Diet culture's favourite words to lure you into the revolving torment of false utopia that the magic number promises.
Does the number set you up for what you will eat and how much you will exercise in the day?
Do you have food rules dictated by promises that the goal weight is achievable?
Is your goal weight a number you were when you were 18 years old?
Is that goal weight genetically possible?
Does that goal weight cause you distress?
Do you weigh your self multiple times a day and get annoyed at the fluctuation?
Will all of your hopes, dreams, and happiness come to you when you reach that goal weight?
Unfortunately, we must believe the hype because it means so much to us. Being fat or having fat, is not culturally accepted and as the media, and governments suggest, we have a war on Ob***ty on our hands.
More of a crisis than the number on the scales.
Fatphobia and weight bias are worldwide problems. The discourse suggests fat is bad and skinny is good. Governments are spending millions of dollars to fight this so-called war- yet eating disorders are largely underfunded and are a much more of an acute health problem to address. We are shaming kids for being in larger bodies, shaming kids for what is or is not in their lunch boxes, and this so-called war on obesity has actually helped raise the incidents of eating disorders. With lockdown being a time to get fit, and not get "lockdown fat" kids have just stopped eating. READ HERE.
Eating disorders are now at epidemic proportions and have the highest mortality rate of all mental health illnesses but being ignored by health systems.
A goal weight whether it is to gain or lose is mostly an unachievable misconceived idea of "health" that usually becomes detrimental to health, physically and mentally.
Diet culture will create innate feelings such as guilt, shame, depression, anxiety. Behaviours of binging, starvation, and restricting that can cause you to become socially isolated. Diet culture will leave you physically malnourished with nutritional deficiencies, and feeling lethargic and tired because of the rigid rules.
BMI - Body Mass Index. Reject this now! Don't let anyone use this number to measure your health or put you in a category. This number does not measure things that matter to health like your blood pressure, blood lipids, fitness, biochemistry etc.
BMI is also a racist measure as it puts people who are not of European origin in a category that does not account for genetic diversity.
Since BMI is a bulls**t indicator of health then the overweight and obesity labels are to be rejected also. They are words that only stigmatize weight and exacerbate fatphobia and shame, people, into thinking they are not good enough in this world, which turns people to diets which as we know are the biggest predictor of weight gain.
Health At Any Size HAES
Health at any size promotes size diversity and rejects the idea that health is measured on the scales and your dress size.
If you are a health professional reading this I would suggest that learning more about this topic will assist you in being a more empathetic and helpful clinician. Particularly if you work in eating disorders.
If you are curious to know more about this I would also encourage you to learn more about this idea.
Yes that number is crap
The number on the scale does not equal your worth.
The number on the scale does not equal health
The number on the scale does not measure your body composition (and the scales that do measure composition are not that accurate either)
The number on the scale is not set in stone
The number on the scale is supposed to fluctuate
Do not use the number on the scale to influence your food intake for the day
What to do instead.
Throw away the scales
Refuse to be weighed (even by your GP) unless you are going into surgery and need anesthetic.
Focus on feeling good.
Tell your friends/ colleagues you don't want to join in "BORING" conversation about weight and diets
Trust that you will settle at a weight and size that your body will settle at and feel great at.
Learn intuitive eating skills, learn to recognise hunger and fullness and allow yourself to eat all foods freely without restricting.
Allow yourself to enjoy eating
Don't compare yourself to others- you are unique