Posts Tagged ‘weight discrimination’

Ignorance About Obesity Is Common and Reversible

April 11, 2018 — A colleague recently asked: How do you keep doing what you do in the face of so much awful stuff? By awful stuff, she meant flagrant examples of weight bias. Like the Guardian’s recent Op-Ed by Lizzie Cernik, proclaiming “It’s not fine to be fat.” The short answer to our friend’s question is this. Bias […]

Defining the Incredible Talent of Cass Elliot

April 3, 2018 — A brilliant flash of popular music in the middle of the 1960s came from the Mamas and the Papas. And the most memorable performer from that group was Cass Elliot – also known as Mama Cass. This was well before anyone thought about obesity as a medical condition. The group sang naive lyrics about “no […]

When One Size Fits All, Truth Suffers

March 5, 2018 — “You should be ashamed.” That message flies in every direction when the subject is weight and health and obesity. Shame is a potent tool, but it’s a sloppy one. And for health, it’s never helpful. Truth suffers when people start thinking they have an exclusive claim on the truth. And on weight, health, and obesity, one […]

When Lifesaving Medical Care is “Cosmetic”

February 20, 2018 — Shawn Alvarado is not healthy and he knows it. He has a sedentary job, working as a dispatcher for a moving company. Now 53 years old, he’s been gaining weight ever since he was a teen. He weighs almost 500 pounds. He has heart disease, diabetes, and sleep apnea. Without a gastric bypass, his cardiologist […]

Weight Loss Surgery: The False Stigma of an Easy Way Out

February 13, 2018 — An unfounded stigma surrounds weight loss surgery. This prejudice has its primary roots in forgivable ignorance about the reality of a body’s resistance to weight loss. A widespread view is that obesity is a chosen way of life, not an actual disease. The Pattern of a Disease The World Obesity Federation recently published a statement […]

Fat Acceptance Advocates Are Unhappy with Weight Watchers

February 11, 2018 — Social media gives power to intense emotions. And if you want to sample intense emotions, tune into a conversation between fat acceptance advocates and Weight Watchers. Well, calling it a conversation is probably inaccurate. It’s more of a one-sided torrent of anger. And it’s all about outreach to teens. Sparked by a Press Release Last […]

Three Hurdles for Actually Dealing with Obesity

February 10, 2018 — We’re having a tough time dealing with obesity. Progress is uneven. Prevalence is still rising. The National Academies Roundtable on Obesity Solutions spent a good chunk of this week talking it over. At the end of two days, Chairman Bill Purcell offered a tidy framework for thinking about three hurdles for actually dealing with the […]

Don’t Panic, Obesity Is No Longer an Epidemic

February 2, 2018 — Well, actually now it’s officially a pandemic. Nevertheless, it’s pretty clear that the language of obesity panic is totally unhelpful. Unfortunately, what it does accomplish is the promotion of bias and discrimination. The Language of Moral Panic More than a decade ago, Paul Campos published a commentary that described the response to obesity as a […]

Obesity, Health, and Respect for Human Diversity

January 29, 2018 — Respect for human diversity is a slippery goal. You might assume that public health policies advance that goal. But a new analysis from Ximena Ramos Salas and colleagues suggests that the opposite is true. Policies aimed at obesity can contribute to bias against people living with it. Five Pervasive Themes Ramos Salas found five problem […]

How to Promote Self-Deception About Health and Obesity

January 18, 2018 — Perhaps you noticed. This week, everyone is interested in the president’s BMI. Following a press briefing, Twitter became obsessed with the subject. But the only good we can find in this fuss is an object lesson on how stigma promotes self-deception about health and obesity. White House doctor Ronny Jackson told the press that our […]