There are few things that drive human beings as hard as diet. That applies to the female species far more than the male, but that is changing.
Diets are fads. They make some people lots of money, but in the end, the best way to get healthy is to stick to a pragmatic life style, and that is very difficult and/or affordable for many of us.
The title of this piece does not, surprisingly, refer to the amount of fat on a human body.
The single biggest problem in eating is money, while the second is body image perception.
This applies to those who have little or no money, to those who have too much. There are relatively few of us who can afford to diet, or to eat "healthily," and that depends on which diet you are following at the time. And the peoplle who have the most the influence on our eating lifestyles are usually those who stand to make the most money.
Here's the big question - what is a healthy eating lifestyle?
It depends on who you ask.
The people who have the most influence are huge multi-national companies who have "serious investments" in seeling the food they sell. Only a few - if any - actually produce the food they sell. But they dictate what they buy, and the price they pay for it.
These companies do things that appear to be "kind and supportive to consumers." They sponsor peer-reviewed studies, they conduct "research" into everything to do with the entire food chain, amongst other things.
It is only when you get "real" unbought scientists that do what is right start pushing back against the tsunami of so-called data that their real colours come out - and they can be very dangerous.
This is the pyramid that is at the root of a lot of the controversy around dieting.
Created in 1992 by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) it has been modified, and even turned on it's head by some scientists.
It advocates eating breads and grains as the major proportion of your diet. This food group is very high in carbohydrates.
In the years since 1992, western countries that adopted this pyramid have seen a staggering rise in life-style diseases, primarily diabetes.
Western countries have literally swollen with fat and obese people, and deaths from cardiac and endocrynology events have soared.
Despite the advent of gyms, personal trainers and other artificial slimming aids, even surgery, the deaths have continued to rise.
Throughout the years, the pyramid of money harvested by the food value chain has continued to grow. They are some of the biggest and most profitable companies on the planet.
It's the food we eat that is so important, but we are so bombarded by so-called scientific evidence of the benefits of what is really junk, that we have almost become addicted to the process of dieting.
Add to this bombardment of food-porn (see the Wikipedia definition here) the insidous bombardment of how we look. This has been historically and primarily aimed at women, but this is changing.
Men are also targeted now.