We are still enduring the time of year when at least every other person is doggedly attempting to stick to some sort of diet.
If we are not starving ourselves, the chances are that somebody at home or at work is boring us witless with endless tales of their daily calorie intake and how a kale and spinach smoothie is not that dissimilar to cheesecake.
We don’t have long to wait long before the optimism and purpose of the the now not-so-new year dies off completely and the near pristine running shoes are consigned to the cupboard under the stairs for another 11 months. Biscuits that resemble scented polystyrene will soon be replaced with hot cross buns and, for many, the battle against the bulge will downgraded to an occasional skirmish, brought on by the prospect of having to squeeze into a swimming costume in the summer.
Yes, there are millions of people who don’t share my flippant attitude to a good diet and exercise and will gladly eschew the dulcet tones of Messrs Robinson and Humphrys on the Today programme and instead do a couple of miles of pavement pounding before a breakfast consisting of grapefruit and nuts. Good luck to them I say but there are those who sneer at tubsters like me and believe that we should get off of our wobbly backsides and take responsibility for our expanding waistlines.
Words like lazy and bone idle are thrown around at people who struggle with their weight but, as the famous verse doesn’t go, sticks and stones will break my bones but sausages won’t hurt me.
Besides, folk, who like me, have to lay on the bed to put their jeans on, now have science on their side as there is new evidence that there really is such a thing as a ‘skinny gene’. This revelation has been seen as vindication for generations of armchair experts who have argued for years that the weight they gain isn’t their fault.
The study has involved researchers closely looking at thousands of people and their lifestyles and the conclusion is that many skinny people stay thin due to their genetic makeup.
One of the academics who led the research has been quoted as saying that thin people have a “lower burden of genes that increase a person's chances of being overweight and not because they are morally superior."
The conclusion is clear: the majority of us have far less control over our weight than we would like to believe and we shouldn’t rush to make a judgement as to why somebody might have a rear end that can be seen from Space. It is, quite literally, in our genes.
Of course, the argument doesn’t end there as the very clever people who conducted this exhaustive study are not saying that obesity is fine and we can all eat Double Deckers and pasties before we start work in the morning.
What they are saying is what we thought we knew about weight gain wasn’t necessarily the full story and that people who have long protested about how they cannot shift those extra pounds, no matter how they try, might well have a point.
It seems that science is doing a grand job of trying to convince society that it needs to be a little less judgemental, although I won’t be able to give up on the diets just yet.