With the widespread proliferation of ‘wellness’ growing everyday as the baby-boomer generation realizes the importance of health, I believe it will be hard to find fat people in the future. In addition, streaming video is making obesity even less acceptable than it was before; we see each other way too often, and everyone knows that the camera adds ten pounds.
These changes in technology and an increasing awareness of both the Earth and the harmful effects of unhealthy, processed food compared with natural alternatives will make fatness even less likely. Even the fitness industry is seeing a shift from traditional body-building focuses to an increased attention on flexibility and functional strength.
In addition to societal trends that influence personal health, the science fiction movie genre has always had visions of personal health in the future. While these predictions may be clouded by Hollywood’s tendency to use more attractive people in movie roles (an unrealistic representation of what people really look like), the stories that are told still shed light on our changing predictions for future fitness.
In the recent animated science fiction movie, Wall-E, mankind is plagued by an overdependence on machines. The machines take care of everything a person could want, from birth through death; humans are nothing more than fat lobs that float through life on magic chairs that provide them with everything they think they want.
This vision of the future is in stark contrast to the scifi movie classic, Soylent Green, where forced cannibalism doesn’t seem to fill anyone up. Imagine starting a riot over not being able to eat as many people as you want; this would certainly lead to mass-skinniness.
Even in dark visions of the future everyone seems to keep fit and healthy. Look at the underground world of Zion in The Matrix trilogy, nothing but sexy doomed people in rags down there; same thing with the Mars people in Total Recall, sea people in Waterworld, and crazy road people in The Road Warrior.
Sure, we could credit these skinny representations of future people to a lack of food, but they all look ripped to me. So, whether its overpopulation, natural disaster, alien invasion, world war, zombie out-break, or plain-old embarrassment, I think humanity won’t have a problem with obesity in the future.