LIFESTYLE
22/09/2015 17:51 BST | Updated 23/09/2015 09:59 BST

Plus-Size Blogger Lucie Maniscalchi Has An Important Message For Those Saying You Can't Be 'Fat And Healthy'

Plus-size blogger Lucie Maniscalchi has an important message to share with those who believe size and health come hand-in-hand.

The 27-year-old writes lifestyle and beauty posts over at Lucie Loves It, which was formerly called Fat Beauty.

After suffering from a series of health issues relating to her weight, Maniscalchi decided to overhaul her diet.

But she found that she lost followers and was criticised for her weight loss by some of her readers, who believed she was suggesting that plus-size, as a whole, wasn't a healthy way to be.

Now she wants to set the record straight, once and for all.

lucie maniscalchi

"I feel you can be healthy at any size and equally unhealthy at any size," she tells HuffPost UK Lifestyle. "But for me personally, I was unhealthy."

Maniscalchi, who suffers from polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), says she was spurred on to lose weight after her doctor told her doing so could increase her chances of having a baby.

She also suffers from sleep apnoea, a condition where the walls of the throat relax and narrow during sleep and interrupt normal breathing. This is sometimes caused by being overweight.

"My health wasn't good and losing weight seemed like the best way to help with it all," says Maniscalchi.

However after the blogger began to lose weight through a program at Slimming World, she noticed that she received a few negative comments because of her new lifestyle choices.

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Why We Should Embrace The Term 'Plus Size'

"I believe people should love their body at all stages - be it at a size 32 or a size 8 - and what I'm doing with my body is by no means a reflection of what I feel others should do with their body, it's just what I'm doing for me," she explains.

"It's hard though. If someone says: 'I'm losing weight to get healthy', that somehow implies you can't be plus-size and healthy and I don't believe that at all.

Maniscalchi says she was "gutted" by some of the reactions she received, but adds that she has "tried not to take it personally".

"For me, being healthy and having a family is a priority," she says. "I think now I've very much accepted I will lose followers, but I have to be true to myself and just hope they understand and support me either way."

Which, she adds, the majority of her readers do.

"All bodies are good bodies. I would never tell someone how to live their life, what to think, what to eat or what to do," she says.

"What I do with my body is 100% my decision, just as what you do with your body is yours - that may be to feed it doughnuts or a salad. I don't think anyone can tell you what's best for your body but you."

lucie maniscalchi

For Maniscalchi, the term plus-size is a useful way for her to search for clothing and content that is more likely to appeal to her.

"I enjoy reading and viewing plus-size as these are more likely to be items I can fit into," she says. "While I believe it doesn't matter what size you are, I personally find the label handy."

But the moment the terms plus-size and health are used alongside one another, things can become heated.

"It can really get people's backs up," she says. "I believe you can be plus-size and healthy, as much as you can be a size 8 and unhealthy. I may not eat kale and drink three litres of water a day, but I'm eating a healthy balanced diet and I do feel healthy."

Now, Maniscalchi hopes to hone her newly-branded blog into a source of inspiration for people who want plus-size fashion and beauty tips, but who also want to keep up-to-date with her weight loss progress.

"I feel fitter, I'm more flexible and I'm more active. Does that make me healthy? Yes," she says. "Could I be healthier? Of course. Do I need to be a size 8 to be healthy? No.

"I feel too many people have an opinion on being fat and being healthy and that you can only be one or the other. And I don't believe that at all."

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