The Fat Nutritionist has an excellent, and sadly useful, post titled “A little 101 – I get to exist.”
It is okay to be fat, because fat people already exist.
Fat people have existed for a very, very long time.
Even if all of us tried, not all of us would become permanently thin.
Fat people exist. We have existed. We will continue to exist. So to say that it’s not acceptable to be fat is to deny our right to exist.
Fat people exist. Even if we want to become thin, it often doesn’t work. Which brings me to another thing to read: Medicare’s Search for Effective Obesity Treatments: Diets Are Not the Answer (PDF) by UCLA reviews 31 studies on diets and recommended that Medicare not cover diet programs because they are not effective enough to be worth Medicare coverage. News articles summarized these findings here and here. A quote:
Reviews of the scientiﬁc literature on dieting (e.g., Garner & Wooley, 1991; Jeffery et al., 2000; Perri & Fuller, 1995) generally draw two conclusions about diets. First, diets do lead to short-term weight loss. One summary of diet studies from the 1970s to the mid-1990s found that these weight loss programs consistently resulted in participants losing an average of 5%–10% of their weight (Perri & Fuller, 1995). Second, these losses are not maintained. As noted in one review, “It is only the rate of weight regain, not the fact of weight regain, that appears open to debate” (Garner & Wooley, 1991, p. 740).
Even the American NIH, which is not exactly a fat-accepting organization, admits that weight loss is often limited:
“How much weight does the patient expect to lose? What other benefits does he or she anticipate?” Obese individuals typically want to lose 2 to 3 times the 8 to 15 percent often observed and are disappointed when they do not. (p22)
It is certainly possible have “a successful weight loss” of 5-10% and remain fat.
Getting individuals who are obese down to a normal weight isn’t realistic: Research shows that most people can’t expect to lose more than 10% of their body weight and, more important, to maintain the weight loss over time.
I am all for bodily autonomy. I am also in favor of recognizing reality. That which doesn’t go away? Is reality. Fat people exist. Fat people aren’t going away. Deal with this fact.