Fat-shaming — the process of insulting, ostracizing, or otherwise stigmatizing people who appear overweight — actually does far more harm than good, according to new research reported by ThinkProgress.
“In fact, overweight people who face weight discrimination are likely to eat more, exercise less, and have a higher chance of ending up obese.
“Researchers at the Florida State University College of Medicine conducted an experiment where they tracked a nationally representative population of Americans between 2006 and 2010. The findings were striking. Americans who were overweight in 2006 — but not obese — and stigmatized for it were two and half times more likely to end up obese four years later than those who hadn’t been fat-shamed. Furthermore, those who were obese at the beginning of the study were three times more likely to still be obese in 2010 if they faced weight discrimination.
“There is robust evidence that internalizing weight-based stereotypes, teasing and stigmatizing experiences are associated with more frequent binge eating,” wrote the researchers. They also believe the stress caused by overweight Americans’ public and personal humiliation elevates hormones that promote weight-gain — a trend that has been witnessed in other demographics with high stress levels, too. Continue reading “Fat shaming’s effects”