Study shows that Women are Getting Fat because they’re Slacking Off on the Housework

Posted by PITHOCRATES - March 2nd, 2013

Week in Review

Talk about your war on women.  Here’s a salvo from the New York Times.  That reported on a study that said today’s women are fat because they don’t spend enough time cleaning, cooking, and doing laundry (see Does Less Housework Really Equal a Larger Waistline? by Lylah M. Alphonse posted 2/28/2013 on Yahoo! Shine).

A New York Times article about a study that links U.S. women’s expanding waistlines to the fact that they do less housework has sparked a wave of outrage online, where readers decried the piece for being sexist.

“Attn ladies, maybe if you put a little more time into housework you wouldn’t be so fat,” tweeted Taylor Lorenz as she shared the article, entitled “What Housework Has to Do With Waistlines.”

“Are you kidding? You just completely discredited yourselves as a newspaper,” commented Agnes Shugardt on the New York Times Facebook page. (Danielle Rhoads-Ha, director of communications for the New York Times, told Yahoo! Shine that since the outcry is over the study, and not the way the article was written or reported, the newspaper had no comment on it.)

It’s tempting to use a sexist expression here for comic relief.  But we shan’t.

Once upon a time women were angry that men didn’t appreciate how hard housework is.  Which it is.  And probably was the reason why women outlived men for so many years.  For as men got softer working office jobs women continued to work hard.  And remained strong.  So women were justifiably angry when men dismissed housework as simply resting on the couch eating bonbons while watching daytime television.  With a little dusting thrown in.  Now women are mad because their careers are not perceived as physically demanding as doing fulltime housework.  Which they aren’t.  For anyone given the choice would opt to work in the office during the day instead of doing housework.  For housework is backbreaking thankless work.  Few appreciate a clean toilet enough to keep it clean.  Unless you’re the one that cleans it.  But one thing certain about housework is that it burns the calories.  Better than any gym membership can.

Women, even ones who manage their homes instead of big businesses, are also less physically active now than they used to be. In 1965, women spent an average of 25.7 hours each week cleaning, cooking, and doing laundry. By 2010, women were spending an average of 13.3 hours each week on housework. Like their male counterparts, women who worked outside of the home are spending far more time sitting down in front a screen at the office these days, but Archer and his team were surprised to find that even women who stayed home were spending more time watching TV—16.5 hours per week in 2010, up from about eight hours a week in 1965…

Given the way technology has changed housework, it’s unlikely that more housework would make much a difference for either gender, though. Old-fashioned vacuum cleaners were clunky and hard to push, requiring a lot more physical energy to use than today’s lightweight models, and bending and stretching to hang laundry on a line in the 1960s burned more calories than transferring a load from the washer to the dryer.

Both men and women are getting softer these days.  Thanks to a higher standard of living.  And quality appliances at affordable prices.  Pity there’s a downside to all this convenience.  It’s putting us in an early grave.

Yes, women were healthier before they left the house to pursue a career.  And slimmer.  As were men.  If you want to see just how skinny we were watch an old movie.  Where all the leading men were skinny.  And borderline malnourished.  Or sit in an old theater.  The seating is pretty tight these days.  For we were a lot skinnier in the old days.  Not only gut-wise.  But shoulder-wise, too.  For if you sit in a theater that was built close to a hundred years ago you’ll be sitting with your shoulders pressing into the shoulders on either side of you.

We’re eating more and exercising less.  This is why our waistlines are expanding.  Especially for women.  For stay-at-home moms run a never ending marathon.  When they give that up to pursue a career they have to join a health club to make up for the exercise they once got for free.  Which they will eventually quit.  As most people do.  Because after a hard day at the office the last thing anyone wants to do is exercise.  They just want to go home and plop down in front of the television.  With a relaxing adult beverage.  Also not good for the waistline.

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