I’m Abi. I’m nearly 30 years old, and I can’t remember a time in my life when I didn’t think something was wrong with my body.
I’ve been dieting in one form or another — monitoring my weight, measuring and limiting my portion size, counting calories and Points, eliminating entire food groups, or just straight up eliminating food altogether — since preadolescence. I’ve hated myself, my body, my shape, my size. I’ve felt guilt and anger and regret over my lack of willpower.
I’ve spent an awful lot of time thinking about food, trying not to eat food, exercising off food, obsessing about food. I’ve believed that nothing tastes as good as being thin feels. I’ve bought clothes that were too small because I knew I was going to lose weight, and then they’d fit perfectly. I’ve donated the same unworn clothes to Goodwill.
I’ve spent excessive amounts of energy trying not to be fat. And I’m still fat.
So I’m beginning to recognize that the problem isn’t with my willpower — it’s with the goal. Through the amazing community of Fat Acceptance writers online, I’m learning about how my body is designed, and I’m discovering that what it isn’t designed for is shrinking.
So I’m working on this. I’m practicing loving myself as I am, as a creation of God — instead of assuming He created me to be thin, and blaming myself for destroying His creation. I’m practicing listening to my body for what it needs, instead of trying to eat according to a system of external regulations that aren’t designed for my body. I’m learning to trust that God made me in a fearful, wonderful way that’s as capable of regulating food as it is of regulating my breathing and heartbeat.
I’m learning that being thin or fat doesn’t have to feel like anything, any more than being tall or short does. And I’m learning that sometimes, food tastes really good.
I believe that a thin body is not necessarily a healthy body, and a fat body is not necessarily an unhealthy — that a person’s health cannot be determined by just their size. I believe that a person can be healthy in any size body, and that intentionally trying to lose weight is nearly always unsuccessful, and leads to a less healthy body, not a healthier one. And most importantly, I believe that hating one’s body is completely antithetical to improving one’s health. I’m writing this blog as I try to integrate these beliefs — which I believe are validated by scientific research — into my lifestyle.
For more information and the science behind these beliefs, please read:
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