Worth Your Weight

March 19, 2008

Whenever I feel guilty about HAES …

Filed under: HAES — worthyourweight @ 2:40 pm

When I feel like a bad practitioner (or even non-practitioner) of HAES, I try to keep in mind four things:

1. Mental health is a part of health. Kind of duh when worded that way, but (IIRC) I saw this first articulated by fillyjonk. It was one of those eureka moments. Avoiding the crazymaking dieting causes is priority number one in trying to be mentally healthy. Not stressing is another good strategy. Trying not to get depressed about things beyond my control — like my size — is another.

2. I don’t smoke. I drink maybe one glass of wine a week. I don’t do drugs. Avoiding smoking, drinking (to excess, I’m guessing), and drugging are all higher on the pursuit of health checklist than avoiding junk food. (Source coming soon … I hope … if I can find it in my labyrinth of bookmarks.) And if you do smoke? I know how challenging it is to quit. E-mail me if you’d like support on that front. Definitely not judging anyone who smokes. But the only FA blogger who I know for certain smokes also eats way healthier than I do and exercises more/more consistently. So it’s a trade-off, isn’t it? We must suit ourselves.

3. “Exercise” can be a dirty word to those of us tortured in gym class and encouraged to diet. Even though I use the word, I think of it as activity. I bet a lot of guilty-feeling fat people are doing more activity than they think. IMO, activity should be construed as broadly as possible. And I’m not yet convinced (see point 4) that activity has much to do with health outside of, you know, making you feel better/more confident/less stressed. Ultimately it may be just another way to attend to mental health.

4. Health is probably mostly/all genetic. I got to say, I was flabbergasted when I first read Pattie Thomas say in “Top 10 Things I’m Tired of Discussing” (PDF) that lifestyle probably doesn’t determine health. I made a note to research that further, but Junkfood Science’s analysis of the Women’s Health Initiative (WHI) Dietary Modification Trial went a long way toward convincing me.

In the end, guilt and worry about what steps you do/don’t take to be healthy could be the worse thing for your health.

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5 Comments

  1. Most of what I’ve read concerning heritability of height and weight is that weight is more strongly inherited than height. Solution to fatness? Grow a few inches.

    Comment by Karen — March 19, 2008 @ 3:01 pm

  2. I hate exercise for it’s own sake, never could do it. OTOH, I do like to garden and to go tromp through other people’s gardens. I do better if exercise is a means to a goal, rather than the goal itself.

    Comment by Piffle — March 19, 2008 @ 3:39 pm

  3. Right on, Karen and Piffle!

    Comment by worthyourweight — March 20, 2008 @ 10:27 pm

  4. Piffle Very interesting point of view. Kings regards for the author!

    Comment by impotencja — May 11, 2008 @ 6:58 am

  5. Most of what I’ve read concerning heritability of height and weight is that weight is more strongly inherited than height. Solution to fatness? Grow a few inches.

    Comment by wiagra — May 11, 2008 @ 5:04 pm


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