Sam M sends along this link to vintage (ca. 1930s? 1940s?) ads in which women are exhorted to feel bad about themselves for being “skinny,” and to purchase products (e.g., “Wate On”) that will help them gain weight and appear more sexually attractive to men. Writes Sam — who, recall, wrote a good book about his own massive weight loss, which he accomplished without purchasing anybody’s product:

Interesting to me that the message is almost identical to what we are seeing now: You can’t control your weight. You need help. The help of an expert, a doctor… anyone who can help you overcome the absolutely insurmountable challenges that basic biology poses. Because your body is genetically programmed to be too skinny. Just send a check.

Sound familiar?