Glorifying Obesity? WTF?

Hello, my name is Sarah and I do something that I know is really bad for my health.

I read the comments.

And in all the wonderful body positive, fat positive, plus size yogi and HAES posts I read there is a common thread. A horrified, self-satisfied set of voices who are very vocal (spoiler alert, it’s not the lovely supporters of these posts leaving compassionate and insightful comments for the author)

It’s the CAPS LOCK brigade who shout “Put those hideous photos away, you are GLORIFING OBESITY” and then if that message is not heard, they go on to double whammy. “BUT WHAT ABOUT THE HELPLESS FAT CHILDREN”  and “COST TO THE HEALTH SYSTEM” and they are angry, so very angry (that’s another post). .Read More

Are you freaking kidding me? ‘Glorifying Obesity’  via a few articles and photos (which reflect a real range of bodies) is sadly not possible in the current climate of fat hate. Why not call it what it is? A reflection of the range of human size and shape. No one is at risk here, back away slowly…

So the minority of media who *dare* to celebrate or even just tolerate a diverse set of bodies are somehow complicit in encouraging the (fat phobic) public get fat or stay fat? That they are glorifying the experience of being fat? That somehow these handful of article and images could somehow traverse decades of discrimination and make obesity glorious? Ha! I wish they could, I hope they are doing something to chip away at the bias, but this is slow societal change.

Let’s just pause to consider that fat people are paid less, promoted less and associate with such words as “lazy” and “greedy” even by educated health professionals (which many studies reveal are reluctant to touch or even treat larger bodies). They are considered “lesser” in so many ways it is breathtaking; less healthy, less attractive, less active.

It’s not possible to glorify something this vilified.

So let me clear up what these articles actually do encourage:

  • Diversity of bodies: it’s OK if your body is not represented by societies current rigid ideal of beauty
  • Self-Esteem: it’s OK if you are fat to feel OK about yourself, your style and your body
  • Self-Compassion: It’s OK to be nurture and nourish yourself and your body at any size
  • Inclusivity: It’s OK to be different
  • Basic Human Rights: You are worthy of love and affection and to take up as much space as you please
  • Health: It’s not possible to judge anyone’s health by looking at their body
  • Worth: You are worthy of living life at any size and not waiting till society says you are worthy of that holiday, that dress, that man

I am sure there are more (let me know!) but when I look at this list, I think that about sums up all the traits I want to have as a human. How could helping people feel worthy and comfortable about themselves be a cap’s lock offence? Why aren’t we thrilled that bias and judgement are being challenged?

I really hope that this media presence of larger bodies continues and at some point the angry haters get lost in the joy of celebrating all bodies. I hope we can glorify not just fat bodies, but all bodies. Short, tall, wide, narrow..all of them! Bodies are amazing and we should never feel shame for the shape ours is.

Note: I completely and wholeheartedly agree that there are many other groups in society which experience similar and greater discrimination, this post is just exploring one.


Join us in November in Hepburn Springs to become a Body Positive Warrior! 


  1. says

    Oh Sarah – I just read your post and could cry with frustration at the stupidity of those comments you’ve received. It takes courage to swim against the stream girl, and you are a fearless swimmer. Of course the haters will get through your armour sometimes, but I hope you can shake it off and remember the thousands of people whose lives are better for your courageous and wise messages. Love to you sista!

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