I’m here to introduce you to something very special. Brace yourself, it may not be what you’re expecting.
In our thin obsessed culture, dieting and food restriction is approved of. We are told that good health is dependent on being a certain size, and warned of the dire consequences of getting larger. Terrifying news headlines compare fat people to terrorists and tsunamis, and fatness, they claim, is worse.
The diet industry is absolutely flourishing from people’s desperation – Australians spend $800 million dollars a year on weight loss products. People are even resorting to sewing plastic patches onto their tongues in an effort to lose weight!
But trouble is brewing in Dietland. Dissension is building. Educated people are doing the unthinkable. They are questioning whether the pursuit of weight loss is a good idea. They see that this ‘lose weight and get healthy’ message just isn’t working. These are the Health At Every Size people. And they are wonderful.
Health At Every Size (HAES) is a movement supported by professionals from many disciplines, including scientists, academic researchers, physicians, dietitians, exercise physiologists, psychologists, and civil rights activists, who advocate a new way of approaching weight.
Let me tell you what they stand for.
HAES reminds us that weight loss dieting doesn’t work in the long term. The world’s biggest review of weight loss dieting showed that a staggering 95% of dieters put the weight back on, and 2/3 of them end up even heavier than they were before dieting.
This result is terrible for the dieter, but a goldmine for the weight loss industry, who enjoy a steady flow of ‘repeat’ customers.
HAES scientists believe that consumers have the right to know that the product is faulty – not the dieter.
Physiology acts to defend body weight and fights to return to the set point at which the body feels comfortable. It’s not willpower.
Dieting interferes with metabolism, slowing it down and increasing fat stores. Yo-yo dieting (which is what most people experience) is associated with inflammation, which increases the risk of many ‘obesity-related diseases’ and death.
Just small details that the weight loss industry won’t tell you about, that HAES people want you to know.
HAES people are not affiliated with weight loss companies. They don’t work for pharmaceuticals. They are interested in the experience of the person in front of them, in hearing their story, and helping them to understand weight science. Not making money for shareholders.