Friday, 28 August 2020

Britain’s Plan To Fight COVID-19 With Fatphobia Is Terrible

Britain has launched a program called “Better Health” that is claiming that it will improve health by perpetuating fatphobia and convincing people to engage in so-called health interventions that almost never work.

It utilizes the “eat less, move more” theory that has been proven not to work since at least 1999. and that even Canadian Health Professionals who sell weight loss have admitted doesn’t work. But encouraging people to attempt intentional weight loss despite the fact that there isn’t a single study where more than a tiny fraction of people succeed at significant long-term weight loss is, sadly, nothing new.

Tying it to the equally questionable idea that fat people are at a higher risk for COVID-19/more severe symptoms because of their body size (and not because of the unequal treatment we receive in society, and the very medical weight stigma at the root of this program) is new, and terrible.

Quick history lesson – during the H1N1 outbreak, fat people had poorer health outcomes (and everyone jumped on the bandwagon to figure out exactly what about fat bodies was the cause.) It turns out the actual issue was that fat people were systematically treated later with antiviral medication than thin people. Per a study on the subject “After adjustment for early antiviral treatment, relationship between ob*sity and poor outcomes disappeared.” More about the issues with the claim that being fat increases COVID-19 risk/severity can be found here and here.

Besides which, we don’t know that making larger people (temporarily) a bit smaller will do anything to change their COVID-19 risk, nor do we know that if encouraging people to restrict food and exercise to create a situation where their body has to consume itself to survive could actually make things worse. The idea that if we make fat people look more like thin people then their health outcomes will be the same is not remotely scientifically sound.

They are making the incredibly dubious claim (with absolutely no evidence) that if every person who is considered fat loses 5.5 pounds (an amount many menstruating people gain and lose each month, and that I could personally lose right now with a haircut and a loofah) it will save the NHS $135M in five years.

In fact, the only arguably “smart” (though still terrible) thing they did is make this only a 12-week program. Almost anyone can lose a little weight short term. Then, like almost every study on weight loss, they’ll stop tracking results before the vast majority gain it all back (with many gaining back more than they lost) and claim success, blaming the *almost everyone* who gains the weight back.

This will do an incredibly amount of harm in the following ways:

First, any time there is a national campaign against fat people, it increases the stigma that fat people deal with. Studies have shown that this stigma is correlated to many of the same health conditions to which being fat is correlated. Making people hate their bodies does not improve health outcomes.

When programs like this correlate weight loss with health it sets people up to give up on supporting their health when they, almost inevitably, fail to maintain weight loss. Health, by any definition, isn’t an obligation, barometer of worthiness, or entirely within our control, but setting us up to believe the lie that the only way to pursue health is through weight loss, and then fail (often repeatedly) at weight loss does not improve health outcomes.

Many of the things that people are claiming may cause fat bodies to be at higher COVID-19 risk are actually correlated with weight cycling (yo-yo diet) which is by far the most likely outcome of multiple weight loss attempts, which Britain’s program will actually increase.

Consider weight cycling as an example. Attempts to lose weight typically result in weight cycling, and such attempts are more common among obese individuals [62]. Weight cycling results in increased inflammation, which in turn is known to increase risk for many ob*sity-associated diseases [63]. Other potential mechanisms by which weight cycling contributes to morbidity include hypertension, insulin resistance and dyslipidemia [64]. Research also indicates that weight fluctuation is associated with poorer cardiovascular outcomes and increased mortality risk [6468]. Weight cycling can account for all of the excess mortality associated with ob*sity in both the Framingham Heart Study [69] and the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) [70]. It may be, therefore, that the association between weight and health risk can be better attributed to weight cycling than adiposity itself [63].

In addition to the calorie counting push being destined for failure based on all the research that exists, this kind of campaign does real harm to people who may develop, are living with, or are recovered from eating disorders.

The government is insisting on putting calorie counts on menus which has been found to do nothing to change food choices but increases the chances of triggering an eating disorder. (Also incredibly triggering is a massive media campaign that focuses on the idea that thin(ner) is better.)

Perhaps most frustrating of all, it is entirely possible to create public health interventions without weight stigma, thus actually increasing the upside while eliminating the downside for people of all sizes. We should hold our leaders to this standard and refuse to participate in these farces that claim to be about wellness but are deeply, inextricably linked to fatphobia.

Did you find this helpful? If you appreciate the work that I do, you can support my ability to do more of it with a one-time tip or by becoming a member. (Members get special deals on fat-positive stuff, a monthly e-mail keeping them up to date on the work their membership supports, and the ability to ask me questions that I answer in a members-only monthly Q&A Video!)

UPCOMING ONLINE WORKSHOP:
Getting Jiggly With It! Movement In A Fat Body

Movement/fitness/exercise by any definition is never an obligation or barometer of worthiness. But for fat people who want to move our bodies – whether it’s because we enjoy it, or because of the benefit(s) we get from it (even if we don’t enjoy it,) whatever our reasons a fatphobic culture can create barriers, misinformation, and other difficulties for us. In this workshop we’ll explore tips, tricks, and information to help us move our bodies for our own reasons. (This workshop can also be helpful to fitness pros who want to create a fat-positive practice!)

Details and Registration: https://danceswithfat.org/monthly-online-workshops/
*This workshop is free for DancesWithFat members

Like this blog?  Here’s more stuff you might like:

Wellness for All Bodies Program:A simple, step-by-step, super efficient guide to setting and reaching your health goals from a weight-neutral perspective.  This program can be used by individuals, or by groups, including as a workplace wellness program!

Price: $25.00 ($10 for DancesWithFat members – register on the member page)

Non-members Click here for all the details and to register!
Body Love Obstacle Course

This e-course that includes coaching videos, a study guide, and an ebook with the tools you need to create a rock-solid relationship with your body. Our relationships with our bodies don’t happen in a vacuum, so just learning to see our beauty isn’t going to cut it. The world throws obstacles in our way – obstacles that aren’t our fault, but become our problem. Over the course of this program, Ragen Chastain, Jeanette DePatie, and six incredible guest coaches will teach you practical, realistic, proven strategies to go above, around, and through the obstacles that the world puts in front of you when it comes to living an amazing life in the body you have now.
Price: $99.00 Click here to register
($79.00 for DancesWithFat members – register on the member page)

Love It! 234 Inspirations And Activities to Help You Love Your Body
This is filled with thoughtful advice from the authors Jeanette DePatie, Ragen Chastain, and Pia Sciavo-Campo as well as dozens of other notable names from the body love movement, the book is lovingly illustrated with diverse drawings from size-positive artist Toni Tails.
Price: $9.99 softcover, $7.99 Kindle, ($6.95 + free shipping for DancesWithFat Members)

Book Me!  I’d love to speak to your organization (and I can do it remotely!) You can get more information here or just e-mail me at ragen at danceswithfat dot org!



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Saturday, 22 August 2020

THIS FAT OLD LADY’S FAT FRIDAY – IS THAT WHY I DO THAT?

THIS FAT OLD LADY’S FAT FRIDAY – IS THAT WHY I DO THAT?



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Friday, 21 August 2020

Converse Makes a Couple Pieces In Slightly Bigger Sizes, Then Lies About it

CONVERSE SHAPES FOR EVERY BODY the ad proclaims. It continues “What if clothing was free from gender? If you define the clothes, the clothes don’t define you. A new type of clothing designed for every body.”

What if indeed? I am absolutely in favor of clothing companies making size and gender inclusive clothing. But this…isn’t that.

First of all, the largest size is XXL. So apparently Converse thinks I and everyone else over an XXL does not exist? Or that we are non-corporeal somehow?

But lets talk about the clothes. Their gendered clothes come in a variety of colors, patterns, and shapes. In this “genderless” collection you can get clothes in any color you want, as long as it’s black, white, or a color they call “field surplus” (which I can best describe as drabbest green,) and basically shapeless. I also notice that a lot of their straight-sized, gendered options sport a huge logo on them, but in order to tell that these clothes are Converse one would have to get “back the fuck up” close to wearer to read the tiny tag. Normally I would never complain about lack of a company’s self-promotion on their clothing, but in this case it makes me wonder if Converse isn’t proud to call these clothes their own.

No offense to people who like these clothes, which of course is totally valid, but the first thing they made me think of was the punishment clothes they made us wear in school if we forgot our PE clothes.

Also, as someone with cis-privilege I definitely don’t mean to speak for Trans and Non-Binary people, but my understanding is that creating genderless clothing isn’t about creating a few pieces without much color or shape, it’s about taking the gender labels off, making all the clothes in all the sizes and then of course dismantling the cis-sexism and transphobia in the world so that all people can dress in all the colors and shapes, not none of them.

Then we’ve got the “all sizes” lie. The idea that these clothes are for “all sizes” is 100% pure bullshit. Besides the fact that the sizing is absolutely bonkers (in what world is a single size equivalent to cis-men’s M-2X and cis-women’s XL-XXL?) it’s simply a lie, which I already covered in this video:

We need actual size and gender inclusive clothes (looking at you SmartGlamour!) not this lip service nonsense that creates even more exclusion by getting our hopes up and then dropping them off a cliff.

Did you find this helpful? If you appreciate the work that I do, you can support my ability to do more of it with a one-time tip or by becoming a member. (Members get special deals on fat-positive stuff, a monthly e-mail keeping them up to date on the work their membership supports, and the ability to ask me questions that I answer in a members-only monthly Q&A Video!)

UPCOMING ONLINE WORKSHOP:
Getting Jiggly With It! Movement In A Fat Body

Movement/fitness/exercise by any definition is never an obligation or barometer of worthiness. But for fat people who want to move our bodies – whether it’s because we enjoy it, or because of the benefit(s) we get from it (even if we don’t enjoy it,) whatever our reasons a fatphobic culture can create barriers, misinformation, and other difficulties for us. In this workshop we’ll explore tips, tricks, and information to help us move our bodies for our own reasons. (This workshop can also be helpful to fitness pros who want to create a fat-positive practice!)

Details and Registration: https://danceswithfat.org/monthly-online-workshops/
*This workshop is free for DancesWithFat members

Like this blog?  Here’s more stuff you might like:

Wellness for All Bodies Program:A simple, step-by-step, super efficient guide to setting and reaching your health goals from a weight-neutral perspective.  This program can be used by individuals, or by groups, including as a workplace wellness program!

Price: $25.00 ($10 for DancesWithFat members – register on the member page)

Non-members Click here for all the details and to register!
Body Love Obstacle Course

This e-course that includes coaching videos, a study guide, and an ebook with the tools you need to create a rock-solid relationship with your body. Our relationships with our bodies don’t happen in a vacuum, so just learning to see our beauty isn’t going to cut it. The world throws obstacles in our way – obstacles that aren’t our fault, but become our problem. Over the course of this program, Ragen Chastain, Jeanette DePatie, and six incredible guest coaches will teach you practical, realistic, proven strategies to go above, around, and through the obstacles that the world puts in front of you when it comes to living an amazing life in the body you have now.
Price: $99.00 Click here to register
($79.00 for DancesWithFat members – register on the member page)

Love It! 234 Inspirations And Activities to Help You Love Your Body
This is filled with thoughtful advice from the authors Jeanette DePatie, Ragen Chastain, and Pia Sciavo-Campo as well as dozens of other notable names from the body love movement, the book is lovingly illustrated with diverse drawings from size-positive artist Toni Tails.
Price: $9.99 softcover, $7.99 Kindle, ($6.95 + free shipping for DancesWithFat Members)

Book Me!  I’d love to speak to your organization (and I can do it remotely!) You can get more information here or just e-mail me at ragen at danceswithfat dot org!




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Wednesday, 19 August 2020

Dietitians Urge Professional Organization Not To Accept Fatphobic Guidelines

I recently wrote about the ridiculous and fatphobic guidelines put forward by Canadian Health Professionals in a desperate bid to save the income they make from “weight loss” despite the fact that they completely fail at it.

Now a group of dietitians has started a petition asking their professional association, Dietitians of Canada, not to accept these guidelines.

They write, in part,

Studies need to account for weight discrimination rather than weight alone. When studies accounted for weight discrimination, the relationship between high BMI and negative outcomes became negligible. And yet, in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, many experts cited obesity as a risk factor for poorer outcomes…

We can improve outcomes for people living in larger bodies if health care providers provide the same degree of care when diagnosing, testing and treating medical conditions, similarly to thin patients. 

If Dietitians of Canada (DC) is committed to have diversity and inclusion shape the future of the association, DC would critically evaluate the current evidence that not only highlights the harm caused by weight-normative approaches, but also the doublethink made by OC.

Action Items:

1. DC should not endorse the o**sity guidelines by OC because many RDs oppose them. 

2. DC would commit to learning from grassroot organizations (eg. Association for Size Diversity and Health and National Association to Advance Fat Acceptance) that have been advocating for the wellbeing of people living in larger bodies for many years.

Additional notes:

O**sity is used throughout the article deliberately to recognize how hurtful and stigmatizing the term is to people living in larger bodies. Many grassroot organizations have spoken out against the labeling of o**sity as a disease.

Please consider signing and sharing the petition:
https://www.change.org/p/dietitians-of-canada-should-not-endorse-the-clinical-practice-guidelines-by-obesity-canada

Did you find this helpful? If you appreciate the work that I do, you can support my ability to do more of it with a one-time tip or by becoming a member. (Members get special deals on fat-positive stuff, a monthly e-mail keeping them up to date on the work their membership supports, and the ability to ask me questions that I answer in a members-only monthly Q&A Video!)

UPCOMING ONLINE WORKSHOP:
Dealing With Fatphobia At The Doctor’s Office

We’ll discuss tips, tricks, and techniques for getting evidence-based, weight-neutral (and sometimes even fat-positive!) care from doctors and other healthcare practitioners, even in a fatphobic healthcare system. There will be lots of time for Q&A, a recording with captions will be provided, and there is a pay-what-you-can option.

Details and Registration: https://danceswithfat.org/monthly-online-workshops/
*This workshop is free for DancesWithFat members

Like this blog?  Here’s more stuff you might like:

Wellness for All Bodies Program:A simple, step-by-step, super efficient guide to setting and reaching your health goals from a weight-neutral perspective.  This program can be used by individuals, or by groups, including as a workplace wellness program!

Price: $25.00 ($10 for DancesWithFat members – register on the member page)

Non-members Click here for all the details and to register!
Body Love Obstacle Course

This e-course that includes coaching videos, a study guide, and an ebook with the tools you need to create a rock-solid relationship with your body. Our relationships with our bodies don’t happen in a vacuum, so just learning to see our beauty isn’t going to cut it. The world throws obstacles in our way – obstacles that aren’t our fault, but become our problem. Over the course of this program, Ragen Chastain, Jeanette DePatie, and six incredible guest coaches will teach you practical, realistic, proven strategies to go above, around, and through the obstacles that the world puts in front of you when it comes to living an amazing life in the body you have now.
Price: $99.00 Click here to register
($79.00 for DancesWithFat members – register on the member page)

Love It! 234 Inspirations And Activities to Help You Love Your Body
This is filled with thoughtful advice from the authors Jeanette DePatie, Ragen Chastain, and Pia Sciavo-Campo as well as dozens of other notable names from the body love movement, the book is lovingly illustrated with diverse drawings from size-positive artist Toni Tails.
Price: $9.99 softcover, $7.99 Kindle, ($6.95 + free shipping for DancesWithFat Members)

Book Me!  I’d love to speak to your organization (and I can do it remotely!) You can get more information here or just e-mail me at ragen at danceswithfat dot org!



via Dances With Fat https://ift.tt/32bUmRI

Tuesday, 18 August 2020

Fatphobia in Eating Disorders Treatment

Recently, The Renfrew Center drew fatphobia in eating disorders treatment into sharp relief with a horribly fatphobic article in their summer newsletter. Sadly, the article was only one example of the fatphobia that exist within eating disorders treatment centers.

In my latest piece for The Mighty I explore the issues with the Renfrew article and three other ways that fatphobia surfaces in eating disorders treatment programs.

You can read the full piece here!

Did you find this helpful? If you appreciate the work that I do, you can support my ability to do more of it with a one-time tip or by becoming a member. (Members get special deals on fat-positive stuff, a monthly e-mail keeping them up to date on the work their membership supports, and the ability to ask me questions that I answer in a members-only monthly Q&A Video!)

UPCOMING ONLINE WORKSHOP:
Dealing With Fatphobia At The Doctor’s Office

We’ll discuss tips, tricks, and techniques for getting evidence-based, weight-neutral (and sometimes even fat-positive!) care from doctors and other healthcare practitioners, even in a fatphobic healthcare system. There will be lots of time for Q&A, a recording with captions will be provided, and there is a pay-what-you-can option.

Details and Registration: https://danceswithfat.org/monthly-online-workshops/
*This workshop is free for DancesWithFat members

Like this blog?  Here’s more stuff you might like:

Wellness for All Bodies Program:A simple, step-by-step, super efficient guide to setting and reaching your health goals from a weight-neutral perspective.  This program can be used by individuals, or by groups, including as a workplace wellness program!

Price: $25.00 ($10 for DancesWithFat members – register on the member page)

Non-members Click here for all the details and to register!
Body Love Obstacle Course

This e-course that includes coaching videos, a study guide, and an ebook with the tools you need to create a rock-solid relationship with your body. Our relationships with our bodies don’t happen in a vacuum, so just learning to see our beauty isn’t going to cut it. The world throws obstacles in our way – obstacles that aren’t our fault, but become our problem. Over the course of this program, Ragen Chastain, Jeanette DePatie, and six incredible guest coaches will teach you practical, realistic, proven strategies to go above, around, and through the obstacles that the world puts in front of you when it comes to living an amazing life in the body you have now.
Price: $99.00 Click here to register
($79.00 for DancesWithFat members – register on the member page)

Love It! 234 Inspirations And Activities to Help You Love Your Body
This is filled with thoughtful advice from the authors Jeanette DePatie, Ragen Chastain, and Pia Sciavo-Campo as well as dozens of other notable names from the body love movement, the book is lovingly illustrated with diverse drawings from size-positive artist Toni Tails.
Price: $9.99 softcover, $7.99 Kindle, ($6.95 + free shipping for DancesWithFat Members)

Book Me!  I’d love to speak to your organization (and I can do it remotely!) You can get more information here or just e-mail me at ragen at danceswithfat dot org!



via Dances With Fat https://ift.tt/3iSi5wU

Thursday, 13 August 2020

Fatphobes in Size Acceptance Clothing

As activists and educators make progress in the fight against fatphobia and diet culture, more people and companies who profit from them are pivoting. Examples that come to mind are Weight Watchers, the OAC, and Canadian doctors. Then there are all those people trying to peddle intutive eating and HAES for weightloss which is completely antithetical.

In all of these examples, these organizations are tripping all over themselves to say that they are against stigmatizing and shaming fat people. And obviously, fat people should not be stigmatized or shamed.

But…all three of these groups also sell weight loss (despite the fact that there isn’t a single study were more than a tiny fraction of people succeed at significant long term weight loss.) While they claim, again with extremely questionable evidence, that they are selling weight loss for health, they also often use messaging that shows that they are selling weight loss interventions, including interventions that risk our lives and quality of life, as a solution to fatphobia (with testimonials about how great it is to be able to shop in straight-sized stores, ride roller coasters etc.)

While we often celebrate this as progress, there are also three very serious issues with it.

First, they are still selling the idea that fat people should change themselves in order to make our bullies happy. The equivalent of recommending that we give a bully our lunch money and hope he stops beating us up, except instead of our lunch money it’s the majority of our stomach and other parts of our digestive system that we’re giving up.

Second, they create confusion by intentionally misrepresenting concepts like Intuitive Eating, Health at Every Size, Body Positivity, Size Acceptance and Fat Activism. Now, this is a different kind of confusion that people like Jillian Michaels create when they lie about the concepts to fit their narrative, but it’s still harmful and it dilutes the concepts and hampers the fight for social justice.

Finally, and perhaps the most harmful thing is that they make their advocates into fatphobes in HAES clothing, smiling at us and saying what basically amounts to “I don’t want to stigmatize you, but I think the world would be better if nobody like you existed and so I’m actively trying to eradicate people who look like you from the Earth.” That’s not possible, but organizations like these put fortunes of money into convincing people that it is, even getting fat people who are still deep into internalized fatphobia to shill for them.

As someone who is both queer and fat, this sounds a lot to me like “I don’t think queer people should be stigmatized, I just think that they should all undergo “conversion therapy” for their own good.

They are conditioning us to accept a world were lipservice is given to not stigmatizing us, while billions of dollars are spent to make sure none of us exist.

It is literally impossible to not stigmatize fat bodies while promoting a platform that insists that being thin(ner) is better.

You can’t have a platform of not stigmatizing fat people while still actively preaching that existing fat people should be turned thin, and future fat people should be prevented from ever existing.

The only way to be truly non-stigmatizing of fat people is to stop trying to eradicate us and prevent us from existing. Embracing a diversity of body sizes, creating spaces that accommodate and affirm fat bodies, weight-neutral healthcare…these are anti-stigma actions. Co-opting the language of Size Acceptance in order to sell diets is not.

Did you find this helpful? If you appreciate the work that I do, you can support my ability to do more of it with a one-time tip or by becoming a member. (Members get special deals on fat-positive stuff, a monthly e-mail keeping them up to date on the work their membership supports, and the ability to ask me questions that I answer in a members-only monthly Q&A Video!)

UPCOMING ONLINE WORKSHOP:
Dealing With Fatphobia At The Doctor’s Office

We’ll discuss tips, tricks, and techniques for getting evidence-based, weight-neutral (and sometimes even fat-positive!) care from doctors and other healthcare practitioners, even in a fatphobic healthcare system. There will be lots of time for Q&A, a recording with captions will be provided, and there is a pay-what-you-can option.

Details and Registration: https://danceswithfat.org/monthly-online-workshops/
*This workshop is free for DancesWithFat members

Like this blog?  Here’s more stuff you might like:

Wellness for All Bodies Program:A simple, step-by-step, super efficient guide to setting and reaching your health goals from a weight-neutral perspective.  This program can be used by individuals, or by groups, including as a workplace wellness program!

Price: $25.00 ($10 for DancesWithFat members – register on the member page)

Non-members Click here for all the details and to register!
Body Love Obstacle Course

This e-course that includes coaching videos, a study guide, and an ebook with the tools you need to create a rock-solid relationship with your body. Our relationships with our bodies don’t happen in a vacuum, so just learning to see our beauty isn’t going to cut it. The world throws obstacles in our way – obstacles that aren’t our fault, but become our problem. Over the course of this program, Ragen Chastain, Jeanette DePatie, and six incredible guest coaches will teach you practical, realistic, proven strategies to go above, around, and through the obstacles that the world puts in front of you when it comes to living an amazing life in the body you have now.
Price: $99.00 Click here to register
($79.00 for DancesWithFat members – register on the member page)

Love It! 234 Inspirations And Activities to Help You Love Your Body
This is filled with thoughtful advice from the authors Jeanette DePatie, Ragen Chastain, and Pia Sciavo-Campo as well as dozens of other notable names from the body love movement, the book is lovingly illustrated with diverse drawings from size-positive artist Toni Tails.
Price: $9.99 softcover, $7.99 Kindle, ($6.95 + free shipping for DancesWithFat Members)

Book Me!  I’d love to speak to your organization (and I can do it remotely!) You can get more information here or just e-mail me at ragen at danceswithfat dot org!



via Dances With Fat https://ift.tt/3aoVo0n

No, Schools Should Not Perform COVID Weigh-Ins

LIFEIS~1Jeremy Vine, host of the aptly named British Talk Show, “Jeremy Vine,” recently tweeted:

“Should schools weigh pupils to make sure they shift the pounds they’ve put on during the lockdown?

Health experts want two weigh-ins in September and then in the spring to keep kids on track. But could this just create a generation of calorie counters? #JeremyVine”

There was almost no support for the idea among the replies, which I think shows good progress in terms of the way that we talk about children’s weight and health (which are two separate things). But the fact that it was a topic in the first place indicates that the work is not yet done.

In my latest piece for The Mighty I wrote about all the reasons why this is a completely terrible idea:

You Can Read the full piece here

Did you find this helpful? If you appreciate the work that I do, you can support my ability to do more of it with a one-time tip or by becoming a member. (Members get special deals on fat-positive stuff, a monthly e-mail keeping them up to date on the work their membership supports, and the ability to ask me questions that I answer in a members-only monthly Q&A Video!)

UPCOMING ONLINE WORKSHOP:
Dealing With Fatphobia At The Doctor’s Office

We’ll discuss tips, tricks, and techniques for getting evidence-based, weight-neutral (and sometimes even fat-positive!) care from doctors and other healthcare practioners, even in a fatphobic healthcare system. There will be lots of time for Q&A, a recording will be provided, and there is a pay-what-you-can option.

Details and Registration: https://danceswithfat.org/monthly-online-workshops/
*This workshop is free for DancesWithFat members

Like this blog?  Here’s more stuff you might like:

Wellness for All Bodies Program:A simple, step-by-step, super efficient guide to setting and reaching your health goals from a weight-neutral perspective.  This program can be used by individuals, or by groups, including as a workplace wellness program!

Price: $25.00 ($10 for DancesWithFat members – register on the member page)

Non-members Click here for all the details and to register!


Body Love Obstacle Course

This e-course that includes coaching videos, a study guide, and an ebook with the tools you need to create a rock-solid relationship with your body. Our relationships with our bodies don’t happen in a vacuum, so just learning to see our beauty isn’t going to cut it. The world throws obstacles in our way – obstacles that aren’t our fault, but become our problem. Over the course of this program, Ragen Chastain, Jeanette DePatie, and six incredible guest coaches will teach you practical, realistic, proven strategies to go above, around, and through the obstacles that the world puts in front of you when it comes to living an amazing life in the body you have now.
Price: $99.00 Click here to register
($79.00 for DancesWithFat members – register on the member page)

Love It! 234 Inspirations And Activities to Help You Love Your Body
This is filled with thoughtful advice from the authors Jeanette DePatie, Ragen Chastain, and Pia Sciavo-Campo as well as dozens of other notable names from the body love movement, the book is lovingly illustrated with diverse drawings from size-positive artist Toni Tails.
Price: $9.99 softcover, $7.99 Kindle, ($6.95 + free shipping for DancesWithFat Members)

Book Me!  I’d love to speak to your organization (and I can do it remotely!) You can get more information here or just e-mail me at ragen at danceswithfat dot org!



via Dances With Fat https://ift.tt/3iB0ucx

Monday, 10 August 2020

Tuna, Rubber

That awkward moment where a song comes on, that you maybe haven’t heard in “ages”, and a vivid memory arrives suddenly and you’re struck with how awful that was and how strong you were to persevere. Fuck! The memory, long forgotten, of how my abuser would insist on “clearing” or approving of what music I listened to. He hated Bush so I blasted “sixteen Stone” a lot. And a fuck ton of L7, specifically their song, “Slide”. I think he feared my getting boosted up by strong female messaging. Not that he’d have said as much. Little did he know how much Tori Amos “Boys for Pele” album would give me so much food for my broken and battered soul then. This morning the song, “Marianne” came on, I keep music on throughout the day when I’m working to avoid other distractions. I usually have it so that my Pandora stations are shuffled and when the song begins, the memory of his grabbing my discman and insisting on listening to it as I grinned from ear to ear. I could see his face change from insistence, anger, confusion, and then when he handed it back to me and said it was “fine” and that he liked “That song about tuna rubber” and I realized that he had only listened to 5-10 seconds of the beginning of each song and how little that could mean or convey. Internally I laughed my ass off. Externally I was the ever grateful actress for him. 


We lived in a shared house with his best friend and that friend’s grandma. Weirder still is that my very first boyfriend (and kiss, tbh) rented the garage in back as well. There was a constant tension of how much the grandma would allow in the house, and how much she actually knew of what was going on. Drugs aplenty, though his friend was strictly an alcoholic and wouldn’t touch anything else. It was a delicate dance for me to keep peace between the friend and grandma, the grandma and me, my abuser’s ever changing demands and cruelty, and keeping the house in semi order as I was the only one in the house with the grandma half the time. I cooked, I cleaned, I applied for jobs everywhere I could when I could get out of the house. I honestly don’t know how long I lived in that house, a year or two, I am only starting to retrieve some of those memories, and none intentionally.


I remember my insomnia has reached its absolute worst and I would walk to the 7-11 about a half mile from the house for nachos. What else does one buy at 3 am? Ha-ha! I was 18, but my every moment was tracked and accounted for by my abuser. What I wore, what I ate, what I listened to was only part of it. He insisted on a rundown of everything spoken between myself and the grandma, what I did for her, what I did for the house, if the ex-bf in the garage said anything to anyone at all when he came to use the shower. To say this was an exhausting existence is putting it mildly. He would also lock me in the back bedroom for hours if anything wasn’t to his liking. It was around this time I got into Anne Rice books. I needed to pass the time and had seen the movie Interview with a Vampire the previous year. I had no recollection at the time that my bio mother was super into her books as well, as I’d had no contact in years and hadn’t paid much attention as a child. 


It was at this time that my abuser somehow met a woman who helped him with his various schemes. Drugs sure, he sold those for ages but always weed or pills and in such small quantities that no one would notice. But when he met Olga it got bigger and broader and I don’t know what else was involved, honestly nothing would surprise me. He once insisted I meet her, much to my revulsion, and forced me to get super dressed up to meet her for dinner at The Pasta Market. I laugh now because that place was such a dump by today’s standards, but considered “fancy” to me and many others back then. I don’t remember much except her face, how pleasant she seemed, and the horrific pressure and stress he put on me throughout that evening. I figured he was fucking her, but after meeting her I wasn’t so sure. Maybe they pimped other women out, at least I suspected as much for a brief period. I know she helped him sell stolen jewelry and goods. 


That house. Ugh! I had visited that house once previously, not sure if this was before I met my abuser. Time is fuzzy, but it’s possible he left me there while he went out drinking with his buddy. I was hanging out with some stoner friends I knew in high school there, smoking weed, listening to 60’s music (we were hippies, sort of) and they were drinking Goldschl├Ąger (I refused to drink at that time) and we all marveled at the gold flakes in the bottle as it swirled around. Okay they may have been on harder drugs, but I remember laughing and having a great time. One of those guys would later save my life by reading the situation as bad and offering me a place to live 20 miles away. I do not believe that I would have lived much longer had he not done that on my 19th birthday. I left the very next day. I never saw that dreadful house, his friend, or the grandma ever again. Some of you may think that’s awful to leave the old woman alone in that house with two drunken monsters, but I can assure you that she a) did not live in that house much longer, b) likely knew some of what was going on and didn’t care, and c) treated me like shit along with the other two so I don’t really give a fuck about her. 


That boy that saved me though? What a beacon of light in the darkest of nights! He had come by the house to give something to the grandma, he had married and divorced her granddaughter (they had a child together), and caught me in the house without my abuser there. He simply said, “I don’t know what is going on, but I have an empty bedroom if you need somewhere to stay, you wouldn’t have to pay rent or anything, no strings attached.” and I immediately accepted and asked if the next day would work. Ha-ha! The first few months in that apartment were bliss. We just did silly and nerdy stuff and tried to find footing in the world. He, recovering from a divorce he rarely spoke of and me figuring out what life even is after giving up hope of ever having a say of my own for the last five years. We had a whipped cream fight one night after buying bogo pumpkin pies and just being super dorks. I know how that sounds, but it was all strictly platonic, at least on my part. Only once did he admit to ever having an inclination towards me and he was very intoxicated on multiple substances at the time so I never gave it much thought. 


I do wish I could have been a better friend to him later on when a mutual friend (another ex-bf, but these were all non-sexual bfs, I was 14 and younger when I dated these boys hahahah) stayed the night once and refused to leave ever after. That friend got him into harder and harder drugs and truly wrecked his life, in my opinion. At one point there were four guys and me living in that apartment. That ex-bf that used to live in that grandma’s garage? He moved into the walk-in closet in the bigger bedroom. I had my own room with a lock on the door, thank the stars. The dumbass that refused to leave and some kid whose dad would come check on him from time to time shared the living room. We were all mostly happy stoners, but that dumbass introduced meth into the equation at some point and it all went downhill from there, even getting us evicted. The level of filth was worsened by the meth introduction as well. It went from hilarious dinners where I’d make spaghetti and they’d give me a bag of weed to mix into the sauce, which led to my painting an exact likeness of a Dr. Pepper can that we all seemed very entertained by. To just barely be able to make out that there was in fact a table in there, under a mass of trash and discarded things they would use to make or smoke their meth (I was sooooo unaware of the meth, except for the worsening odor). When I caught them freebasing in the kitchen one night I had assumed it was crack and got really upset about it. I was off in my own world creating my new life and at that time wasn’t at the apartment very much at all.


Almost exactly a year after moving into that apartment I fell in love and then was so heartbroken I nearly took my own life on my 20th birthday. “I get by with a little help from my friends” is putting it mildly. Friends I had reunited with after escaping my abuser were there for me in the ways they could be and we drank Cuervo Gold to forget about the rest. We lived on Pepsi and Taco Bell, Lean Cuisine frozen dinners and Marlboro Lights. I was soon introduced to the goth scene and a club in SF called The So What. I met my best friend who later became my husband very soon after. In a year’s time I built a whole new life for myself. I can’t say that I was happy though. I mean, no one really knew what happened to me, no one asked and it was never spoken of. I hated myself, had zero self esteem, and while not exactly self harming, I drank more that year than I did for the next 20! 


When we got evicted from the apartment I moved into my grandma’s house with my family, my grandpa had passed away a couple of years previously and she had extra rooms. The internet was still new and my bff was in college in Oregon. Email was so damned exciting! I would sit in that tiny bedroom my grandpa had used as a den (and mostly still looked the part), up late into the night unable to sleep and I would do shots of cuervo with diet 7up until I didn’t want to die anymore. I would talk to people in chat rooms on Prodigy and AOL, and even made some friends that way. I remember feeling so hollow and wishing that I knew how to feel real because I always felt so invisible. To this day the smell of Cuervo makes my stomach do backflips, I cannot even consider drinking the stuff. Truthfully, once I turned 21 I didn’t want to drink anymore. I had found my life’s love and didn’t feel as though I deserved to die or live in perpetual pain anymore. I found a new family in friends that started as coworkers. It was a really good period of my life, especially once my love and I moved in together. It felt like freedom in a way I hadn’t ever felt before. I had a say, in everything! Wow! 


All these years later it’s hard to believe sometimes all that happened during the 1990’s to me. I started high school feeling like I could conquer the world and ended that same first year wanting to take my own life every moment I had to myself just so my abuser wouldn’t get the satisfaction of doing it himself. Now I am single, living my life on my own terms, with my sweet lil’ puggo knowing that my walls are strong for a reason and that if I never have another “life’s love” again that I will be okay. There is so much more to life than only that, though I lost years believing otherwise.  

***

I’m here for realness and sincerity, honesty and vulnerability, I’m here for the good and juicy bits of life that shine for me when I know I’m heading in the right direction.

Rad Fatty Love to ALL,
<3
S

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Friday, 7 August 2020

THIS FAT OLD LADY’S FAT FRIDAY – IS THIS A DIET?

THIS FAT OLD LADY’S FAT FRIDAY – IS THIS A DIET?



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Canadian Doctors Admit Utter Failure of Weight Loss Interventions, Then Double Down

APANEL~1A Canadian panel has released new guidelines for “obesity management” that seem to be based on the adage “admit what you can’t deny, deny what you can’t admit,” while co-opting the language of fat activism in an attempt to keep their profession profitable.

Let’s start with them admitting what they can’t deny.  As the paper’s lead author told The Guardian:

“The common medical advice to eat less and exercise more doesn’t really help most patients…whenever people decrease their calories, they activate a bunch of hormones and neurochemicals within their brain, within their gut, that drive the weight to come back on. So we’re failing people all the time when we say go on a diet so they can lose a little bit of weight, [because they often] regain all of it, if not more,”

This is something fat activists have been saying for literally decades, but I guess thanks to the “experts” who have been harming fat people and profiting off of this idea for those same decades for finally catching on? Still, this is a victory for fat activists.

That’s the “good” news, but here’s the bad news. Instead of just admitting that bodies come in lots of sizes, Obesity Canada and the Canadian Association of Bariatric Physicians and Surgeons (the group who drafted the guidelines and who, it should be pointed out, all have a tremendous financial motive to say this) are pushing the idea that being fat is “a complex chronic illness” that needs to be treated with a “variety of methods” including dangerous (and expensive!) and often completely ineffective diet drugs and surgeries.

If you want to know how absolutely ridiculous this is, take a look at their new “definition” of “obesity”

“It’s not about the amount of body fat, it’s not about where the body fat is. It’s not about the type of body fat,” said Arya Sharma, scientific director of Obesity Canada and one of the more than 60 authors. “It’s just a very, very simple question. And that is: Does this person’s body fat or excess body fat affect their health? If it does, we’ve got obesity. If it doesn’t, we just have a large person with a lot of body fat.”

This is anything but a very, very simple question. Since fat people get the same health issues that thin people do, the assumption that body size is what is affecting health is the root of the problem and, it must be pointed out, the root of the profit. (Especially considering the health effects of constant stigma as well as the treatment disparities caused by medical fatphobia.) But of course we are talking about a world in which being “Board Certified in Obesity Medicine” is a thing. so a LOT of people have a stake in maintaining “fatness” as a profit center.

To put this into sharper relief: if a thin person in Canada develops a health condition they are simply a thin person with a health condition. But if a fat person in Canada develops that exact same health condition, they now have two health conditions and one of them is the size of their body – which is the same size as it was the day before.

This does not smack of scientific rigor. It does sound like a desperate attempt to keep a branch of medicine (that has only succeeded in harming fat people) alive and profitable. They still seem to be recommending “counseling” interventions that have been shown to be no more effective than just giving every fat person (or, I guess now every fat person with a health issue) a pony as well as interventions that can and do kill fat people.

In fact, Dr. Sharma (who, full disclosure, has positively shared my work on a number of occasions despite our disagreements) told The Globe and Mail:

“There’s this idea that if you’re using medication or using surgery, then you’re somehow cheating,” he said. Yet he noted no one would think someone is cheating or “taking the easy way out” if they took insulin for diabetes or received a kidney transplant if they had chronic kidney disease.

It’s not about the easy way out – it’s about risking our lives and quality of life for no reaon. Since evidence-based interventions for the actual health conditions that fat people (and thin people) get already exist, these body size manipulation interventions are completely unnecessary and serve only to create profit for healthcare professionals and harm fat people (including not just being blamed for intervention failure, but also risking our lives and quality of life.) I imagine they’ll also be using this as a loophole to sell these interventions as a solution for cultural weight stigma, but that remains to be seen.

Now, do I think every doctor who believes this is driven only by craven self-interest? Not necessarily. It’s possible that they are so high on their own supply of fatphobia that this seems reasonable to them, but that doesn’t make it any less harmful or wrong. The important thing here is that this will result in the continued unnecessary harm to fat people, despite good research that weight-neutral healthcare can be effective without the risks.

While there is some value here, both in finally admitting that the typical “eat less, exercise more” recommendation is, and always has been, useless, as well as at least claiming that they want to reduce the stigma fat people face, the result could actually cause more problems for fat people.

First, I note that they were not in a hurry to take responsibility and apologize for all the fat people who have been harmed by doctors’ insistence – despite a complete lack of evidence- that this is a successful intervention and those fat patients who failed (which was nearly all of them) were to blame/liars/lazy/weak-willed etc.. Intead choosing to simply move forward to subjecting fat people to more dangerous (though often no more successful) interventions. The organizations behind these interventions have long been trying to increase “access” to dangerous and expensive surgeries and drugs and so they will no doubt use these guidelines to try to do that, putting more fat people’s lives at risk while driving the very profitable interventions that they sell.

So how can we use this? Well, in doctor’s appointments we can point out that even experts have now been honest that diets don’t work, and then when they recommend these dangerous interventions we can pivot and ask for the same interventions that a thin person would be given.

In the meantime, we must keep fighting for a world where the diversity of body sizes is respected and affirmed in healthcare and the world at large.

Did you find this helpful? If you appreciate the work that I do, you can support my ability to do more of it with a one-time tip or by becoming a member. (Members get special deals on fat-positive stuff, a monthly e-mail keeping them up to date on the work their membership supports, and the ability to ask me questions that I answer in a members-only monthly Q&A Video!)

UPCOMING ONLINE WORKSHOP:
Dealing With Fatphobia At The Doctor’s Office

We’ll discuss tips, tricks, and techniques for getting evidence-based, weight-neutral (and sometimes even fat-positive!) care from doctors and other healthcare practioners, even in a fatphobic healthcare system. There will be lots of time for Q&A, a recording will be provided, and there is a pay-what-you-can option.

Details and Registration: https://danceswithfat.org/monthly-online-workshops/
*This workshop is free for DancesWithFat members

Like this blog?  Here’s more stuff you might like:

Wellness for All Bodies Program:A simple, step-by-step, super efficient guide to setting and reaching your health goals from a weight-neutral perspective.  This program can be used by individuals, or by groups, including as a workplace wellness program!

Price: $25.00 ($10 for DancesWithFat members – register on the member page)

Non-members Click here for all the details and to register!


Body Love Obstacle Course

This e-course that includes coaching videos, a study guide, and an ebook with the tools you need to create a rock-solid relationship with your body. Our relationships with our bodies don’t happen in a vacuum, so just learning to see our beauty isn’t going to cut it. The world throws obstacles in our way – obstacles that aren’t our fault, but become our problem. Over the course of this program, Ragen Chastain, Jeanette DePatie, and six incredible guest coaches will teach you practical, realistic, proven strategies to go above, around, and through the obstacles that the world puts in front of you when it comes to living an amazing life in the body you have now.
Price: $99.00 Click here to register
($79.00 for DancesWithFat members – register on the member page)

Love It! 234 Inspirations And Activities to Help You Love Your Body
This is filled with thoughtful advice from the authors Jeanette DePatie, Ragen Chastain, and Pia Sciavo-Campo as well as dozens of other notable names from the body love movement, the book is lovingly illustrated with diverse drawings from size-positive artist Toni Tails.
Price: $9.99 softcover, $7.99 Kindle, ($6.95 + free shipping for DancesWithFat Members)

Book Me!  I’d love to speak to your organization (and I can do it remotely!) You can get more information here or just e-mail me at ragen at danceswithfat dot org!



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Wednesday, 5 August 2020

CNN Report: Medical Fatphobia Could Undermine Effectiveness of COVID-19 Vaccine

Weight stigma in medical care kills fat people and then blames us for our own deaths.A CNN article (that I will not link to here because it is such a dumpster fire of fatphobia) explains that fat people are often left out of drug trials, including for vaccines, and that we’ve known since at least 1985 that the vaccines produced through these trials can be less effective for fat people.

The article’s conclusion (as evidenced by its headline): The existence of fat people will undermine the effectiveness of a vaccine for COVID-19.

This is just blatant fatphobia. They’ve known for 35 years that the current process of creating vaccines puts fat people’s lives more at risk, but have done nothing to solve that problem. Now, when it could affect the lives of thin people, they are trying to pile the blame on fat people for existing.

The article notes that vaccines are also less effective on older people and so a protocol was developed to solve that problem. For fat people – nothing but a transfer of blame.

Fuck that. Fuck a bunch of that. Fuck all of that.

Medical weight stigma kills fat people and then blames us for our deaths. I’ve talked about it here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here. Now they are trying to blame us for the deaths of others because the vaccines they create fail us. Fatphobia is the problem, not fat people. They know we exist, they should start treating us with equality instead of with blatant disregard for our lives including a general policy that killing us is completely acceptable, including if it’s just easier or more profitable.

The focus should be on creating a vaccine that works for people of all sizes, not making a thin people vaccine and then blaming fat people for its failure.

Did you find this helpful? If you appreciate the work that I do, you can support my ability to do more of it with a one-time tip or by becoming a member. (Members get special deals on fat-positive stuff, a monthly e-mail keeping them up to date on the work their membership supports, and the ability to ask me questions that I answer in a members-only monthly Q&A Video!)

UPCOMING ONLINE WORKSHOP:
Dealing With Fatphobia At The Doctor’s Office

We’ll discuss tips, tricks, and techniques for getting evidence-based, weight-neutral (and sometimes even fat-positive!) care from doctors and other healthcare practioners, even in a fatphobic healthcare system. There will be lots of time for Q&A, a recording will be provided, and there is a pay-what-you-can option.

Details and Registration: https://danceswithfat.org/monthly-online-workshops/
*This workshop is free for DancesWithFat members

Like this blog?  Here’s more stuff you might like:

Wellness for All Bodies Program:A simple, step-by-step, super efficient guide to setting and reaching your health goals from a weight-neutral perspective.  This program can be used by individuals, or by groups, including as a workplace wellness program!

Price: $25.00 ($10 for DancesWithFat members – register on the member page)

Non-members Click here for all the details and to register!


Body Love Obstacle Course

This e-course that includes coaching videos, a study guide, and an ebook with the tools you need to create a rock-solid relationship with your body. Our relationships with our bodies don’t happen in a vacuum, so just learning to see our beauty isn’t going to cut it. The world throws obstacles in our way – obstacles that aren’t our fault, but become our problem. Over the course of this program, Ragen Chastain, Jeanette DePatie, and six incredible guest coaches will teach you practical, realistic, proven strategies to go above, around, and through the obstacles that the world puts in front of you when it comes to living an amazing life in the body you have now.
Price: $99.00 Click here to register
($79.00 for DancesWithFat members – register on the member page)

Love It! 234 Inspirations And Activities to Help You Love Your Body
This is filled with thoughtful advice from the authors Jeanette DePatie, Ragen Chastain, and Pia Sciavo-Campo as well as dozens of other notable names from the body love movement, the book is lovingly illustrated with diverse drawings from size-positive artist Toni Tails.
Price: $9.99 softcover, $7.99 Kindle, ($6.95 + free shipping for DancesWithFat Members)

Book Me!  I’d love to speak to your organization (and I can do it remotely!) You can get more information here or just e-mail me at ragen at danceswithfat dot org!

 



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Tuesday, 4 August 2020

Fat Bias In Treatment

Researchers are looking at data on N1H1 flu to see how COVID-19 might go. For example, reviewing how fat people fare.

Results: We identified 22 articles enrolling 25,189 laboratory confirmed patients. The pooled estimates indicated obesity significantly increased the risk of fatal and critical complications of influenza A(H1N1)pdm09 infection (for fatal, OR = 1.81, 95% CI: 1.23-2.65; for critical complications, OR = 1.67, 95% CI: 1.13-2.47). However, we found significant interaction between early antiviral treatment and obesity (╬▓ = -0.28). After adjustment for early antiviral treatment, relationship between obesity and poor outcomes disappeared (OR = 1.14, 95% CI: 0.94-1.39).

Gee. Fat people didn’t get the same disease treatments as thin people, and didn’t recover as well thin people who were aggressively treated. It’s almost as if not treating diseases in fat people is a problem.

It’s unreasonable to wait for people to lose weight before treating diseases.



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