I am atheist, extremely liberal, vegetarian, queer, feminist, tree-hugging & I love animals. I'm a nerd who loves scifi, fantasy, linguistics, math & science. And I'm into rock, indie, alternative, female vocalists, emo and pop-punk music.
I was born in ‘85. Interesting to see just how fast things have changed.
Okay, cool graphic. But can we stop the bullshit discussions about how this is because people are too lazy to take care of their bodies? Can we finally address the ACTUAL root causes of this, like poverty (causing people to have no money for fresh foods, and NO TIME to prepare it because working three jobs is necessary just to pay the rent), food deserts (no access to healthy food), and lack of education (no, not that people think a Big Mac is healthy, but that they literally do not know how to cook and store food, because that’s something parents often teach and they have to time to do so - see above)?
Can we talk about how processed food is considerably cheaper and INFINITELY more convenient for working people than fresh food? Can we talk about how most agricultural subsidies underwrite the cost of processed food? Can we talk about the way physical education is being cut from schools all over the countries, and many after-school sports are making the transition from free for all to pay-to-play? Can we talk about how free of charge safe places for children (and adults) to exercise are more and more scarce, especially in urban areas?
No, of course not. Because then we’d have to stop shaming people for their bodies - fuck off, Atlantic.
^^ I was waiting for good commentary on this before I reblogged. Thank you.
The interesting thing about ~the obesity epidemic~ too is if you pay attention to who sponsors the research and who benefits the most from the propagation of the idea that fat=unhealthy: the weight loss industry.
A great book on this is J. Eric Oliver’s Fat Politics: The Real Story Behind America’s Obesity Epidemic (2006), which I highly recommend. Here’s a quick excerpt, although reading the book itself gives a much fuller picture of how extensive this issue really is.
“The U.S. government’s proclamation of what BMI level was overweight or obese was based…on a subjective and arbitrary call on the part of just a few researchers…. To understand this point, it is important to go back to the 1995 WHO report that helped establish the idea that a person is overweight with a BMI of 25…. Most of it was drafted and written under the auspices of the International Obesity Task Force (IOTF)…. [which] is primarily funded by Hoffman-LaRoche (the maker of the weight-loss drug Xenical) and Abbott Laboratories (the maker of the weight-loss drug Meridia)…. The primary mission of the IOTF is to lobby governments and advance particular scientific agendas that coincide with the pharmaceutical industry’s goals…. Few realize that the effort to establish a worldwide standard for what is overweight and obese was sponsored primarily by a company that makes a weight-loss pill.” (p. 28-29)
This book also addresses commonly cited ‘facts’ about obesity — e.g. that it kills 400,000 Americans a year or that it costs the U.S. $100 billion a year. Both of these estimates are based on highly flawed research and sweeping assumptions.
See also Paul Campos’s The Obesity Myth: Why America’s Obsession with Weight is Hazardous (2004) and Gina Kolata’s Rethinking Thin: The New Science of Weight Loss—and the Myths and Realities of Dieting (2007), both of which go over a lot of the commonly cited studies and their statistical and methodological flaws, detail the dangers of weight cycling, discuss the origins, anachronism, and misapplication of BMI, and review the political and financial motivations behind ‘the obesity epidemic’ rhetoric.
i understand that people that are very overweight are beautiful but it’s not about people accepting that they are beautiful it’s that it’s plain unhealthy, yes someone just barely overweight can be as healthy as someone whos at a healthy range but your body wasnt made to carry around excessive weight…im not badhing overweight people but they need to understand its about health and life worth
But the most important part is: Not your body? Not your business. Shame doesn’t help anyone. Stigma doesn’t help anyone. Vague future health threats don’t help anyone.
But if the only places that you hear that fat is always unhealthy are from mass media, which helps the diet industry make $40 BILLION (or more) profit per year, or from the medical community which is more interested in making money off prescribing pills and bariatric surgery, you might want to consider that you’ve been fooled. Also keep in mind that the government and medical community immediately throws out/stops funding any studies that prove that fat is not unhealthy.
The USTA Told This Stellar Junior Player She Was Too Fat For The U.S. Open
Taylor Townsend is a 16-year-old tennis phenom. She’s the No. 1 ranked girls junior and won the Australian Open juniors tournament earlier this year.
But according to The Wall Street Journal, the USTA is not impressed. Townsend is a product of the USTA’s relatively new tennis-development program and they declined to pay her way to the U.S. Open because she was … too big. So her mother ponied up the expenses instead and here she is, ripping her way through the U.S. Open juniors tournament.
But unbeknownst to everyone outside her inner circle, the USTA wasn’t happy to see Townsend in New York. Her coaches declined to pay her travel expenses to attend the Open and told her this summer that they wouldn’t finance any tournament appearances until she makes sufficient progress in one area: slimming down and getting into better shape.
“Our concern is her long-term health, number one, and her long-term development as a player,” said Patrick McEnroe, the general manager of the USTA’s player development program. “We have one goal in mind: For her to be playing in [Arthur Ashe Stadium] in the main draw and competing for major titles when it’s time. That’s how we make every decision, based on that.”
McEnroe wants to send a big and loud message—even the No. 1 player doesn’t get to skate by our guidelines—but it’s becomes tricker when you realize on both the men’s and women’s side the pipeline remains dry for young American talent. So now you have McEnroe and the rest of the USTA rooting against a player because the farther she goes, the bigger a public-relations disaster this becomes. And it’s made even worse because even if the USTA wants to talk about fitness, the message becomes: We are publicly judging your body.
A quick glance around the U.S. Open reveals a fair number of less-chiseled players, such as Marion Bartoli and Stanislas Wawrinka, who both reached the tournament’s second week.
On the women’s side, former U.S. star Lindsay Davenport became No. 1 while ranking among the largest players on the women’s tour at 6-foot-2 and about 175 pounds. And in 2007, Serena Williams won the Australian Open singles title while being in what many experts consider the worst shape of her career.
“You have to be fit underneath, I don’t think you necessarily have to look ripped,” said former No. 1 Mats Wilander. “Smart players can get away with being a little tired.”