GMA and Oprah’s Magical New Diet

Ah, yet again we find the magic of diet marketing. Today on GMA, they had Oprah’s new diet guru, Bob Greene on to talk about the Six Foods you Should Banish from your Kitchen. He even brought a healthy eating contract for everyone to sign. Oh boy!

I found the whole concept hilarious since most of these horrible foods have never been a part of my diet and yet, here I am fat as can be! So let’s examine…

Greene’s six foods to avoid:

Soda is empty calories and sugar, so you have to cut it out. Instead, drink water, low-fat or fat-free milk, or tea. Fruit juices are good too, but remember, fruit juice, not fruit drink.

Transfats. They clog your arteries, they’re high in calories, and they may even make your body store fat in the abdominal area. Aside from being unsightly, it’s also bad for your health. You’ll find these in cookies and baked goods which might be made with margarine.

Fried foods. I mean, even if you use a good fat oil like olive oil to fry foods, anything fried has a lot of calories. Try things that are oven baked instead of fries. There are calories either way, but oven baked has fewer.

White bread. You don’t have to get rid of carbs entirely, but white bread is made from refined grains, which are stripped of their most nutritional parts, so you’re eating empty calories. Instead, we want you eating bread made form 100 percent whole wheat or whole grains.

High-fat milk and yogurt. Use 1 percent or non-fat dairy in their place, which are often just as good, only with lower cholesterol, fat, and calories.

Okay, so let’s see, I’ve never drank much soda, I don’t use margarine in any cooking, I do eat fried foods sometimes when I eat out. I eat out a lot but I don’t get something fried every time, so lets say I eat something fried once or twice a week. Don’t eat white breads or pastas at all and I particularly do not eat any bread with high fructose corn syrup in it. And I either drink skim, reduced fat or soy milk.

So, adding to all that, I eat lots of veggies, drink plenty of water and rarely snack in between meals. By Greene’s and the rest of these deluded diet mongers’ assessment, I should be SHEDDING the pounds, right? Yeah, right.

I’m by no means a paragon of health, but neither do I sit on the couch sucking cheese whiz through a straw. I’m healthy, and I’m fat.

And because I’d much rather have a high eating competence than buy into your concept of health, Mr. Greene (note, not a doctor–or even a fake one), you can take that contract and well…eat it.

11 Comments

Filed under fat, Health, Size Acceptance

Art and Beauty

An amazing thing happened in my life.

I learned to love my body.

And one of the driving forces that helped me to do this was my art. I’ve always dabbled with painting and I am by no means a talented renderer. But I’ve dabbled so long that I finally figured some things out.

I started painting women that looked like women are expected to look. And that was okay. But then I started wondering what other body shapes would look like. And I started painting those too.

It freaked me out at first, when people started asking if they were self portraits, mainly because they are so explicit. They’re not self-portraits–at least not in the sense that they represent anything specific about me. I was not thinking of my vagina when I painted them. But in another way, they are portraits of how I see myself in a positive manner and how I view the beauty standards of the majority of Americans.

My painting lately, much like my writing, is buried underneath my mound of other priorities at the moment. But since I have a lot of new readers lately, I thought I would share my art with you all.

Oh and FYI, my art is generally NSFW! That means don’t click on it while you’re boss is standing behind you. Unless she/he happens to be very open minded.

You can see the whole gallery here.  Please note that I have made this gallery public for a short time only. Go check it out now before I protect it again.

The thing is, we can talk all we want about fat acceptance–and talk we should. But we have to see it too. Not just in ourselves but in others and we have to show others how beautiful we really are.

Leave a comment

Filed under fat, Feminism, Media Literacy, Self Image, Size Acceptance

Less calorie intact + more calories burned = weight loss. Simple?

I got to thinking about the primary argument that anti-fatties make when fat acceptance gurus unload their pile of flaming logic upon them.

Basically, every argument boils down to this: diet and exercise work, I’ve seen it. How dare you say that diet and exercise don’t work!

Okay. So, in my life, the people who make this argument are the very same people who pump hundreds of dollars annually into the diet industry trying to force these things to work for them.

So I have a challenge, if you will. Not an us vs. them type of challenge. Its not a challenge that is about proving anything because its not safe or responsible to diet for those reasons. (I don’t believe its safe to diet for any reason but I’m trying to make this argument from the perspective of those who believe otherwise.)

The challenge I offer is a personal challenge for anyone who believes that diet and exercise are parts of that ever-simple math equation that less calories eaten, more calories burned will lead to weight loss.

The challenge is simple, too. Go on your diets, if you must. But I challenge you to diet without putting a single dollar into the diet industry. This means none of the following:

  • Diet books–healthy recipe books are okay as long as they are not published by major weight loss companies such as Weight Watchers or South Beach. But no water chestnut diets, no cabbage soup diets, no self-help books on weight loss, no inspirational weight loss stories.
  • Diet websites
  • Diet meetings such as Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig, etc.
  • Special exercise equipment–beyond the simple treadmill, weights etc. I’m thinking of things like the Thighmaster.
  • Foods bought at the grocery store that are made by diet companies or marketed specifically to dieters. This includes but is not limited to:
    • Smart Ones
    • Lean Cuisine
    • South Beach
    • Slim Fast
  • Exercise videos, health magazines, reruns of the Biggest Loser or any other media that perpetuates beauty ideals

Because if it really is just as simple as diet and exercise, if being fat is really all our faults, then shouldn’t YOU be able to do it without having to put money into an industry that makes its living on telling you you’re not good enough?

And as a discriminating consumer, why would you ever trust any diet industry product when they would make more money off of you if you gain the weight back? Don’t you remember the tapeworms in the diet chews in the 70s? Corporations have no morals and will stop at nothing to make money. What makes you think that they don’t design these programs and food for failure–to keep you coming back.

So, if you refuse to believe that it is far healthier to learn to love yourself as you are and if you refuse to believe that being fat is more than just a lifestyle choice, then I challenge you to reach your own self-improvement goals without the help of the $30-40 billion diet industry.

Because if it really is that simple, then why would you need them?


No, ya’ll, I don’t really advocate dieting at all, for anyone. This is tongue in cheek. This is an example of how clinging to these ideals of weight loss are so heavily influenced by the diet industry and the media. As much as people believe that it is a moral imperative to hate your body and diet, they also believe that they can’t do it without help. What a racket!

And hey, people are going to diet whether I like it or not. I’d be a lot happier if they would do it without pumping money into the industry.

1 Comment

Filed under fat, Health, Media Literacy, Self Image, Size Acceptance

Thank you, Kate Harding. Thank you, Shapelings!

I typed this originally as a comment, but it got long so it became a post. This is in response to Shapely Prose’s triumphant stand against Dan Savage’s GodHatesFatties religion. This is a big thank you to Kate, Fillyjonk, Sweet Machine, Joy Nash and all the other sisters and brothers of all sizes taking on the diet-pushing, body-hating, money-churning self-hate machine.

This has been a weekend of me realizing how desperately people need to cling to their self-hatred.

If people admit that you can be healthy at any weight, that being fat is not a sin, that it is NOT OKAY blame, moralize or mock people for their size–whatever it is–then they have to admit that they can’t change the way THEY are.

I know that people at least my age (27) have grown up our entire lives with these standards of self-loathing during every commercial break we’ve EVER watched. Not to mention the magazines, weight loss books and water-cooler conversations.

And what we have the hardest time realizing (and I’m so glad that I have) is that there is no diet, no amount of cocaine (via post secret today), no amount of surgery and no amount of hating other people that can make us love ourselves.

Thanks for getting the message out there, Kate. For taking all the negativity and dealing with the trolls that think being behind a computer means they can call someone fat and be any less of a sad, immature pig.

And thanks for holding up a mirror to people like Savage and the others who hold so strongly to their ideals of beauty–disguised as health–so they don’t have to face the long, hard journey of learning to love themselves.

True self improvement can only come from self-love. It takes a hell of a lot of courage to go down that road.

1 Comment

Filed under fat, Feminism, Health, Media Literacy, Self Image, Size Acceptance

Can mothers love their fat daughters?

Last night, I fought with my mom…again.

I was telling her about this survey that I read on Shapely Prose. I told her about the four factors of health: little to no alcohol, no smoking, exercise and eating fruits and vegetables that can lead to a longer life regardless of weight. On the surface, she agreed with the article, which was cool. But does she take note of the fact that I’ve got three out of the four healthy factors down pat?

No, she focuses on the one that needs more work and harps on it. I kinda lost it and went off and she got mad and hung up on me.

In trying to figure out how I felt about the whole thing and looking for the underlying issues that caused me to react the way I did, I came to a very important realization.

My mother can never accept me as the beautiful, healthy, active, happy fat woman that I am until she stops hating herself.

And I will never feel like I measure up in her eyes until she sees me for what I am, instead of what I’m not.

Now, I just have to figure out a non-accusatory way of explaining this to her. *sigh*

2 Comments

Filed under fat, Health, Self Image, Size Acceptance

Oh yeah, knitting.

Wow, I haven’t blogged about knitting in awhile. Mainly because I’ve been lazy about getting the pictures of my recently finished projects off my phone.

But I haven’t slowed down yet. Just finished a pair of beautiful alpaca fingerless gloves. Right now I’m working on baby garments for a friend and a scarf made from a beautiful handspun yarn.

Its the baby shirt that I’ve been working on that taught me a lesson that I wanted to share it with you.

Bamboo is a wonderful, arguably sustainable material that is versatile, cheap and beautiful.  But as a circular needle it sucks the ponies out of a horse’s balls. Yeah, that bad.

I had a nice pair of Crystal Palace bamboo circulars #8 and while I never found them very easy to use, they were just okay. But then I paired them with a berrocco acrylic blend that  is very prone to splitting. I was having to stop every three stitches to individually place each stitch on the needle. Then, the wood even started to splinter which made it nearly impossible to knit smoothly! And although I couldn’t prove it, I swear one needle was bigger than the other!

So I gave in and dropped $15 on a pair of Addi Turbo metal needles in the same size so that I could finish my project in peace and relative speed. Wow, what a difference! The joins are seamless! I recommend them over anything else I’ve tried. I have a few pairs of cheap plastic circulars which are just fine, but nothing is as sexy and sleek as these Addi needles.  I hardly ever have to pause my knitting to push the stitches!

I am definitely a fan and wanted to share for anyone who hasn’t tried these.

5 Comments

Filed under Knitting, Techniques, tools

It’s Off-Topic Day!

Okay, the previous post was feminism related so I guess its not totally off topic. But this one is! Its about DEODORANT!

Yes, ladies and gents, I am on a deodorant adventure! Lemme ‘splain. No, its too long, lemme sum up!

Being the brilliant mind that I am, I decided to quit using my aluminum-laden deodorant smack dab in the hottest week of the summer. So I trucked over to Akin’s Natural Food store and picked up a deodorant crystal.

Things didn’t go too well. I smelled bad. Like, worse than patchoulli masked BO. It was amusing because no one would tell me either. And I asked them to! Still, I gave it a good three weeks to give my body chemistry a chance to get used to the lack of aluminum.

To no avail. I don’t sweat much so I figured it had to be the weather. I gave up the stench and went back to the old toxic standard.

The whole experience caused my armpits to secede from the union, complete with irritation and breakouts. After six months, all has healed and balance is restored.
And it is now a balmy 40 degrees and I’ve decided to try again. This time, though I tried a Toms of Main product instead of just the crystal.

So, since I knew you’d all want to keep up with my armpit adventure I figured we’d keep score here.

I’m going to measure it in two ways: how much others say I stink and how much I think I stink.

Today is Day 1 of the Great Armpit Adventure.

On a scale of 1-10 with 10 being the stinkiest, I am still a promising 2.

I’ll have to get back to you on the opinion of others. I don’t think it’d be quite appropriate to ask my co-workers. I’ll have to wait until tonight to ask Matt.

2 Comments

Filed under environment, Health