Thanks for the pm, Cherish! This is an interesting thread.
I read something about how eating fewer meals can aid weightloss. My theory (which is the same as many people's) is that everyone is different, and you just have to find what works for you.
Not eating breakfast can be a bad idea for many people as they will eat something naughty later in the morning. If I don't eat breakfast, however, I won't eat anything until lunch. I never used to eat breakfast and my weight was nice and stable. I started eating breakfast when I started a fairly physically taxing job. I was only eating a large-ish bowl of healthy cereal with no sugar and semi-skimmed milk. I've put on at least 10lbs since I started doing that. Now, there might well be other factors coming into play, I don't know for sure. At the moment, I've stopped breakfast again and I'm going to monitor things.
I'm not so sure though that there was less fat in people's diets years ago. Less junk, yes. My mum was brought up on a typically 1950s diet. Fried breakfasts were common and meals and desserts were often stodgy and high in fat. They were homemade and with plenty of vegetables though. People also walked more.
Why are there more fat people?
I think that people generally have more disposable income. There is more fast food and junk food than ever and it's also cheap! Further compounding the problem is that many people don't have time to cook properly and others don't know how to. Throw in cars and various labour saving appliances, and you're going to get a fatter nation.