Carrying extra pounds has many health consequences which create a heavy burden on the individual as well as their families and society more broadly. So, there is indeed a great need to raise public awareness about the importance of keeping a healthy weight and how governments and care providers can support people in doing so.
I applied for a job a few years ago and I got down to the last few candidates. I was very excited as it was a 'big brand' and at the final 'papal nod of the CEO' stage he began to ask me what I thought was an odd line of questioning. It started pretty early into what became the longest half hour of my life. "So Mark, have you always been overweight?" he asked.
Not all women size 16+ are unhealthy. Just as a starting point you might want to make a not of the fact that women are all shaped and sized differently which result in different dress sizes and in a high street that sizes everything on a whim what is a 16 anyway?
As a therapist that specialises in weight loss, I've heard more excuses why people can't lose weight than a secondary school teacher asking for homework. Everything from I'm allergic to healthy food, to fruit and vegetables make me fat - and the finger seems to be always pointing at everyone else...
In a quest to help the nation slim down, last week saw me enter a mass of debate about size 16 mannequins. Surely in a time when many women want to lose weight for health and confidence reasons, bouncing up size 8 mannequins to a size 16 is not ideal.
A weird situation has developed: globally around one billion people are malnourished and conversely two billion are obese. One might argue that if the weight on the scales was redistributed, some form of equilibrium could be found.
As you walk around town take a good look at the habits of fat people. You have probably noticed how so many of them binge out in public and often eat as though its the last supper. Of course don't judge the person. Instead judge their eating habits and let this motivate you to eat less, eat better, and move more.
We all have habits that we want to change: eat less, exercise more, stay out of our overdrafts; but this is easier said than done. Why is it that bad habits are so hard to break and new 'good' behaviours are so hard to stick to?
Carbohydrates tend to increase our hunger due to the insulin-stimulating effect of blood sugar. Also our ability to binge on them is much higher than on fatty foods. How much pure butter could you eat compared with an unlimited supply of cakes, ice cream, chips, chocolates etc? Is this where we are going wrong?
It's inspiring to know that the media has taken measures to promote different body types but that doesn't necessarily make it easier. Often times, these attempts still seem like gimmicks, making the average sized woman feel even more like a sore thumb.
He had to call out "Fatty Must Run" and then roll around laughing and soaking up the admiration of his dad and his friends... I often find myself the victim of abuse from these children not even out of primary school yet. What compels them to be so mean?
"Tell me about your weight?" he asked and I knew where this was going. "The problem is you are just too unfit to run this marathon" he continued. If rolling your eyes was a more acceptable way of showing your contempt I would have done so but instead I simply replied, "What you mean is I am TOO FAT?" To which he just smiled and sat back in his chair.
Fattist folk are just unhappy people. That's the truth of it. Happy people don't have prejudices because they don't spend their time fixated on the people that surround them. They just live their own happy lives. All prejudice comes from a deeply unhappy place inside ourselves.
Recently I walked into my local swimming pool at 6.30am. Among the swimmers wiping sleep from their eyes, there was one woman racing up, down, up, down, up, barely raising her head for breath. What assumptions are you already making about her? Keen? yes. Fit? clearly. Thin? no.
Rather than championing dangerous and butchering weight loss procedures - which by the way are offered privately without any mental health assessments or help - shouldn't we be asking for a long term solution to better our health not 'fixing' a 'problem' that wont go away unless tackled at the root cause?
Making huge, sweeping generalisations about the particulars of a person's lifestyle based on how they look is not only fist-gnawingly unfair, it's preventing overweight people from getting the medical care they need and deserve (and it's keeping the Daily Mail in business).