Academic Resources for Fat Positivity

Being fat doesn’t mean being unhealthy, and fat shaming is definitely unhealthy.  Non-academic articles on this subject abound, but everyone has opinions, right?  That’s why I’ve compiled a handy list of academic research on obesity for folks who want to discuss this topic.

Some non-academic starting points
A nice summary of several popular issues: http://fozmeadows.tumblr.com/post/80930076791/female-bodies-a-weighty-issue
http://thinkprogress.org/health/2014/02/24/3322321/facts-eating-disorder-awareness/

In-depth lay person’s discussion of meta-analysis
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/01/03/opinion/our-imaginary-weight-problem.html
http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2014-09/ucl-sd091014.php
A personal remark about social violence directed against people who are obese and the intersection with disability:

http://davehingsburger.blogspot.kr/2013/07/bulls-eye.html

more from the NY Times

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/18/health/research/more-data-suggests-fitness-matters-more-than-weight.html?_r=0

http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/08/08/diabetes-and-the-obesity-paradox/

Research Studies on how fat shaming makes people more likely to get or stay fat, and worsens mental and physical health

http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0070048
Perceived Weight Discrimination and Obesity
“Participants who experienced weight discrimination were approximately 2.5 times more likely to become obese by follow-up (OR = 2.54, 95% CI = 1.58–4.08) and participants who were obese at baseline were three times more likely to remain obese at follow up (OR = 3.20, 95% CI = 2.06–4.97) than those who had not experienced such discrimination. These effects held when controlling for demographic factors (age, sex, ethnicity, education) and when baseline BMI was included as a covariate. These effects were also specific to weight discrimination; other forms of discrimination (e.g., sex, race) were unrelated to risk of obesity at follow-up. The present research demonstrates that, in addition to poorer mental health outcomes, weight discrimination has implications for obesity. Rather than motivating individuals to lose weight, weight discrimination increases risk for obesity.”

http://spq.sagepub.com/content/76/3/268.abstract
Obesity, Labeling, and Psychological Distress in Late-Childhood and Adolescent Black and White Girls: The Distal Effects of Stigma

Findings showed significant proximal and distal effects of obesity on psychological distress through both parent and friend labeling among white girls. Distal effects on psychological distress were also mediated by proximal psychological distress. Among black girls, there were no distal effects, suggesting weight-based stigma is more consequential for white girls compared to black girls.

The Stigma of Obesity: Does Perceived Weight Discrimination Affect Identity and Physical Health?

http://spq.sagepub.com/content/74/1/76.abstract

Perceived weight discrimination is found to be harmful, increasing the health risks of obesity associated with functional disability and, to a lesser degree, self-rated health. Findings also reveal that weight-based stigma shapes weight perceptions, which mediate the relationship between perceived discrimination and health.

  Being fat does not necessarily lead to worse health outcomes.

The obesity paradox in stroke: Lower mortality and lower risk of readmission for recurrent stroke in obese stroke patients.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23611154

Conclusion: Obesity was not only associated with reduced mortality relative to normal weight patients. Compared with normal weight, risk of readmission for recurrent stroke was also lower in obese stroke patients.

Trends in energy and macronutrient intakes by weight status over four decades.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23324441

CONCLUSIONS: Time trends in energy and macronutrient intakes were similar across BMI classes. Research examining how individuals respond differently to varying dietary compositions may provide greater insight about contributors to the rise in obesity.


Impact of body mass index on cardiac mortality in patients with known or suspected coronary artery disease undergoing myocardial perfusion single-photon emission computed tomography.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16580531?dopt=Abstracthttp://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23040832

Conclusion: Normal MPS was associated with low risk of CD in patients of all weight categories. In patients with known CAD undergoing MPS, obese and overweight patients were at lower risk of CD over three years than normal weight patients.

The obesity paradox in surgical intensive care unit patients.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21818652

Conclusion: Obesity was not only associated with reduced mortality relative to normal weight patients. Compared with normal weight, risk of readmission for recurrent stroke was also lower in obese stroke patients.

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