What do the hashtags #IWontCompromise, #EffYourBeautyStandards, #DareToWear, #AndIGetDressed have in common? They are all ultra intersectional feminist, “body positive,” and have accumulated over 700,000+ tags and counting on Instagram. Oh, and they are also killing women.

Allow me to explain.

No matter how many ludicrous comments saturate pictures of these body positive heroines, obesity is still a massive (no pun) issue within the health system. £25,000 is being spent a minute within the NHS (the U.K.’s national health service) on diabetes alone. In total, an estimated £14 billion is spent a year on treating diabetes and its complications, with the cost of treating complications representing the much higher cost. That number is just scratching the surface, with heart disease, high blood pressure and a copious amount of other obesity related chronic illnesses that are crushing health systems across the western world.

When the inevitable happens, and the obese patient is told that it is now a matter of life and death, the NHS seems to be freely handing out bypass surgeries at the cost of a tidy estimation of £32 million. Yikes. How many nurses would that pay for? How many beds would cater for generally ill people? Imagine how well equipped cancer wards could be with that nice little bonus? 

I know what you’re thinking, and it’s a theory that many people leap to when trying to fight against such a precipitous argument. What if the obese person we are currently critiquing has a health problem that causes weight gain? True, there are things that go wrong in the body that will cause unwanted or unprovoked weight gain. I myself suffer from hypothyroidism — which means lacking the function to create thyroxine and triiodothyronine, so my metabolic rate is constantly slow, which causes weight gain. I also have to take tablets that cause on average a 20 lb weight gain, and I also suffer from many joint and pain afflictions, that I will not bore you with the unpronounceable names of. Essentially, my point is I have every excuse in the world to have a weight problem, and be all “body positivity.”

A couple of years ago I did, being a former obese twenty something who was ashamed of her folds and rolls. Now, I am 55 lbs down and still going, I get frantically asked how I did it. No, not body positive but the fact of healthy eating and exercise. Yeah, those old chestnuts. Disappointing for those who were expecting some magical feel good story. Unfortunately, real life is much more prosaic. It’s a fight. Fighting is hard, and I think therein lies the problem. You don’t get fat by running, you get fat by over eating and not moving enough. Laze and greed to be mercilessly honest. Two genuinely appalling attributes that should not be revered, and is not positive by any means

Not convinced? Still cheerleading behind the big gals who parade in bikinis in train stations to convince people (and probably themselves) that it’s fine to be fat? Ok, how about another angle?

As I previously ran my own fashion label which was published in multiple international issues of Vogue, I noticed how these ultra-feminists attack the fashion industry. Models being too thin, companies not making a big enough selection of plus sized clothes, and designer labels not making plus size clothes at all.

The way these ladies will twist the truth to make it sound like they’re being victimized by the fashion industry is incredible. Of course reality is not as conspiratorial as these feminists would like you to believe. The majority of the time when a fashion brand uses bigger models for clothes that aren’t exclusively for bigger customers, the campaign loses money. The clothes don’t sell as well as ones that were used on smaller models. And whose fault is that? The consumer.

Chanel, Gucci, Givenchy etc. don’t have plus size collections because generally plus size women don’t spend hundreds of pounds on clothing. If these growing numbers of avid hashtag users were so happy with their shape, why isn’t the fashion industry changing? They’re excluding 24.9% of British who are obese from buying their products. Because that 24.9% aren’t buying them. Of course, I’m pleased we’re slowly crawling out of the heroin chic of the 90s, which was the other extreme of the spectrum, but it shouldn’t be replaced with the opposite end.

The most popular hashtag, #EffYourBeautyStandards, is headed by plus size model Tess Holliday, a 31-year-old American woman, and someone who is deemed by the health system as super morbidly obese. She absurdly believes that she can be healthy at the shocking weight of 280 lbs, a comment that she preaches to her 1.7 million followers on Instagram. In my opinion, that is not only dangerous, but outrageously irresponsible. Many of her followers are teenagers, being told their unhealthy lifestyle is fine, to carry on, not being given the warnings of the inevitable, of illness, pain, disability and eventually death. Even on her website’s front page, she describes herself as a body positive ambassador. What positivity is she speaking of?

tess.jpg
Tess Holliday

#EffYourBeautyStandards is a misleading line, again, blaming the standards in which society and the fashion/beauty industries are making everybody envision what real beauty is like. I’m pretty sure we all have brains, and understand Photoshop/airbrushing etc., right? I don’t look at Kim Kardashian and wonder why I have a Buddha belly to match my big bum and she somehow embodies the most “perfect” curves without a sight of a stretch mark or a quiver of cellulite. This isn’t a question of beauty. It isn’t a question of standards. It’s an important debate that questions the seriousness of the damage this movement is causing.

The fact one needs to state something so obvious is itself ridiculous. It’s time to wake up. Obesity is not positive. It’s a dangerous plague that is being fueled by disillusioned women convincing themselves that they are happy, while leading a generation into early graves.

110 comments

  1. I think people are misunderstanding what the author of the article is saying. Body Positivity is a movement indeed and an important one. However, having a positive reflection of your body, no matter what size you are while also taking GOOD CARE of your body is what the author is saying women are straying from. The people commenting are trying to debunk the truth by saying they’re fat and get a certain amount of exercise in a day and/or eat healthy. If that were true to the degree that these people commenting claim, then at some point they would see that their bodies would naturally begin to slim down. It’s not that hard of a concept to grasp: healthy diet+exercise (not even strenuous exercise, just get moving!)=weight loss. The point of this article was to debunk the bad rep body positivity is getting due to these women who literally remain overweight to prove that they too are beautiful at a bigger size than the “norm”, which is counterproductive.

    I’ve seen many overweight women that eat like shit and don’t get any type of exercise but scream body positivity. How are you doing anything positive for your body that it will thank you for in the future? I’ll wait. And I also wonder, is the body positivity movement open to thin women who get told they’re sticks or built like little boys outside of the fashion world? Hmm, I haven’t seen any. It seems like nowadays, we tear down other body types in order to make bigger women feel better about themselves and that’s not fair at all.

    The point, which many people missed, is this: Love your body during all of its stages but also take care of it as well. Taking care of your body includes the following: exercise, eating healthy, drinking water more than juice/soda, reducing things/people that cause you stress, which eventually does affect the body.

    And before anyone throws on their cape for all the fat women the author is supposedly attacking, I too was overweight my whole life until I turned 21. I was told by the doctor that if I didn’t do something about my weight, then I would be in the diabetes zone because i was already pre-diabetic. So what did I do? I changed my diet and exercised 5-6 times a week and now I’m down 100 lbs in 6 years since my journey and I couldn’t be more happier and it’s not because I’m smaller than I was but it’s because I have ENERGY for once, I can do moves in the gym I never thought I could and run for a longer period of time without feeling like death is approaching. If we’re going to condemn crackheads for fucking up their bodies, we need to hold overweight people accountable as well because obesity is NOT something that you’re born with.




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  2. I feel that people on these comments are projecting their own emotions surrounding their history of eating issues/weight and societal judgment onto this article. I believe the core idea behind body positive movement is beneficial for building healthy self esteem and a culture of acceptance in our world. However, this article brings up important points to consider so that this body positive core message stays balanced and healthy in a sensible way. Like with all philosophies/ideas, pushing it too hard toward one side is also deviation from the truth. Balance is the key here. What I agree with the writer is that it’s never good to use a movement as an excuse for maladaptive behaviors. The Body positive movement is ultimately for the purpose of fostering healthy mental health. And why is healthy mental health/self esteem important?–because it will allow individuals to live their full life and make it wasier for them to make HEALTHY Choices. Many on the comments talk about the cycle of negative emotions that prevent them from listening to their bodies and engaging in self care activities. The body positive movement helps end that cycle. Then, the next goal shojld be to use that mental confidence to make concrete healthy choices that make you the happiest. Beauty is health. That is why the skinny/unrealistic media images are not good for women, bc those arent healthy images. At the same time, being obese is not healthy either. Both extremes result from not listening to their bodies. Natural body type and natural eating and natural exercise is healthy. But let me tell you, No one is naturally obese. Bodies aren’t designed to work like that. For anyone. I hope that women use new ideas for becoming stronger and wiser, not a new way to hide. These statements dont apply to every women, of course, just the ones who are still refusing to listen to their bodies.




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  3. Body positivity forces us to challenge the ideal, an ideal that in the end only profits companies in the diet and exercise industry. I write about this extensively on my health and fitness site. My own journey was driven by shame. I often think now, “how sad to be so consumed by diet and exercise.” Let’s face it. We will never look 18 again.




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  4. This article is ridiculous, and absurd. Not to mention it’s poorly written with unprofessional wording.

    Being skinny doesn’t guarantee a bill of health or a healthy life style. Being skinny doesn’t keep people from doing drugs, over eating, eating fast food, not exercising etc

    You have no idea what is happening in said person’s life. You do not know if they have a health condition that has lead to weight gain. You do not know if they’re on a journey to being healthier.

    I eat very healthy, I do not over eat, I don’t even eat meat. However I personally gained weight from multiple diseases. So I don’t deserve to have my body appreciated? I should be ashamed until I lose weight?

    Body positivity isn’t just about full figure women. Body positivity is embracing all forms of beauty which means people shouldn’t be shamed for their differences. That includes breast cancer survivors, trauma survivors, birth defects etc. Shaming someone doesn’t make them skinny, shaming them doesn’t cure the health issues. If someone is technically overweight they should feel positive about themselves? Anyone over weight or full figured shouldn’t be admired or complimented? That’s absurd. Supporting different body types isn’t what’s killing women, processed foods, water toxins, pollution and violence is what kills women. Statistically nearly 3 women are murdered each day in the US. With numbers higher each day in other countries.

    People should stop judging others and making assumptions based on appearance. Instead people should be focusing on social issues that affect all of us.

    End rant.




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    1. “Body positivity isn’t just about full figure women. Body positivity is embracing all forms of beauty which means people shouldn’t be ashamed for their differences.”

      The issue I’m seeing with this statement is that generally skinny girls/women are being left out of this movement. I grew up skinnier than everyone else, and I always felt bad about it. I didn’t feel like a “woman” because I didn’t have C-cups, big hips, round thighs, and a big butt like all the other girls and women around me. I didn’t feel beautiful for a long time. Then when I finally started to love my body, the “real women” campaign really started to make strides, as well as the body positivity movement, which basically told me my body type and size isn’t as desirable “anymore” (I never felt it was to begin with). It told me I wasn’t a “real woman.” It told me I had a “boy figure,” and that I looked like a “stick.” I looked “unrealistic” and “unhealthy” (even though doctors always told me everything was fine on my blood tests and medical checkups). I see that a lot of women in this movement are trying to prove that being bigger is better and/or more attractive, and I truly think that’s missing the mark. It shouldn’t be a contest as to which body type is better—EVERYONE should be included and no body type should be shamed. I just don’t see this happening on a wide scale.




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  5. It should read “…love and accept MY BODY”. Yes, loving your body as it is HERE and NOW allows you to find ways to honor it and take care of it better. YOUR BODY not KK’s body or some idealized version of the female body. Love and it will go a long way towards true health and healing!!




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  6. I have lost a total of 60 pounds since finding a way to love and accept my body. To put it simply “you can’t hate your way to loving yourself”. If obese people can’t find anything beauty and worthy in themselves, why would they be motivated to change? Explain that to me… I HATED myself to the point that I didn’t care. And no amount of shaming or health scaring tactics could have changed that.




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  7. I have lost a total of 60 pounds since finding a way to love and accept my body. To put it simply “you can’t hate your way to loving yourself”. If obese people can’t find anything beauty and worthy in themselves, why would they be motivated to change? Explain that to me… I HATED myself to the point that I didn’t care. And no amount of shaming or health scaring tactics could have changed that.




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  8. I don’t hate fat people, but I feel pity for them. It’s obvious many factors have contributed to their present state. Ingrained, unhealthy habits from childhood – e.g. parents/ caregivers who allowed them snacks without control, to a lack of knowledge about exercise and basic physical laws (more in, less out = accumulation of matter), to a food industry that churns out addictive junk, and now “body positivity” i.e. denial of reality. I grant that there is a small minority who have *real* medical conditions who predispose them to being overweight – but the vast majority do NOT. Just look at crowd photos from the 50s – how many overweight or obese people can you actually find?
    However, I believe the solution is not shaming, but education and empowerment – by this I mean self-education and self-empowerment. Instead of wallowing in the woolly rationalisation of each others’ real weight problems, come back to reality. Try to eat a little less. No, you don’t need that sugary drink masquerading as coffee. Another donut, really? On an escalator – how about walking up those, or consider the stairs? You don’t need a gym membership, but if you can afford a little luxury, let this be it. Otherwise take long walks, do push-ups, or silly-looking aerobics exercises in outrageous clothes. Everything helps, and every drop of sweat means a healthier you.




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  9. This kind of ignores the fact that the movement is largely about letting fat people feel pretty and to stop stigmas about fat people. Fat people are less likely to be given jobs, be considered good romantic partners, receive proper medical treatment, and the list goes on. The average overweight person does want and/or try to be healthier, but a lot of eating problems are reinforced by negative emotions. In short, when everyone views and treats fat people as subhuman, this solidifies the cyclical process of feeling bad, eating, feeling bad, etc. Nobody needs to let everyone be unhealthy, but that doesn’t mean that fat people can’t be confident in their looks. Especially when there are SO many people nowadays who are “fat on the inside,” as some doctors call it. Most people in our culture are eating bad. I was diagnosed with blood sugar problems and nearly got Type 2 diabetes because my diet used to be horrible, but I’m thin, so nobody ever mistreats me or refers to me as the exemplar of the modern world’s horrible eating habits. Focus on the corporations and brands which load up their products with fat and sugar and misguide people, especially children. THOSE are the problem. They predestine children to be addicted to bad food. You can take issue with obesity without making fat people feel worse about themselves.




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  10. I don’t think it is anyone’s business. If someone wants to be happy in their large size, let them. Overweight people are not all lazy people who eat too much; a lot of times there is a totally different story. I think the campaigns are more about not judging other people. No one is asking Givenchy to come out with a plus size line, they are just asking that there be some brands that understand women of all shapes and sizes should have access to all types of clothing. Don’t concern yourself with someone else’s journey unless you are bringing peace, understanding, and joy to the situation. We are all fighting our own battles.




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  11. Americans and likely the British fat because we consume many more calories than we burn and are sedentary. The medical “conditions” that lead to obesity are mainly a myth. http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/obesity/basics/causes/con-20014834

    Obesity, being fat, overweight or whichever term you prefer is primarily due to an unhealthy lifestyle. Society “shamed” smokers to the point where it is banned and most public places and the public health costs are largely accepted. Nobody started a smoking positivity campaign to normalize smoking again.

    The same should hold true with excessive eating and obsesity. Love yourself, have self-confidence and then use those attributes to change your lifestyle. Don’t use body positivity as coping mechanism to justify your fatness.




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    1. Smoking is banned because second hand smoke affects non smokers. There is not such thing as second hand obesity. You can’t ban a body.




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    2. The problem with this is that your reasoning is complete rubbish. Shaming people because they weigh more than is healthy doesn’t encourage them to get out more and exercise, it encourages them to hide which only serves to make them more sedentary. People moving them may also contribute to depression, which in turn can be related to bingeing.
      What exactly do you think you’re accomplishing, with your shaming.
      You are just being counter-productive and a genuinely ugly person.




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  12. To all the people arguing that obese people are healthy, I have a question. Why do I so rarely see any obese people at the gym or walking, jogging, and hiking? I do these activities several times a week and I very rarely see them. How are they as fit and strong as they claim?




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    1. I have an eating disorder. I tried very hard to lose weight in an unhealthy way. By doing this I messed up my metabolism, and it still doesn’t work properly. I don’t enjoy going to the gym because when I do, everyone looks miserable. I know working out the way I did when I was disordered made me miserable. I’ve also been shamed by people at the gym for just being there. As if I don’t deserve to work out because I’m fat. I eat healthy, according to my doctor. I exercise by going to a body positive studio and dancing. I also work as a server and walk about 11 miles a day. The body positive movement is about loving yourself and not striving to fit an unattainable standard. Just because I’m fat, doesn’t mean I eat unhealthy or have health issues.




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  13. Body positivity isn’t about telling people not to change, not to lose weight, and not to fix their health issues, etc, it’s telling them to love themselves while they do it

    Name calling, fat shaming, and general insinuation of disgust has proven to make things worse – make people more likely to fall into depression and binge eat.

    The body positivity movement is about turning that around and telling people it’s okay to love yourself, and that other people should love you too, on your journey to get healthier

    Very, very few people see the message as ‘being unhealthy is good’ – 99% of the time this is ‘understanding’ of the movement is just spouted by people who just hate fat people




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  14. Guess what! We all become wormfood in the end either way. If a person likes their fatness let them have it. A lot of guys like chubby girls anyway. This obsession that somehow eating kale and chia seeds while doing crossfit workouts suited for olympic athletes will keep a person out of the morgue is also a big fat delusion.




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  15. Why is this article focusing on the largest plus-sized model and calling the body positivity bad? What about Ashley Graham. She is plus sized and a healthy weight. What about Jennifer Lawarence, she was called curvy and pulsed sized. There are so many plus sized models and actresses that are healthy weights pushing for acceptance of regular women. I am sorry but a size xxs is just as extreme as a xxl just two sides of the same coin.
    Let’s talk about the benefits of walking. It’s not crossfit but it will keep you healthy, anyone with working legs can walk.
    How about the 80/20 rule 80percent of food intake is fresh whole food and 20percent of food intake is whatever you want. Why can’t we talk about attainable solutions and the importance of self-esteem. What makes supermodels eat healthily and excercise their self image.




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    1. Because they don’t have ground to stand on otherwise, and this article is written on shakey footing overall.




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  16. This is rubbish. You know nothing. Diabetes is not caused by being fat. It’s genetic. Type 1……children are born with. Type 2 can happen to ANY body size……especially if there is a family history. My 95 pound (soaking wet) mother is pre diabetic. She eats healthy and exercises never drinks pop and guess what both of her sisters inherited type 1 genetically so she is at higher risk for developing type 2. She doesn’t mow down chocolate and sugar and junk. Her pre diabetic state isin’t due to being “body possitive”. Idiot fashionistas like this writer should stick to modeling and butt out of issues that are too complex for the remaining 2 brain cells that haven’t been destroyed in thier heads by anorexia and bulimia to understand. We get it. You hate fat people. You are making up “facts” so other people will blame them for thier health issues. Sometimes people are fat BECAUSE of thier health issues HELLO THYROID DISEASE!!!!!! Stick to modeling or go to school to get an education before you start spewing nonsense. If you are REALLY so worried about diet and health go after the food industry that keeps pumping sugars and toxic chemicals into the food that many poor (ie fat) folks are forced to eat due to budget.




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  17. Body positivity isn’t about promoting obesity it’s about promoting confidence. It doesn’t say that it’s good to be obese and you should stay obese, it actually is very involved in the health factors because the goal into be healthy and happy. The point if these hashtags is to destroy the image the media promotes of what women should look like. Body positivity actually leads a lot if women to lose weight if they are obese because it helps women see where they really want to be and what they actually want to change. The whole point is to not shame women into feeling bad about themselves and to be comfortable in your own skin. It’s good and as long as the women are healthy and happy then it doesn’t matter. Healthy doesn’t mean thin.




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  18. I’ll weigh in a bit, being someone who has battled…fat, body image, health and self esteem my ENTIRE life and then did it publicly on the biggest loser 5 years ago!! I was over 200 pounds by the time I graduated high school, honestly I do think not talking to our high schoolers about the dangers of obesity for fear of other eating disorders is a huge disservice…I do wish someone had genuinely, loving talked to an unhealthy high school about her body and health…. we need to start talking openly about all eating disorders, I do see a food addiction counselor now. But I think the bigger problem we have put too much into making your weight who you are… IT IS NOT! We need to stop assuming that if someone’s body is fat, that makes them unhappy automatically. Fat does NOT equal unhappy/lazy/disgusting/unworthy. This is something that I have had to bat off from people my entire life. The older I get, the funnier (and actually just plain sad for the person thinking that) it is. The views we have in this world are so scary. I’ve always known my worth & have enjoyed my life & that has NOTHING to do with the size of my body at that time. We need Please stop acting as though we all need to be miserable because we look different.
    I am now battling to drop 25 pounds again….I’ll never stop the battle for better health….but I will not let the battle rob me of who I am ….happy and confidant!




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