Fat Talk

April 5, 2011 at 3:12 pm 2 comments

I was reading the news on some of my favorite sites and this headline caught my attention, “‘Fat talk’ makes even skinny women feel huge”. This article by Cari Nierenberg said that 93% of college age girls engage in some type of fat talk, also known as body bashing, when women go back and forth complementing one another and finding fault with their own bodies. Though most of these women said that this helps them to feel better about their bodies, this study done about ‘fat talk’ suggests that just the opposite is true. This article also went on to bring up the point that ‘fat talk’ occurs almost exclusively among the skinny, mostly because those who are actually overweight would be too hesitant to bring up their weight in such a candid way. Many groups and organizations such as the Reflections Body Image Program have entire campaigns that target ‘fat talk’.

No, I haven’t forgotten that this is a blog primarily devoted to the other side of the weight spectrum, but I do think that there are a lot of parallels that we can draw from unhealthy behaviors associated with being underweight as well as those associated with being overweight. I think that ‘fat talk’ exists because women need to feel related to, they need to feel normal, and they need someone else to vocally reaffirm this for them. How does this relate to those who are overweight and obese? Well, I think that one of the biggest things that can help people who are in a position to lose weight is to have someone else vocally reaffirm that they are on the right track. I mean, who hasn’t told a little white lie to an overweight friend when we said that they should totally eat another bowl or ice cream or have a few more cookies, while saying that exercise is overrated anyway? Why is it that we so quickly move to tell people that they’re okay, rather than simply vocally approving of any positive healthy behaviors?

This year from October 17-21 women are making a move to end fat talk. What if we made a movement just to end dishonest talk? Why can’t we simple be honest with ourselves about our weight and go from there? Weigh in America, what do you think? Can we stop the ‘fat talk’, both real and unreal?


Entry filed under: ad campaign, statistics, weight loss.

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2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Brett Lee  |  April 5, 2011 at 9:34 pm

    What if our culture were such that it wasn’t OK to speak lightly of your weight, jokingly calling yourself fat? Maybe pepole would be more likely to change if it weren’t as acceptable to just brush off overweight.

  • 2. reganmclain  |  April 9, 2011 at 12:32 am

    haahah i love your blog!!


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