• Ciaran O’Connell


Incase you haven’t seen, there’s been a few idiots on our TV screens over the past couple days talking about how we need to fat shame people in order to get them to lose weight. *rolls eyes*

Now, I want to make something clear. I’m not talking from a position of knowing how a fat person feels. I’ve not struggled with my weight or food. So I won’t pretend to know what it’s like to be bullied or fat shamed.

But what I can do is be a decent person, use my sense, use science, and use my profession to recommend the best ways to help those struggling with their weight.

Why is fat shaming being encouraged?

For some reason these fools (one of them says she’s a fitness instructor -jheeeez) believe if you call people fat enough, they’ll eventually decide ‘maybe I should not eat as much’. Their theory is ‘tough love’. Nahhhhh mate. Tough love is letting them know in a personal way that if they continue the way they do then they could cause serious damage to their health, using case studies and evidence to create an intrinsic motivation to do something.

It is so rare that calling someone fat all the time will make them lose weight. Even in the cases where this does happen, those people are left with psychological scars causing them to obsess over their body image, have new unhealthy habits with food (not enjoying it and constantly monitoring), severe anxiety and in some cases depression.

Don’t you think they know they’re fat? A lot probably torture themselves each day when they look in the mirror. For some people, being called fat will only make them more self conscious, more anxious, and more depressed. And as research has suggested, when we feel this we fall in to unhealthy habits, such as over eating for comfort.

What’s the alternative?

Let the professionals do their job! Overweight people know they’re overweight. You should encourage them to speak to a personal trainer that specialises in weight loss management. 1-2-1 expert coaching alongside food logging is a significant predictor for weight loss according to a lengthy study.

It kind of goes without saying that a professional is more equipped to help someone lose weight than fat shaming an overweight person.

A good coach won’t tell someone off for having bad food. They’ll provide an effective diet, that’s maintainable, alongside a tailored exercise programme to lose weight in a practical way, without any of the psychological side effects.

If you’re someone struggling with your weight and don’t want a ‘coach’ that will dangle a cookie in front of you on a treadmill as they call you fat. Speak to me.

Words are powerful tools, use them wisely!


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©2019 by Ciaran O'Connell.

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