It’s no secret that The Biggest Loser is an abomination, even so Michelle Obama called the show’s contestants “Role Models.” Really? Role models? [tw: potentially triggering eating disorder talk for the rest of this paragraph] Consider for a moment if someone who wasn’t fat told their doctor that they were behaving like the contestants on TBL: -severely restricting calories, exercising 8 hours a day, eating large amounts of food that are “forbidden” on their current “diet” and then exercising all night to “make up for it”, and manipulating their weight for their weekly weigh in with dehydration. I hope against hope that the doctor would not say “good for you, you’re a role model.”
Is it strange to anyone else that even with the big (and problematic in many ways) push toward locally grown whole foods, fat people are still encouraged, including by doctors, to go on Jenny Craig and/or Nutrisystem and microwave food that comes to them frozen in plastic baggies? Or Medifast where you consume 5 reconstituted soy protein based “meals” a day? I’ve been to several farmer’s markets and never saw even one package of “parmesan puffs” made from reconstituted soy protein there. Again, I’m not arguing for any specific type of eating, I’m just trying to point out the ways that fat people and thin people are given very different messages.
I don’t believe that the same behavior is good for fat people but dangerous for thin people, I don’t think that we should diagnose and treat in some people what we recommend and prescribe to others.
Health is not an obligation or barometer of worthiness. It’s multidimensional and not entirely within our control. It’s not guaranteed under any circumstances. That said, it’s supremely annoying to me that that we have to fight to get decent information about health. But, just because so many other people aren’t using any common sense, and just because so many businesses put profit in front of health or truth doesn’t mean that we have to buy into it.
Don’t forget – it’s Weight Stigma Awareness Week! Check out today’s linkss:
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