Has anyone ever accused you of not being vegan because of your weight?
Have you ever been singled out or mocked by other vegans for it? Or met a fatphobic vegan?
Have you ever been accused of being an “unhealthy vegan” or just accused of being “unhealthy” based on your weight alone?
Someone told me today that they only “vegans” they had ever known had made fun of them for being fat. But I can’t imagine a fat-shaming vegan, because veganism is about compassion. So I assume it was a “plant based dieter”, someone who eats like a vegan for weight loss purposes but still uses animal tested products and wears leather and fur. One of those people with a 100$ juicing machine and designer sweat pants.
But are there honestly (ethical) vegans out there who think fat is by definition unhealthy?
If so, what could we do about it?
And last question: What’s the best clothing line or online shop for a Vegan Fatshionista?
All the time. To be honest, my whole life people have judged me because of my weight. People always tell me that I need to eat more veggies and fruits and stop eating ‘processed’ stuff. I actually find it amusing when they say that because they don’t know how I eat. I eat very little processed food, I’m healthy and I’m active, so I find it offensive when people tell me I’m not a good vegan or a vegan at all because of my body size.
@peppermintcherry I totally agree that that is underweight. I have a decent BMI, and that is definitely not one. @Brosia Sorry if this offends, but I’d think the same thing about someone who appears underweight. I try not too, but when someone appears unhealthy, that is my automatic assumption. If you are healthy despite your weight, and yes, despite is the right word, I give you a ton of credit. However, many times it is the same thing, so it is natural that people are trying to help. If you feel happy, and are healthy, just gently tell them that your health is perfect, and I’m sure that they will back off.
@luckystarjenna: I know I’m going to repeat some of what VeganCaramel said, but I feel it needs expanded on further. The fact that someone’s automatic reaction to the word “fat” is weight loss advice is, to me, a method of shaming. It says, “You are not acceptable as you are, so please do this to change”. There are actually a lot of people who are more focused on their health than a number on the scale. And no, the two are not the same thing.
@silencescreams 5’3 and 89 pounds??? That just screams underweight. I’m 2 inches shorter and my perfect, healthy weight is 107. Sorry, had to throw that out there.
Anyways, being OVERWEIGHT is not healthy, but being chubby or just a little pudgy is totally healthy, as long as the personal is eating well and exercising. Not everyone is going to be a size 3, fact of life.
I may say that, though, but I have a hard time not looking at overweight people and not thinking they must eat shit food. I never say anything out loud and I’m trying to not make that assumption off the bat, but it’s hard not to =/
… Why are most comments assuming here that people who are overweight need to, or even WANT to, lose weight? The fact that we assume everyone who is larger than us must have “oh, they might have tried and they really wanted to lose weight but genetics and metabolism”… what is up with that? This post is originally about being happy with your body – no matter the size. And some people ARE actually happy with their body even if they don’t fit society’s stereotype of healthy and beautiful.
I’m not overweight by any means, but I don’t really care if I’m in my best physical condition. Absolute pure health is not the key to happiness. I could have the best biceps in the world and it wouldn’t matter if I’m not happy. If I spend too much time worrying about my health, I’ll miss out on what I enjoy in life. I do jog often recently. But constant exercise and health nuttery is the sign of a disorder, one which I once went through when I was younger.
Being healthy is not necessarily the end goal for humans.
Corn dogs aren’t evil.
@Brosia I don’t think she was saying that fat people should be shamed or that it is necessarily their fault at all! Some people do have to try harder than others to lose weight. It’s a simple fact. Some people cannot lose the weight because of health issues, some people gain weight because of health issues. However, if it is a health issue, then it is obviously not healthy. So whether you are overweight because of a health issue or because of an eating issue, being over weight or obese is not a sign of being healthy. I do not think any of us are pointing fingers or shaking fists at people who are overweight. Sometimes it is their fault, sometimes it is not in their control, but either way excess body weight is not a sign of health…
@silencescreams: I find it funny how many people have such strong opinions about another person’s weight. You say that diet and exercise are all it takes to lose weight. This is simply not the case. If a person’s excess weight is caused by over-eating or a sedentary lifestyle, then yes, these things will help. But there are so many other factors that can influence a person’s weight and build. Believe me, for some people it is not a matter of willpower. And even if it were, I don’t believe that it is anyone else’s right to shame or guilt them about their bodies.
Christian Jessen would be shaking his head at the though that people would not shake their heads at the idea that peope would not believe “fat is by definition unhealthy.”
If you are fat then you are not at your highest fitness level (unhealthy). Being fat does not mean you eat bad foods all the time, but does mean that you could be healthier. For example, I really like my carbs such as breads and potatoes, and though I usually have healthy multigrain breads, if I eat too much of them I notice I am putting on weight. Even if you eat too much of good things it can be bad.
So anyways…. I would be an ethical vegan out there would would say fat by definition is unhealthy.
What can you do about it?
Have everything in moderation and make sure you are burning more calories then you consume. If you are not exercising not eating more then 1500 calories (for a woman.. about 2000 for a man).
I do believe “Excess body fat is usually a sign of over-consumption.” would be a true statement. A friend of mine is about 89 pounds at 5’3″ at eats whatever the heck she wants when I was a couple pounds less then her at the same height (this was in april… I am currently quite fatter then that , but I know it is my fault) I definitely watch my weight and ate a WHOLE LOT less then she did. Some people (like her) have crazy metabolism that burn a lot, it is your responsibility to take into regards how fast you burn calories to maintain a positive weight. We also have to take in mind everyone has a different body type, amount of muscle mass, so will weigh different amount (For example my mom is 5’3″ weighs 110 is has a lot of tummy fat, but 110 for a very muscular individual would not be a bad weight).
For anyone who is convinced that being fat makes you unhealthy, I highly recommend the book “Health at Every Size” by Linda Bacon (http://www.lindabacon.org/HAESbook/). It clears up a lot of the fat=unhealthy myths out there, and is an excellent read.
Speaking for myself, I am considered obese by the BMI charts. However, my cholesterol, triglycerides, blood sugar, and blood pressure are all damn near perfect. While I can’t do any running-type athletics due to an old ankle injury, I am still able to outpace and endure better than many people of a “healthy” weight. I actually eat less and exercise more than the majority of the people I know. What I do eat is whole, healthy food.
So basically I’m saying not to judge people based on their weight. Don’t assume that someone with extra fat on their body is lazy, gluttonous, or unhealthy. While this is the case with some people, for many others it’s a simple matter of genetics.
I do think that fat is by definition unhealthy, if you mean overweight or obese. I’m not saying an avocado or olive oil is unhealthy, I’m saying a person with an excess amount of body fat will lead a happier, more productive life if they lose the extra weight. I used to be obese and am now my version of ‘slender,’ meaning about a size 6/8. I feel so much happier, healthier and sexier since losing the weight.
I know that people don’t always eat more than other people who are skinnier, but everyone has to listen to their own body. I have to eat less than my sister, because my sister has an amazingly fast metabolism while mine is more like a turtle.
To be healthy, you have to watch every aspect of your diet and listen to your body at the same time. For example, right now I want a snack because I’m hungry. I know what I’ve already eaten today and I know that my body will be walking around for several hours after lunch. I know that it needs something with protein for lunch, but I just need a snack to hold me for the next hour, so I’ll eat something light like an apple now and something with carbs and protein for lunch, like a single serving of whole wheat rotini and a side of sauteed mushrooms.
So the moral of this story is that I used to be overweight/obese and then I didn’t listen to my body. I ate stuff full of fat, even though my body didn’t need it or want it. Now I listen to my body and by doing so I’ve lost weight but also gained muscle because I know what to eat and I know that my body needs exercise. By eating extra food or by eating fat or junk food enough to make you gain weight ( I still eat junkfood…. I just don’t eat it as much and I know when it will make me feel depressed.), it means you aren’t listening to your body and that isn’t healthy at all.
“Excess body fat is usually a sign of over-consumption.”
Most of the time it’s not, actually. I eat the same amount of food as my sister and we have a weight difference of approximately 100lbs.
And most of the food ethical vegans eat is sourced, otherwise the term “ethical” vegan would really mean nothing. Small scale agriculture is much less a damage to wildlife.
And that’s one big misconception – that anyone who has more body fat must, by definition, be eating more. It ignores genetics and childhood factors, but it also ignores that two people can be eating the same amount of food, but one could be eating unhealthy, or just food with higher fat content.
I’ve never come across another vegan (ethical or not) who cared at all about the amount of body fat that another vegan has.
Though, technically, there is a legitimate vegan concern to be had here.
Excess body fat is usually a sign of over-consumption.
Much of the food that most vegans currently eat is produced using antiquated agricultural methods that cause harm to animals.
When you consume much more of this food than you need to, you’re causing much more harm than you need to.
This is a non-issue at this point though and certainly not a concern of mine.
I don’t think there is a problem with lean vegans harassing people with excess body fat simply because they have excess body fat.