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Are Body Positivity And Weight Loss Compatible?

The other day I was on a rampage of watching Leena’s videos on youtube, you might know her as justkissmyfrog and if you haven’t I would highly recommend her quality content, while at it I found a video she uploaded on January called “The truth about being chubby”.

In the video, she talks about the chaotic relationship in between weight loss and feminism, which I couldn’t completely understand because on my own concept of feminism I think it’s important to support and help people towards a path of self-respect, self-love and self-worth. That support comes in different ways from encouraging them to wear whatever they want to loving their bodies.

Health comes in all sizes that’s a fact and weight loss is deeply rooted in society, especially with the media and the influences we are surrounded by bombarding the “Skinny is better” message, makes a lot of people struggle for years with eating disorders, depression and deep insecurities for not complying with the ideal. For this exact reason all the body positivity movements encouraging that every size is beautiful and models like Iskra and Ashley Graham changing the model industry are of huge importance to educate and demonstrate the temple our body is and how important it is to love it and maintain it.

Supporting people to love their bodies should include encouraging people to work their bodies the way it makes them feel better about themselves either if it is by losing/gaining/maintaining weight or even gaining muscle, from what I have gathered the problematic lays on the concept of losing weight being related to trying to achieve societies’ ideal body and trying to make other people attracted to us and not for a reason a lot of people have that is just working to make themselves feel the best they can.

“When I took a stance to stop letting food control my life, and stopped being afraid of the gym because of the ghosts of dodgeballs past? That’s when I began to radically love myself. And if your body positivity doesn’t allow room for that type of self-love, then you might want to re-examine it.”  Little Bear Schwarz on her article Just Because I Want To Lose Weight Doesn’t Mean I’m A Bad Feminist

The moment you start loving yourself deeply you can make conscious decisions to work your way to the top to be the person you want to be, same goes with education and constantly changing our ideals, the same way we grow up as a person we can change slowly and with care the way we look. The importance lays on being sure that we are doing it for ourselves, maybe because we want to run faster or because we need to lose a few extra pounds for health reasons (this doesn’t mean only skinny people are healthy, if you don’t do exercise or have a healthy diet your body won’t work 100% the way it should).

On Health at Every Size: The surprising truth about your weight, acknowledges that well-being and healthy habits are more important than any number on the scale. It’s a great way to start loving your body as it is but on one of their points, adopting healthy lifestyle habits they include: developing and nurturing connections with others, finding joy in moving your body and becoming more physically vital in your everyday life and tailoring your tastes so you can enjoy more nutritious food which can be applied to lose weight safely and fulfill your personal goals.

Little Bear Schwarz describes it perfectly, “Confidence is a journey, with no “right” or “wrong” duration, route, or method. If you can walk out your door and loudly sing your own praises in a world that aims to confine you, I applaud you. That’s some impressive shit….But if you can’t allow others to honor their current limitations, or perhaps find empowerment in a way that does not mirror yours, you have ceased to make it about empowerment at all.

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Catalina M. Gorbitz
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Catalina is an 18 years old communications student who loves to read, write and old rock music.

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