West Germany: The Adipose Society

Since the days when Hitler opted for guns rather than butter, West Germany has known near-starvation, austerity and, for the past decade, such heady abundance that today it has become the Adipose Society. Following the early '50s, when the postwar boom set off what Germans call the Edelfresswelle, the gorgeous gobbling wave, buttocks and bosoms have expanded even more rapidly than the economy, and doctors have recognized two universal ailments: Doppelkinnepidemie, double-chin epidemic, and Hängebauch, or bellyhang. The majority of Germans, from newborn babes to Cabinet ministers, are fatter today than at any other time in this century. A top...

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