Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Fat Acceptance

I've been reading a bit about the fat acceptance movement and am having mixed feelings about it. It's a loaded issue to say the least. Discrimination of any kind is an ugly part of our society and having spent the majority of my life fat, I know exactly what it's like to be on the receiving end of such treatment.

Despite the debates and arguments, I feel that obesity is a disease and that too much fat is unhealthy. If it causes you to get winded going up a flight of stairs, how can that be considered healthy? I'm not a doctor or a scientist but I've been a Geriatric nurse for over 15 years and I've seen the effects that obesity has on the body. I've also spent time in a hospital bed due to obesity related health problems. 2007 was not a good year for me. Apparently it's wrong to say that fat is unhealthy, that it is judgmental to think so. My personal experience tells me otherwise.

Diets don't work, that is one point that I truly believe, but I also believe that obesity, the kind of fat that leads to metabolic syndrome, immobility, COPD, heart disease, is a curable disease. Of course it's not easily cured, the approach has to be kind, nurturing and has to be sought out at the roots. It's not a one-size-fits-all cure, either. But the cure is inside each of us. Our bodies have amazing healing powers that can be released if we choose to embrace good health.

Don't let anyone tell you that you are any less of person because you don't fit some media-generated ideal. But by the same token, don't let unhealthy fat get in the way of living the happiest, most vibrant life possible.

2 comments:

  1. I completely agree with you. I also believe that while all persons should be accepted and respected no matter how they look, being overweight is unhealthy and we all should try to take care of ourselves and our health.
    Good post!

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  2. To me, fat acceptance is a no-brainer because it's simply a matter of civil rights. It's not tied into one's health at all.

    Is it unhealthy to be overweight? For most people, absolutely yes. But there's unhealthy people of "normal" size as well. No one deserves to be treated as a lesser human being for any reason whatsoever, especially aesthetics.

    Granted, being overweight comes with a cost: there are naturally limitations and it's unrealistic to expect that everyone's needs will be accommodated. This part of "fat activism", the assumption that society has an obligation to go out of it's way to do so, has always confused me.

    Definitely mixed feelings. Thank you for the topic!

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