I found an interesting study today (http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/02/100205091831.htm) A Monash University-led nationwide study into the health beliefs and behaviours of obese people…here is what they found. It is really refreshing actually. It admits that the current anti obesity rhetoric not only doesn’t work, but it stigmatizes a large part of the population.
“”Severely obese individuals felt an urgent and desperate need to change their health behaviours, but felt completely powerless to do so. Most felt worried and scared about the potential health consequences of their weight. Most felt blamed and ashamed by public health and education campaigns about obesity, which did little to actually help them address their weight,” Dr Thomas said.”
Well duh….what are we SUPPOSED to think…everywhere you look…all magazines, the news, tv shows, the internet, the radio, your family, bosses and teachers are all telling you: Lose weight fatty! look! it’s so easy….suzy here lost 75 lbs in 3 weeks just by taking this magic pill/powder/cream……all you have to do is exercise enough…..buy this gym membership! and these weights….and clothes….and viedoes….yoga mats… books…lessons…private training……..and live on air and you too will FINALLY be enough. Kids are fed “eat this not that” bs in schools. (im ok with the food pyramid, but unless you’ve been in a elementary school in the past 3 years you REALLY havent seen the propaganda.) Even though one of the VERY best ways to encourage disordered eating is to make a “good food” “bad food” relationship with food, schools nutrition education is to make chips/soda/candy BAD and celery/veggies/skim milk GOOD. I have an idea….how about not letting “the bad food” be sold at schools…i bet kids will make “healthy choices” if there isn’t a vending machine filled with pop….and icecream (for extra money of course) available EVERY DAY at lunch.
“Most of the study participants in this category[30-40 BMI range] deliberately sought to distance themselves from public health messages about obesity and the word obesity because of the social stigma attached to the condition. They also stigmatised those who were fatter than themselves.””
Which is why we get the size 12-16s getting all pissy every time you mention food or movement FREAKING out…..because they CANT get obese and be vilified like us. If they slip in their weight loss vigilance for even a moment they too will get omg fat and be a slob, lazy, ugly, and a failure. AND THATS THE TRAP. That is what making fat=bad does…it pits us against each other.
“The campaigns don’t seem to be having much of an effect. Those in the mild-moderately obese category said their weight creates feelings of social isolation or discrimination, yet don’t fully understand the health risks associated with the extra kilos,” Dr Thomas.”In contrast, people with a significant weight issue realised they were at an extremely high risk of disease but didn’t feel they could change. Further confirmation that the stigma and social stereotyping associated with obesity — including from government campaigns — is vastly impacting on individuals’ beliefs and behaviours.”Society’s attitudes need to change, governments need to refocus health messages…”
again duh. BECAUSE DIETS DONT WORK. And i will say that every freaking day for the rest of my life if I have to in order to battle this horrible misconception that makes the powers that be 120 BILLION dollars A YEAR. All you do when you put out the fat=bad message is create a whole class of people that hate themselves. It’s weird, and reminds me of an abusive relationship. The very first thing an abusive partner does is tear you down, tell you no one will ever love you but him, make you hate yourself so you stay…..same thing the diet industry is doing to keep people coming back for more…..hummmmmm.
Think about it….the honeymoon of a diet (and an abusive relationship) is awesome: passionate, elated, exciting. It feels familiar, too (well you’ve done it before for so long). You know it’s not good for you, you know you will pay for it in the end….But you look so GOOD (the sex/toys/gifts/family time is so GOOOD) and its better for you anyway. You’ll be healthy (you wont break up the family/house/circle of friends/dog) ect ct….but then it starts to fail…it controls you….you stop losing weight….and start getting hungry/hair falls our/ you get injured exercising (its stops being fun and he started going off the handle again) but you feel like shit…you arent good enough for anything else ….anyway you see where this is going and the point I am trying to make. But, like lots of women trapped in a dysfunctional, abusive relationship, those in the throes of the control don’t see it…and will fight you when you point it out. And you can’t break away until you are ready… And sometimes, like in abusive relationships, you die because you didn’t open your eyes fast enough and wake up to the truth. (sorry to be so blunt, but I have lost 2 friends to ED and 1 to a drunk angry husband.)