The 1950's

The 1950’s Ways Of Losing Weight……….Retro

Hello, welcome once again to Losing Weight With Pat. Today’s topic will be on losing weight like it’s the 1950’s

Thin People
There was not too much about weight gain in the 50’s

Let’s jump into the past. That’s because losing weight in today’s world is really hard. That’s why I want to jump back to the fifties. Even though I was not around then, life seems so much simpler than today.

Back then, you didn’t have a fast food restaurant on every corner like today. Back then, if you went to McDonald’s it was a treat. Today, it’s an everyday routine. We eat fast food all the time. No time to cook. At least, that is what we tell ourselves.

You didn’t see a lot of fat people back then. Obesity was not a real threat. Today it is. We have to wake up and face it. Stop hiding it. So let’s take a look at the fifties.

Control Portion Size

Portion size
Got to control your portion when eating

Back in the old days, portion size was not a problem. We all could learn a little about portion size if you would just look how they did it back in the fifties. Today’s diet consists of refined sugar and simple carbohydrates this alone can lead to obesity in the long run.

Researchers at Cambridge and Oxford believe that if we go back to the fifties, there we might find the answer. Studies have found that in the past 20 years, pies, muffins, bagels, and pizza have become big products in the Supermarkets. All of these are unhealthy, but we buy them because they are quick to fix and we enjoy them.

Portion size has increased with many people eating more than they did in the 50’s. We should at least try to cut down 159 calories from our daily intake.

So together let’s work on that. If we would just control our portion size, that 159 calories will probably not be a problem.

Foods They Ate In The 1950’s

In The 1950’s, I think parents were more strict on what they filled their pantry with. Don’t get me wrong. They ate candy and other junk food. But they knew how to control the eating of such food. They didn’t eat it all the time like we do. Also, like I mention above about fast foods. They use to go out about once a month and that was a treat. they would even dress up.

Back in the 70’s when I was growing up, we use to go to McDonald’s every other Friday. Man did me, my brother and sister get excited.

Most people back in the day had vegetable gardens. They would choose seeds from catalogs every year and do the gardening chores. Huge pots of vegetables were made, and excess vegetables were canned.

The food groups
Make better choices

Dinners consisted of meat, potatoes, and a green vegetable, dinner rolls, salad, and dessert. Back in the 1950’s, they ate a well-balanced, healthy meals.

Here is a list of the food that a family back in the 50’s would buy for a year:

  • Evaporated milk (56 cans)
  • Cheese (20 lbs)
  • Butter (56 lbs)
  • milk (693 quarts)
  • Peaches (3 bushels)
  • Grapes ( 2 boxes)
  • Eggs (131 dozens)
  • Apples (2 crates)
  • Oranges (2 crates)
  • Cherries (11 cans)
  • Flour (450 lbs)
  • Sugar (350 lbs)
  • Potatoes (690 lbs)
  • Squash (1 basket)
  • Cucumber (1 basket)
  • Ice Cream (8 and a half gallons)
  • Lettuce (2 crates)
  • Carrots (1 crate)
  • Spinach (22 cans)
  • Cereal (48 packages)
  • Coffee ( 39 lbs)
  • Team (12 lbs)
  • Ham (144 lbs)
  • Pork Loins (132 lbs)
  • Salmon (20 lbs)
  • Chicken (31)
  • Turkey (2)
  • Beef (300 lbs)

This is not the complete list, but I just wanted you to get the idea. Some of these are not smart choices, but they do balance it out. This is a list for a family of 4 in a year.

Exercises from the 1950’s

I’ll briefly tell you about the different kinds of Exercises they did in the 50’s. These are simple.

Learn from the past
  • Jumping Jacks: This is probably one of the easiest exercises in the world you can do. When the armed forces were bringing in new recruits, most of them were unfit for duty. Because of the low levels of physical fitness, John “Black Jack” Pershing developed Jumping Jacks. This would increase cardiovascular endurance in soldiers.
  • Resistance Machines: Jack LaLanne developed the resistance pulley machines. This included the leg extension equipment.  Jack opened up a health club in California. He actually started this as far back as 1936 but didn’t really become popular until the 50″s. LaLanne is considered by some as the more father of fitness. It became popular when he launched a fitness T.V. show.
  • Calisthenics: Jack Lalanne also brought Calisthenics into people’s homes through his T.V. show. What really did this was his aerobic workouts and water aerobic programs. Some of these included one-sided jumping jacks, marching in place, high kicks, and leg lifts.
  • Five Basic Exercises: Bill Orban came up with the 5BX, five basic exercise program. Bill was a Canadian football land hockey player.  He started this program for the Royal Canadian Air Force. He stated that if you exercise 15 minutes a day, 3 times a week that you would stay fit. The five exercises included were touching your toes, ab crunches, push-ups, a stationary run and leg kicks.

These are just a few examples of what kind of exercise they did in the 50’s. Look at them, they stayed fit.

My Final Words

So, tell me what do you think? We could all learn a thing or two from the 1950’s. Losing weight included. Learn from the foods they ate and exercises they did. Let’s all start eating better. Cooking at home and just go out every once in a while. That should be a treat for yourself.

My next post will be on the diets people went on in the 1950’s. Also, the kind of diets we have today that we learned from the 50’s.

If you have any questions or need help learning more. Please leave a comment and I will reply back.

Thank you for coming to Losing Weight With Pat for your weight needs.




2 Comments Add yours
  1. I enjoyed reading the article on how eight lose was not much of an issue back in the 1950s due to not having Fast Food restaurants on every street corner. Like you said, McDonalds was a treat back then and not a everyday routine. I also think with more and more women working outside the home these days than they did in the 1950s, there are less meals being home cooked.

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