, she anticipated strict dieting for only a short period of time to drop weight and get into the program. Yet over the next year, she become “hyper conscious” of the food she ate, hungry “most of the time,” and only allowed herself to eat certain foods for every meal.

By January 2018, Dyal had completed the Army’s basic officer leader course and was starting the master’s program in nutrition. That was when the pressure really began, she said, recalling an overwhelming stigma over Army dietitians needing to be taped.

It sounds like this young lady either had a pre-existing condition or at the least a predilection. Yeah, the tape test sucks. Yes, it’s very common for people to avoid eating in the week(s) leading up to it. Yes, people dehydrate themselves for it. It creates a lot of anxiety (it did in me, that’s for sure). These things do not lead to a “pervasive culture” of eating disorders. You suck it up (in the case of the waist measurement, you literally suck it up), pass, and then move on with your life for another 11-12 months.

If you’re wondering where Task and Purpose collected all their datapoints to paint a sweeping picture of the US military being filled with anorexic and bulimic troops, they do mention their exhaustive journalistic means;

This article is based on interviews with 13 service members across the military — men and women, officers and enlisted.

Category: Army, Who knows

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Hack Stone

This article is based on interviews with 13 service members across the military – men and women, officer and enlisted.

No mention of men who identify as women, women who identify as men, officers who behave like enlisted, nor enlisted who think they are officers. This survey is totally worthless, as it does not reflect an accurate cross section of today’s military.

Dan

I had to report this comment as you left out generals who think they are Twitter stars. Discrimination cannot be tolerated unless it’s against the right wing white supremacist beef eating capitalists.

Top W Kone

Trying to figure out what is going on in the photo.

It is old (ACU’s) but since the late 1900’s (1989 at least) there is no body fat measure of the chest/breast

At the larynx, waist at the navel, and the hips – most protruding part.

Dose/did the NG have different measures for state service?

26Limabeans

Looks like a 42 band size for a bra.

Anonymous

There was a CPT like that in my unit and she wasn’t fat, if you follow.

Jay

I pick up what you’re putting down.

Anonymous

She later when into “movies”…

Graybeard

I was wondering about that as well – but knowing nothing of the procedure(s) involved wasn’t gonna comment.

With the variations in breast sizes for healthy women, that would be irrational. But the 5-sided Insane Asylum is not known for high degrees of rationality.

26Limabeans

I do not recall seeing many fatties in Viet of the Nam.

Ex-PH2

Ditto: I never saw a “fat” sailor or Marine unless it was someone about to be piped over the side (to retirement).

Ret_25X

the body fat “problem” started when we stopped marching everywhere.

Back when I joined, we road marched literally everywhere any time the 1SG saw an opportunity.

Going to a class? 6 mile hump to the classroom…even if it was literally across the street.

But by the late 90s we were cut loose to drive or a bus was laid on. Road marches are time consuming and we had so much more “important” things to do. Things like sit on our asses and wait.

The solution here is easy. Go back to marching and walking everywhere. Burn 2-3000 calories a day this way and the body fat program will just no longer be needed.

Anyway, that’s my perspective on this whole BS situation.

SFC D

Absofuckinglutely!

Sparks

Thank you and well said.

A Proud Infidel®™

BUTbutbut THEN you’ll have the underperformers having *GASP*their feewings hurt by those who outperform them and…

timactual

Indeed. It boggles my mind that an army not actively engaged in combat cannot find the time to keep its troops fit. Then again, my mind is still boggled because they went to a special uniform for PT.

rgr769

In my seven months of humping a rifle and a rucksack in the jungle covered mountains, I never saw any either. But my last brigade commander, a last minute assignment from the JCS in the five-sided puzzle palace, looked to be about forty pounds over weight. In addition to being an aging fattie, he was one of the worst commanders I ever served.

Claw

You just described my last Brigade Commander./s

The first time I saw him I thought he was the new JAG Colonel coming to our building (in April 1990) to introduce himself around to the powers that be.

Anonymous

First World problems

Sapper3307

Jay

If Angry would shave his arms and chest….he probably would make weight.

KoB

Give all the fatties a high colonic and send them on a 10 mile march…with a full field pack.

Commissioner Wretched

Nice touch.

KoB

Caught that reference, didn’t ya CW!

ChipNASA

ChipNASA

Wrong, (me) It was Col Blake, bless his character

Graybeard

13 people questioned.

Only a journalist major would consider that a good sample.

Jay

My wife was prego with our first kid my 2nd year on recruiting duty. Between that and generally eating like a trash panda (mountain dew, jack in the box tacos, etc…), I put on 25lbs while she was pregnant. I went from being 30lbs under max to juuuuuuuust scraping by. Depending on the day, I was ON THE DAMN LINE.

So what did I do? I carved out time, dragged my ass out of bed at dark 30, put in some pavement PT time, and dropped back to an acceptable weight. I did this while on recruiting duty, where nutrition is an afterthought. It’s not hard, but the first thing people have to do is get it in their HEAD they are going to lose weight.

11B-Mailclerk

“Habit” beats “willpower” every time.

Roh-Dog

The tape test is ridiculous. If a Soldier scored 90% on 2/3rds or more in events on the APFT/CFT and passes all with >75% total they should be exempted.
We have to give the thick trunkéd/pencil necked a carrot because the tape test ‘stick’ just doesn’t work.
It’s all too easy to injure vertebrae by overuse during neck strengthening, or like a lot of dumb asses giving themselves heat stroke in the sauna wrapped in saran, wearing a sweat suit.

A Proud Infidel®™

What gets to me is that some 150 pound “PT Gazelle” is considered a superior Soldier because they can max a PT Test while some 250 pound Jock type who can bench 250-0300 pounds, ruck from now until doomsday and push a 5 ton truck over by himself is considered “obese” and unworthy.

Roh-Dog

Bingo. You’d figure that an Army that wants to hang ever-increasing weight of gear on dudes would want neanderthals that could lift themselves over a wall with said gear.

But yeah, that twig over their looks really, really good in Blues. Just don’t take the tin soldier out in a stiff breeze.

11B-Mailclerk

Knew several Samoans while I was active. Only one was wiry. The others looked “padded”.

All were PT monsters.

All except the skinny one had tape trouble.

That was a crock of shit.

A Proud Infidel®™

Mu Great Uncle was a USMC DI in San Diego during WWII and back then, having to take a new Recruit out behind the wood pile for wall to wall counseling happened regularly. His advice to my Dad when he was a kid? “NEVER mess with a Samoan!!!”

Dustoff

Use to see it all the time. On battalion runs. All of us skinny fuckers were up front of the formation cruising, and at about mile 3 to 4 the “ripped” muscle dudes were hurting, tongues hanging out, looking like they were in hypovolemic shock.

11B-Mailclerk

But when you have to load the Deuce with ammo cans or with water jugs, right the fuck now, who ya gonna call?

SFC D

I fought that for years. I had cabledogs that consistently passed the APFT between 190-220, could bust their asses all day every day running fiber all over Speicher but my 1SG was constantly bitching about low scores. Guy was the most amazing ass kisser I saw in my entire career, even the BN CSM made jokes about it.

ninja

The LT mentioned in the Task and Purpose, article, Rachel Dyal, wrote this 2019 article for the Army Times: “Make Lifestyle Changes To Improve Your Heart Health” https://www.army.mil/article/218145/make_lifestyle_changes_to_improve_your_heart_health I guess the LT is too young to remember or even know how Karen Carpenter of The Carpenters passed away: “Singer-Songwriter Karen Carpenter Dies” https://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/karen-carpenter-dies-of-anorexia “Karen Carpenter, a singer who long suffered under the burden of the expectations that came with pop stardom, died on February 4, 1983, succumbing to heart failure brought on by her long, unpublicized struggle with anorexia.” “Early on the morning of February 4, 1983, while staying in her parents home in Downey, Karen suffered a deadly heart attack, brought on by the physiological stresses placed on her system by the disease whose name soon entered the public consciousness: anorexia nervosa. She was only 32 years old.” “Carpenter had a fixation with her weight from her earliest days performing with her brother, Richard, in and around their hometown of Downey, California. As a teenager, she dropped at least 25 pounds on a popular and severe weight-loss program known as “the Water Diet,” so that by the time she and Richard burst on the pop scene with their smash hit “Close To You” in the summer of 1970, she was a thin but healthy 20-year-old carrying 120 lbs. on a 5′ 5″ frame. She maintained that weight through the early years of the Carpenters’ success, yet it appears that Karen’s insecurities about her appearance only grew, even as she… Read more »

SFC D

And if Cass Elliot had shared that sandwich with Karen Carpenter, they’d both be here today.

Too soon?

ninja

SFC D:

Ironically, Cass Elliot ALSO died of heart failure…and she was only 32 years old when she passed away.

Four years later, Keith Moon, Drummer for the Who, died in the same apartment that Cass Elliot died in…and he was 32 years old as well…

Three Performers…all gone at the age of 32.

Do you think we have some TAH Youngsters who are thinking “Who are those folks? Never heard of them…” which is OK, because the ninja family does not recognize alot of names of today’s Performers, especially those with unique names OR their music…especially Rap music..

Bring Back The Who.

😉😎

SFC D

I’m surprised Keith Moon, “Patent British Exploding Drummer”, lasted as long as he did. I think I was 12 When Cass Elliot died, and the original story (and now urban legend) was that she choked on a ham sandwich.

Fyrfighter

Never got into The Who.. or most of the brit bands of that era.. now if you want something a little different, try The HU ninja…

Dustoff

How’s about spew alert next time..LOL

Hack Stone

Hack Stone got reported to HR for once saying that he was hungrier than Ethiopian at a Karen Carpenter concert. That remark would probably get him fired today.