Corrections to E’s Story

I have to make a couple of corrections to this post from two months ago. First, C wasn’t sick for decades; it was several years, but not decades.

The second correction is a pleasant surprise: E is doing better. She’s regained some weight, she has a better attitude toward food, and she seems generally more positive. She’s still lost some memory and some mental acuity, and she still can’t walk, but I’m feeling more hopeful than I had been. Let’s hope the positive trend continues.


Don’t you love discovering things you really, really like?

There is, of course, the question of, “How did I not know about this?”

But you know now, and that’s a goodness.

Making the rounds in the fat community is a lovely music video by rapper/singer Lizzo for her song My Skin.

Lizzo reminds me a lot of Missy Elliot, and I like Missy Elliot a lot.

I watched the video on YouTube (helping out my husband on the (fat) news roundup for the NAAFA newsletter), and saw there were a bunch of Lizzo videos.

Oh boy!

I loved Good as Hell – telling women


I loved Let ‘Em Say (with Caroline Smith)

But what really moved me, was a video Lizzo did as part of the Underneath project.  In it, she discusses her journey as a fat woman and a black woman, while removing clothing, wig and makeup.  Exposing the beautiful natural woman on a number of levels.

This is why I am now a fan of Lizzo.  She is as beautiful inside as she is on the outside.

Fat news through 4/27

As always, thanks to Tante Terri for penning these write-ups (I’m just the editor). Let’s begin.

Fall 2015: Lucy Aphramor writes about the use of mindful eating in connection with healthy weight and diabetes, suggesting a focus on health is more beneficial than a focus on weight.

April 24, 2016: A judge in the UK feels workplace discrimination against anyone who is not considered to be ideal weight is wrong. Judge Philip Rostant believes the only way to put an end to this discrimination is through legislation.

April 25, 2016: Gabor Lukacs is arguing before the Federal Court of Canada that airlines should not be allowed to discriminate against fat passengers. Lukacs is not fat but says he has standing because the issue is protecting public and societal interests, not individual interests.

April 27, 2016: Chrystal Bougon lives in the 10th largest city in the United States, with a population of over 1 million people, and still there are only 7 plus size stores and only 4 of those carry her size; and Chrystal wants to know why there isn’t more choice for the fat shopper.

April 27, 2016: Amy Steverson bought a lovely dress for her prom and photos prove she is lovely in the dress, but she was told at the door she was showing too much cleavage. Smaller-sized girls were allowed into the prom wearing dresses more revealing than Amy’s dress, who was told bigger girls need to cover up.



A recent study claims that there is an association between rising BMI and heart failure in African Americans.

Kind of worrisome, wouldn’t you say?

Could be.

EXCEPT, the raw data is garnered from the Jackson Heart Study.

What is the Jackson Heart Study?  I’m so glad you asked.

The JHS is a large, community-based, observational study whose participants were recruited from urban and rural areas of the three counties (Hinds, Madison and Rankin) that make up the Jackson Miss, metropolitan statistical area (MSA).

Participants were enrolled from each of 4 recruitment pools: random, 17%; volunteer, 22%; currently enrolled in the Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities (ARIC) Study, 30% and secondary family members, 31%. Recruitment was limited to non-institutionalized adult African Americans 35-84 years old, except in the family cohort where those 21 to 34 years of age were eligible. The final cohort of 5,301 participants includes 6.59% of all African American Jackson MSA residents aged 35-84 (N-76,426, US Census 2000).

So all of the participants come from three counties in Mississippi, the state that has the worst health ranking in the nation.  Is ranked 49th for healthcare access and affordability; 48th for prevention and treatment, 51st for potentially avoidable hospital use, and 51st for healthy lives.

30% of the participants were already enrolled in the Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities Study (in which the original participants were aged 45-64), and an additional 31% were family members of ARIC study participants.

It seems the participants on this study should not be considered representative of African American health nationwide.

And even with the deck so clearly stacked, the recent study found increasing BMI was NOT associated with risk for all-cause mortality in African Americans.

So why was this study published under the inflammatory title of:

The Obesity and Heart Failure Epidemics Among African Americans: Insights From the Jackson Heart Study

You want to know why?  Because in our fat phobic, fat hating society, studies with titles like these have access to more research funding.

It should have been titled:

Some Fat African Americans in 3 Counties in Mississippi Could Sure Use Access to Better Healthcare, and as Would Most Everyone Else in the State of Mississippi.

But who is going to pay for that?

Media and research, week of 1/31/2016

Here’s the second batch of media and research items; these are for the week that ended this past Saturday. (Some dates are earlier because they didn’t cross my radar until that week.)

June 26, 2015: Researchers find that weight loss interventions that target the physical environment and access as well as health behavior for the entire population (rather than just fat people) have the least potential for ethical concerns.

January 25, 2016: Patients with type 2 diabetes who intentionally lost weight had no associated reduction in all-cause mortality or cardiovascular morbidity/mortality. In fact, weight loss (regardless of intention) was an independent risk factor for increased all-cause mortality.

January 29, 2016: Our own Peggy Howell discusses how parents pass on their fat phobia and bias to their children, and urges parents to focus on their child’s health and character rather than size.

February 1, 2016: A study on how media coverage affects perceptions finds that simply reporting on studies that people can be fat and healthy is not enough to reduce prejudice; a more radical fat rights approach is needed.

February 4, 2016: Researchers at UCLA find that using BMI (body mass index) as the main indicator of health resulted in the misclassification of over 54,000,000 Americans who, despite having higher BMI, are metabolically healthy by more direct measures. The researchers also find that 30% of “normal” weight individuals are metabolically unhealthy.



Well, actually, I did just throw up in my mouth a little bit when I saw this article.

Oh boy, we now have a whole group of “Fat Concern Trolls,” getting together to help fatties like me to live with our chronic “disease” of obesity.

Let me make this clear – FUCK YOU!!!!!!!!

Is obesity a chronic disease?  I don’t think so, but I’d actually be okay with this categorization if it meant that discrimination against fat people could be ended.  Unfortunately, it mostly adds credence to the folks who want to “cure” fatness.  That’s like trying to “cure” tallness, or shortness, or having brown eyes.

This group claims that their National Obesity Care Week (“NOCW”) is a campaign to advance a

[C]omprehensive, compassionate and personalized approach to treating obesity as a disease.

Uh uh.

Since, there is NO KNOWN METHOD for long term significant weight reduction for MOST people, I assume this treatment must be not weight focused but health focused.

That would make me very happy.  There is a lot of science out there that tells us that there are ways to improve your health without achieving weight loss.  In fact, focusing on weight loss is actually detrimental to the process – because once the weight loss stops (and it ALWAYS stops) the participants tend to stop participating in the otherwise healthful actions.

You see, healthy behavior is GOOD FOR EVERY BODY.  It doesn’t matter what you weigh when you start; and it doesn’t matter what you weigh while you’re doing it, and healthy behavior doesn’t have an end goal.


And I want to be clear here.  Nobody has a duty to do anything with their own body.  If you choose not to engage in any given behavior – no problem.  You do not have a “duty” to be (or be perceived as) healthy, good looking, or anything else.  As Regan Chastain puts it, “You are the boss of your own underpants,” and I’ll add – you are the boss of what those underpants contain.  I am saying that if you choose to engage in behavior that will enhance your own health, the outcomes will be better if health is your focus, not weight.

The article also claims:

Nearly half of people affected by obesity say they have not been advised by a physician about maintaining a healthy weight, according to the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research.

I read this and my first reaction was to call BULLSHIT.  Turns out I was right.

The study they are referring to does not say that.

First, the study is a small (1,100 participants) phone survey; and the data can be found here: and

The question, it seems, is what do you mean by “affected” by obesity?

I would say, that would be someone who is obese.  The study’s chart shows that almost 70% of the obese participants (25% of the study participants) were advised on maintaining a healthy weight, and 80% of those participants were advised about the “risks” of being overweight/obese.

Apparently, this group believes that people “affected by obesity” means everyone.

And in case, you weren’t sure that these people don’t get it :

[A]ccording to patient advocate Michelle Vicari, “Many individuals living with obesity may avoid seeking medical care because they feel alienated and uncomfortable. Finding a doctor who is engaging, compassionate and committed to working with patients to develop a comprehensive weight-loss plan can be life-changing.”

Yes, fat people do feel alienated and uncomfortable seeking medical care.  That’s because they are they are often treated with disrespect and sometimes outright cruelty.  And a comprehensive weight-loss plan would be life-changing – IF IT EXISTED!!!!

Basically, what this group is really concerned with is trying to funnel more money into methods of “dealing” with fat people that are not helpful – things that are focused on weight loss rather than health.

Also, NAAFA (National Association for the Advancement of Fat Acceptance) has said


This is a perfect example.  All these people going to “help” us poor, helpless fatties, without asking us what would help.  You know, like Microsoft programs “help” you do what you want to do, without having a concept of what you actually are doing.

Please, for the love of whatever you hold holy,