Beth Ditto: Skinny is not necessarily healthy, fat is not necessarily unhealthy


LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 17: Beth Ditto attends a photocall during the launch of Beth Ditto At Evans Pop Up Shop At Selfridges on September 17, 2010 in London, England. (Photo by Ferdaus Shamim/Getty Images)
Beth Ditto, the lead singer of The Gossip, is known for being a large woman, not particularly caring about it, and not letting it influence her clothing decisions in the least. (Just do a google image search on her, or check out DListed’s archives.) She’s a rarity in that respect and she even has her own clothing line for plus-sized women. Beth wants people to know that she’s not unhealthy because she’s overweight, and that she doesn’t think it’s necessarily healthy to be skinny.

I’m not an unhealthy person and I feel like one of the most tiring parts of being fat and being proud of it is…you do a lot of proving yourself all the time.

It’s really interesting to me that people will look at a thin person and go, ‘That’s a healthy person.’ I want to go, ‘Come open my refrigerator and look and then let’s talk about what you think is so bad.’

To be thin and to stay really thin, sometimes… some people literally do coke all the time. Some people smoke cigarettes instead of eating. That’s crazy. But that’s ‘okay’ because you look healthier.

[From Contact Music via Jezebel]

Kaiser let me know that Ditto is friends with Kate Moss and Karl Lagerfeld, so she clearly knows what she’s talking about when she says that there are thin people who chain smoke and do lines instead of eating. I agree with her to a point. I don’t think it’s healthy to be very thin, especially if someone is doing drugs and smoking to maintain it, just as it’s not healthy to be obese. While it’s been (arguably) shown that people who are somewhat overweight do not have an increased mortality rate, at least one study showed an increased death rate among people who were underweight or obese. So both extremes of the spectrum are unhealthy for different reasons. It’s strange though that our culture associates extreme thinness with health. That’s probably because it’s so difficult to attain at this point.

LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 17: Beth Ditto attends a photocall during the launch of Beth Ditto At Evans Pop Up Shop At Selfridges on September 17, 2010 in London, England. (Photo by Ferdaus Shamim/Getty Images)

LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 17: Beth Ditto attends a photocall during the launch of Beth Ditto At Evans Pop Up Shop At Selfridges on September 17, 2010 in London, England. (Photo by Ferdaus Shamim/Getty Images)

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - JULY 08: Beth Ditto attends the Thomas Sabo Collection Launch on July 8, 2010 in London, England. (Photo by Neil Mockford/Getty Images)

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - JULY 08: Beth Ditto attends the Thomas Sabo Collection Launch on July 8, 2010 in London, England. (Photo by Neil Mockford/Getty Images)

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155 Responses to “Beth Ditto: Skinny is not necessarily healthy, fat is not necessarily unhealthy”

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  1. jen says:

    I think she’s cute. She reminds me of Mae West.

  2. mln says:

    She is a big woman but she isn’t obese she probably doesn’t work out though. Some people just have slow metabolisms and other people either have fast ones or are willing to starve themselves to be thin so she is right.

  3. Samigirl says:

    I agree.
    I also would like to add…eye makeup is a privilege…not necessarily a necessity.

  4. Rose says:

    ‘She isn’t obese’ Seriously! How can you actually say something like that? She is clearly obese. Great singer, but come on now, take your head out of the clouds.

  5. Julie says:

    “She is a big woman but she isn’t obese”

    She is 100% most definitely obsese. Though it looks like she lost weight and isn’t as big as she used to be.

  6. heb says:

    She is absolutely obese. A person who is 5’9″ and weighs 210 is obese. I know because thats me and I looked it up.

    But I like her attitude.

  7. nycmom10024 says:

    Her image in pictures scares me like she could be a character in a horror movie, scary. She is just one odd bird, happy for her that others enjoy her.

  8. Johnny Depp's Girl says:

    Who is this dude in bad dresses?

  9. Tess says:

    Without the makeup and in a great big muu-muu, she might resemble Mama Cass Elliot…not a bad thing in my book.

    But I think her look is cute and distinctive, and if she’s healthy too, then more power to her.

  10. voodoobetty says:

    @mln – do you have to be over 350 lbs to be considered obese in your world? This is an obese woman. And BD can say whatever she wants but she doesnt maintain that figure by eating healthy and simply avoiding the gym. She is in denial.

  11. Crash2GO2 says:

    While she may not yet have high cholesterol or high blood pressure, being overweight greatly increases your risk of cancer, heart disease, stroke, sleep apnea, and diabetes (per the CDC). America is the fattest country in the world, and I hate to see being overweight or obese being touted as healthy and acceptable.

    As America ‘grows’ normal sized people (such as me) start to be labeled as ‘skinny’ and I get the side eye as people wonder if I’m anorexic (I’ve even been outright accused here at work). And it’s doesn’t help with the trend toward vanity sizing either – most women’s clothing stores don’t carry sizes that I can wear any more, which is absurd. I am 5’5″ and weigh between 118 and 120 lbs. NORMAL.

  12. Cazzy_b_UK says:

    She’s brilliant! Fair play to her. the Fern Cotton thing on tele the other day was pretty good! She’s got a dodgy accent mind. Can’t quite place it, sounds kind of Southern, but with hints of an English accent!

  13. Katie says:

    I like her attitude, much I like Gabby Sidibe’s attitude on beauty. However, both of them have said they are healthy and they’re not. It’s put stress on your heart, your bones, etc. to carry that much extra weight. It’s just a fact. And I’m not skinny by any means…I seem to always carry 10 extra pounds on me. But I think there’s a difference between promoting the idea that you don’t need to be skin and bones to feel beautiful and saying being obese is a healthy way to be. There should be a middle ground in my opinion.

    Love this girl’s singing voice btw.

  14. RobN says:

    You an be fat and healthy at 20 or 30, but it catches up with you as you hit your forties. Diabetes, cancer, heart disease, the incredible pressure on joints that results in a vastly higher joint rplacement rates, it goes on and on. She’s right in that skinny isn’t necessarily healthy, but to claim that the clinically obese can be perfectly healthy is a pipedream.

    Obese kids are getting diabetes as small children. Trying to make it seem like its fine does people a disservice.

  15. Twez says:

    It’s easy to say that you feel great and healthy although you are obese when you aren’t yet 30 years old. She needs to get back to me in another decade, when she’s having trouble with her knees and back. It’s not just about cardiac health and such, it’s about wear and tear on your joints.

  16. Anne says:

    Beth Ditto Rocks!

  17. mln says:

    @ poster # 6 Actually it has been proven over and over again that you can’t measure whether someone is obese or not by looking at a chart I actually was told by a doctor (many years ago) that I was underwieght despite the fact that I was technically well within the healthy range for my height. BTW where did you get her height and weight from???

  18. Kitten says:

    “I want to go, ‘Come open my refrigerator and look and then let’s talk about what you think is so bad.’”

    I don’t get. If her fridge is filled with healthy food then why is she overweight? Does she just not exercise? Because that’s not healthy either.

  19. Jean says:

    A few months ago I caught an interview with her on the radio and she talked about wanting to lose weight because she felt unhealthy and self-conscious.
    Funny how it’s suddenly ok to be obese when you actually figure out that working out and changing (and maintaining) your lifestyle are hard work and not easy to come by.

  20. Stephy2185 says:

    She is DEFINITELY NOT obese.
    She looks like a curvy-wonder in that black dress. She looks nice I think.
    Yeah, she’s overweight. WELL overweight I would say, but she’s not obese.

  21. smith says:

    Actually she looks better here than ever (eye makeup not withstanding).

    Can’t we all just stay out of each other’s fridges and bedrooms?

    Come on people …

  22. Bella Bella says:

    Cazzy_b_UK– Beth Ditto is from Arkansas. It’s a southern accent for sure. If there is any hint of English it’s affected like Madonna. I don’t care for her style at all but I like that she is into fashion despite being a heavy girl. Her voice is amazing!

  23. mln says:

    I guess I upset alot of people with my take. I just know alot of women who are active etc and aren’t stick skinny and very possibly will never be however much they excersise. I also think there is a big difference in size between her and Gaborey who btw I do think is obese but that is just my opinion. I also think someone who does lines of coke is more likely to die of a heart attack as well as someone who smokes or has a severe eating disorder.

  24. LittleFATMe says:

    I love her – I love her – I LOVE HER!

  25. Julie says:

    @Stephy2581 – What planet do you live on?

  26. TG says:

    @Crash2GO2 – Oh my gosh you just described me. I am 5’4″ and my normal healthy weight is between 118 and 122. And my family always insists I am anorexic and don’t eat. And other people describe me as tiny and while I consider myself thin I never think of myself as skinny or underweght and always wonder what scale they are using in their heads.

  27. Jaisymaisy says:

    She’s adorable. She’s from Arkansas. Being from Arkansas myself, I can tell you that she looks totally at home here. 8 out of 10 Arkansans are overweight. I’m not saying it’s good, but it’s definitely true. If you ever have the opportunity or misfortune (depending on your point of view) to visit Arkansas, and you are a Yankee, I would recommend your staying away from any catfish house or buffet. It is a culture shock you are not yet ready for. Trust me.

  28. Team Bethenny says:

    She’s quite possibly *severely* obese (i.e. more than obese, less than morbid), and may feel “healthy” now, but let’s flash forward 10 or 20 years. After supporting excess weight for that long, she’ll be facing knee replacements, diabetes, heart disease, etc.

    Not so healthy anymore, huh?

  29. a says:

    she looks super happy and confidant!

  30. She’s right, being on either side of extreme weight is unhealthy. But the reality is that she is not at a healthy weight.

  31. BethL says:

    Skinny people can be unhealthy too, not just anorexics and addicts. But a lot of thin people eat a lot of whatever and don’t gain weight but internally are a disaster. Beth, Gaborey, etc may be healthy now but longterm they will have medical problems. Being a 100+ pounds overweight isn’t good for anybody.

  32. padiddle says:

    GO BETH! I wish more people would realize this, and get into the fat acceptance movement. It’s ridiculous to believe that you know someone’s health and medical history just by looking at them. You have no idea what she eats or whether she works out, so if she says she’s healthy, there is no reason to question her unless someone comes forward with proof she isn’t. People can be fat for a lot of different reasons, including genetics, medicine, thyroid problems etc. Beth looks great to me, because she is obviously confident. I am a die hard runner and when I do races often times people much, much, heavier than me are way faster…this just proves you can be “overweight” and still be healthy.

  33. Samigirl says:

    Not that I care one way or another, but according to dictionary.com…

    ·obese
       /oʊˈbis/ Show Spelled[oh-bees] Show IPA
    –adjective
    very fat or overweight; corpulent.

    soo…I guess she is obese.

  34. judyjudy says:

    Somehow our culture has confused beauty and health as the same thing. It always results in big ol’ arguments between two sides that are talking about completely different things.

    Are Beth Ditto and Gabby Sibide beautiful? Yes. Is Kate Moss beautiful? yes. Are they healthy? Ummm…no.

    And frankly, I don’t care. If a pack of rabid, hungry alligators attacked, I don’t care how great anyone looks in a dress or how much they work out or how lovely they are on the inside…all I care is that I’m able to get out of the way faster. So shine on with your beautiful-self Beth Ditto and I’m sorry if end up getting eaten by an alligator.

  35. Kitten says:

    @ CRASH2Go2 and #26-Me too! My weight and height except my lower range is 115. Wierd. I am normal-looking weight-wise IMO.
    However, I am a gym rat and very healthy eater so I work for it. I will also add that I always notice a girl at my gym who is on the heavier side but is in FANTASTIC shape. She is always in spin class and she CRANKS on the treadmill-faster than a lot of her skinnier counterparts. You can be big and healthy, I just think it’s usually the exception rather than the rule.

    I just also have to add how ridiculous the double-standard is on this site when pics of Kate Bosworth are posted and everyone jumps all over her calling her an “anorexic cokewhore” and a “skeletal mess” etc etc but when it’s this chick or Gabby everyone applauds her. I don’t understand how one extreme end of the weight scale is superior to the other? Please explain..

  36. liz says:

    Magnificent voice. But the extreme opinions about overweight vs underweight need to be reanalyzed. I, myself, at times have a cigarette instead of lunch when I am feeling bloated – but I’m 5’1 and weigh 98lbs, so all of this discomfort is in my head. While at the same time, I can see that she would live a whole lot longer if she lost around 80lbs. I find her charming, nonetheless…

  37. Crash2GO2 says:

    @Kitten: Yes! I have been pounded into the ground during marathons by ‘big’ girls, that is for sure! But they were by no means overweight.

    BTW, ashamedly, I do nothing for exercise now – I used to be unstoppable. But I still look the same, even after a kid. People say ‘wow, you must be in great shape’ and I say ‘looks can be deceiving’. lol Kudos for you for being a gym rat.

  38. Katija says:

    The only reason she grosses me out is because I read that she doesn’t wear deodorant. If it weren’t for that fact, I would actually think she was very cool. But now I can only think of stinkiness when I look at her!

  39. lindsay says:

    hahaha of course you can’t tell if a person is healthy just by looking at them when they are thin. thinness doesnt equal health at all. wow, what a inspiring comment LOL! BUT, obesity IS unhealthy in that it makes your chances for heart disease skyrocket. as does smoking and doing coke as she said, but jsut because she’s fat and watches what she eats means nothing. sure she may be in better shape than most obese people, but she is still way over her BMI meaning she’s putting her body in danger. it’s science, she’s cooll but that comment makes no sense.

  40. Linna says:

    She looks a lot healthier than angelina jolie.

  41. Mei says:

    I have always been big. Despite eating under 2,000 cals per day and exercising 4-5X a week, I have been around 165 pounds my entire adult life. I’m not going to judge Beth, because I have no idea what kind of frame she has underneath her fat/muscle, or what her parents look like.

    Some people will never be skinny or what we call “average.” It’s not just lifestyle and diet. Some people are unable to gain a lot of weight; others are unable to lose a lot of it.

  42. Solveig says:

    I went to New York City, 2 years ago, and as a -naturally- underweight person I was afraid of the amount of obese people I saw there, and I was embarrassed by the way some people looked at my small frame (170cm, 47kilos).
    There’s no need to say such bs to categorize people to the extremes, because some are naturally skinny and some others are naturally fat, no matter what they eat and/or if they exercise.
    So dear Beth, also fat or obese people smoke and do coke, some just for addiction, some for losing weight, So s.t.f.u.

  43. Oi says:

    To whoever said that you can’t look at a chart and determine a healthy body weight: that’s not true. Its called the body mass index.

    Exactly solveig.

  44. Theuth says:

    43: BMI is not a perfect science, because you have to take in consideration also fat percentage and bone structure. But yes, for most cases it’s good, especially extreme ones.
    And I’m shocked someone really thinks Beth Ditto ISN’T obese, it shows how much general judgment about weight is twisted: lots of people are between anorexic and obese, they are normal and can’t find proper clothes in store because even middle sizes are smaller/bigger.
    Hell, I have jeans in my closet of 4 different sizes, and my weight hasn’t changed at all in 7 years: something really is absurd!

  45. gee says:

    I love how some people are so obsessed with weight! Afraid of all the fat people in NYC? Yeah, the chubbies are terrifying, they might just turn around a take a bite out of you. Like my God.

    Some people exercise, eat right and are fat. Get over it! Some of them are healthy, and some aren’t. And if it doesn’t bother them then who gives a crap? We’re not doctors here, how should we know her medical details.

    Smokers, drinkers, worriers, jay walkers.. anything will kill you eventually. You “regular” people of 118 lbs should make sure you’re living chaste and healthy lives in protective bubbles before you throw stones.

  46. anon33 says:

    @solveig:

    Yes, exactly, didn’t John Goodman used to be a fairly well known cokehead? He has never been thin.

  47. Hatsumomo says:

    I love Beth!!!! I dont care how massively huge she may be, she freaking rocks. At first she got on my nerves, with the sweaty half-naked look and no eyebrows(why doesn’t she have EYEBROWS??), but then I Googled some of her shows and she’s really grown on me! And her horrid eyemake-up! And now I just love everything about her. And Im totally gonna order me a dress from her collection, prolly the floral one she’s wearing above. According to her sizing charts, Im considered a small! And Im 5’4 and 158lbs! Yay me!

  48. Gwen says:

    She is obese, and also clearly deluded. Eating healthy food is great, but she is clearly eating too much of it, and that is bad for you. People in the fat acceptance movement keep trying to argue that you can be overweight and still be ‘healthy’ but it is nonsense – just ask a medical doctor.

    Now obviously a lot of skinny people are not healthy at all (heavy smokers, drug addicts, people who live on fast food, Lindsay Lohan, etc), but generally speaking, being thin is MUCH healthier than being fat.

  49. The Hamm is My Dream Man says:

    “It’s strange though that our culture associates extreme thinness with health”

    No, we don’t. Thinness, yes. If we look at a person who is slim, has some muscle tone, clear skin, shiny hair-all that, then we tend to think “oh they are healthy”. If a person is on the thinner side we associate that with health because, quite frankly, people who don’t have a lot of weight hanging on them tend to be healthier.

    An extremely thin person, a person with bones sticking out, a person with skin sagging off their extremities, a person with stringy hair and bald patches and crappy skin? No one thinks that’s attractive except for very few just like very few people find obesity attractive.

    This woman is most certainly obese. And no, I can’t tell if she’s unhealthy by looking at her but I can tell that she’s overweight and being overweight, especially as overweight as she is, can’t be healthy.

    And there needs to be a middle ground. You can’t use extremes in a logical argument because they just don’t hold up. Unfortunately, most people in this country are either overweight or obese. Let’s not make that the norm.

  50. minnie says:

    i think people are confused about the term “obese” and its counterpart, “morbidly obese”. both are clinical terms used in the medical world to describe someone that is a certain number of pounds or a percentage of body weight over the healthy range for their height. saying some one is “obese” is not the same as saying they are “fat” or chubby”. “obese” and “morbidly obese” are not opinions, at least not in the medical sense.

    even taking into account the fact that BD may be larger boned and of larger stature naturally, she is obese, meaning over the weight range that she should be in per her height. its not an opinion. its a medical fact, and i agree with the posters who say that this fact will be catching up with her down the road. that being said, i do think she is a naturally a bigger girl, and that she could never maintain a stick thin weight without adopting unhealthy eating/drug habits.

    contrary to what our culture tells us, there is nothing wrong with having a larger, curvier body type. but for BD to say that her body is at this weight through moderate eating and healthy food choices is ridiculous. but put BD in a poverty stricken community where food is limited and manual labor is a must for one month, and she is not going to come back looking the same.

    gabourney, on the other hand, is morbidly obese. there is no way around this. she is well over 100 pounds overweight; this cannot feel good. and despite what she says, i believe that she is in fact suffering the ill effects of her weight, and if she isn’t already, will soon be facing diabetes and a slew of other health problems related to being so large.

    this is not “fat” hating, and i agree with BD that being significantly underweight is just as unhealthy as being significantly overweight. in the vast majority of cases, neither state is arrived at through healthy measures.

    sorry for the mini-rant, but i’m getting sick of the fact that it is “polically incorrect” to call a spade a spade.

  51. Solveig says:

    gee
    September 24th, 2010 at 12:17 pm

    “I love how some people are so obsessed with weight! Afraid of all the fat people in NYC? Yeah, the chubbies are terrifying, they might just turn around a take a bite out of you. Like my God.”
    ___

    Firstly, I’m not obsessed with weight, and I was afraid of the amount of obese people I saw there*. I was afraid by the fact that some people consider the state they are in (obesity) as normal.
    I was afraid by seeing a 2 or 3yo child looking and walking like the Michelin man, it was sad.
    So try to understand what other people are saying, and not just putting your own thoughts on other’s words.

    *Actually I was also afraid by the fact that inside the subway trains, some people would’ve mistaken me for a pole to hang to, and to being sweeped away in case of emergency.
    No offense to whom is overweight, but small framed people often feel like children in giant’s land.

  52. tekla says:

    she’s great, I love her confidence and she’s a talented singer, too. I have a lot of The Gossip songs on my mp3 player :]

  53. original kate says:

    beth is using an extreme version of skinny – the kate moss diet of ciggies, laxatives, coke and no food. no one in their right mind thinks that is healthy! but being 50+ pounds overweight is unhealthy, too. why does it have to be one extreme or the other? what about someone like america ferrara? she is curvy, lovely and healthy looking. or kate winslet? or christina hendricks? i don’t know beth’s height/weight, but she looks about 40 pounds overweight. and as she gets older she will probably add more pounds, because weight is harder to get off as you age. just because she isn’t seeing any bad effects from her weight now doesn’t mean she won’t later. stroke, heart attack, knees/hip/back problems, diabetes, etc. are all well known problems occuring with a lifetime of being overweight.

    on a positive note, i like style and her self-esteem.

  54. Crash2GO2 says:

    @45: “You “regular” people of 118 lbs should make sure you’re living chaste and healthy lives in protective bubbles before you throw stones.”

    A perfect example of the kind of discrimination normal weight people are beginning to experience from the overweight. Thanks for illustrating my point! Also, try actually reading Solveig’s post before you comment. Then you won’t have to get your blood pressure so high.

  55. Keyanna says:

    She is NOT a fitness instructor or dietician. So who cares?

  56. The Hamm is My Dream Man says:

    Keyanna: I care because people pay attention to her opinions, strangely enough. I wish more people would actually listen to fitness instructors or dietitians.

  57. Megan says:

    I understand that there should be less discrimination against overweight people, and they are still people, they are not to be laughed at or made to feel bad about themselves… a person who is overweight still deserves as much self esteem as a person who is of normal weight. BUT to say being obese is healthy is just… clinically wrong.

    Being either overweight or underweight is not healthy. Your body is designed to work properly with a certain amount of fat, and significantly less or more than that can affect certain functions. I think we need to look at why there are so many overweight people, and deal with the problem, rather than ‘let’s all pretend being overweight is normal and ok’ because it might be statistically ‘normal’, but it is certainly not healthy or something that SHOULD be normal.

  58. original kate says:

    “I am a die hard runner and when I do races often times people much, much, heavier than me are way faster…this just proves you can be “overweight” and still be healthy.”

    no, that proves that they are in shape (and probably very muscled) not overweight. big does not equal fat. ever see the thighs of a ballet dancer or a gymnast? they aren’t small, even though those women have zero body fat.

  59. lola lola says:

    Fat, skinny, I don’t care a long as you are happy. That’s what makes you live longer.

  60. Kitten says:

    ITA with Crash2Go2 & TheHamm.

    @45-”And if it doesn’t bother them then who gives a crap?”

    Well, actually we all should give a crap because obesity drives up the cost of health care so yeah, it DOES affect the rest of us.

    “You “regular” people of 118 lbs should make sure you’re living chaste and healthy lives in protective bubbles before you throw stones.”

    Actually I do live a very healthy life, thank you. I want to live a long time because there are a lot of things I want to do with my life. Nobody is “throwing stones” so maybe you need to stop being so defensive?

  61. jc126 says:

    No one is happy being overweight, or at least that overweight, no matter how much they insist otherwise. At the same time, of course, no one has the right to insult big people and cast aspersions on their character. No one is healthy at that size, either – even if it hasn’t caught up to them YET, bad things are happening internally. And I don’t believe that anyone doesn’t mind shopping at plus size stores, squeezing into restaurant chairs, etc.
    Losing weight is hard, very hard as one gets older, for a variety of reasons. But eating right and exercise are worth the effort even if one doesn’t get really super slim.
    Comparing being obese to being super skinny is stupid and irrelevant. There’s hardly anybody in America these days who is super skinny, so saying “anorexia isn’t healthy either” is an attempt at deflection.
    BTW I live in MA, which is always listed as being one of the leanest states, and the numbers of really obese people I see are shocking, so I can’t imagine how bad the problem is in some states. I need to lose weight myself.

  62. dread pirate cuervo says:

    Fat might be normal, but it is not healthy.

  63. Tinks says:

    Medically speaking, an obese person is 20% or more over their ideal body weight. She is certainly obese.

  64. Crash2GO2 says:

    You know – it’s interesting how we have all learned to tip toe around calling someone overweight, but there is no consideration for people who are on the slim side of normal. For instance, the coworker who made constant comments about my weight until I finally just asked her outright ‘What, do you think I’m anorexic?’ is herself 50 lbs overweight. Yet if the tables were turned and I had been the one taking jabs at her being 50 lbs overweight, you’d better bet I would have been hauled into HR STAT.

    F*cked up it is.

  65. Moi says:

    #45, are you serious? Now fat is ‘normal’? Sorry, no go. I’m SO sorry that I exercise, eat well and weigh 112 pounds. I guess it is abnormal to be physically fit – how offensive of me! And I’m sorry, short of some sort of thyroid issue, it’s not possible to be overweight if you are truly eating the RIGHT foods, the RIGHT number of calories and being active enough. You might still have big bones, but you won’t have tons of excess body fat. Not buying it.

    I gained 15-20 pounds my freshman year in college and went from being lean muscle to fat flab – and guess how that happened? I stopped exercising, started drinking, and ate like crap. Fast forward 15 years and I look as thin and fit I did in high school because I changed my habits.

    Lift weights, do cardio, eat good foods and good fats, don’t go on ‘diets’.

  66. Statler says:

    @Crash- Sometimes hatred is really a form of tribute; once you recognize that it’s easier to deal with sniping from people like your coworker. And you’re right. It’s beyond fucked up.

  67. TeeTee says:

    She needs to lose weight especially as she ages, folks kill me trying to “play” like they are healthy..or bringing up “thin people”, its about YOU, she’s obese…

    its not good for her joints to carry around all of that weight bottom-line, I know because I was considered OBESE at 218lbs, and I am glad the doctor told me that I was obese. I kept repeating it “I’m obese, wow”..”I’m gonna kill myself eating a bunch of the wrong crap, wow”. IT CHANGED MY LIFE 2 YRS AGO.

    I am now down to 151–I made subtle changes like giving up sugar PERIOD and I dropped pounds and inches, I’ve always been a conscious healthy eater except when it came to sugar and bread.

    not a good look, folks need to keep it real.

    ps. when I repeated it to my friends everyone said “no ,you’re not–that criteria is outdated, things have changed, you have a small waist. I lost many of those friends they did not like me talking about my changes and NOT cooking the way I used too.

  68. bored says:

    The girl is majorly overweight and people need to stop acting like ‘obese’ is an insult. Its a term and its not nice to be called such but she is. She makes a really good point that a slender person who does not eat properly and exercise is not healthy. But you cant tell me anyone her size is healthy either. She could be that way from eating tons of ‘healthy’ foods but an overindulgence in food of any kind is not healthy.

  69. juliana says:

    I haven’t liked this woman since she bragged about shoplifting from Goodwill.
    She claimed she was in a hurry, so she just stuck things in her purse and left.

  70. original kate says:

    “Fast forward 15 years and I look as thin and fit I did in high school because I changed my habits.”

    @ #66 (moe? can’t read the name): exactly! and i agree, diets don’t work; if they did there wouldn’t be a new one every month. some heavy people think the rest of us don’t enjoy food or a good glass of wine, that we deprive ourselves and have no life outside the gym. so wrong!

    i love carbs and would never give them up, but when my clothes start feeling a bit too tight i lighten up on what i’m eating and do a little extra exercise until they fit better. i HATE going to the gym but i do pilates twice a week (hate every second of it) and i take a weekly belly dancing class with a friend. then i can show mr. original kate my newest belly dancing moves – let’s not forget how many calories can be burned during sex! it’s about little choices: taking the stairs instead of the elevator, walking 10 blocks for a quart of milk instead of driving, taking the dogs to the big dog park instead of the small one, sharing a dessert instead of eating a whole one, getting nonfat milk in my lattes, avoiding fast food, etc. i rarely see obese people doing these small things, however – they are always standing on the escalator while i am walking up the steps, or letting their dogs run at the park while they sit on a bench, or going to mcdonald’s on a regular basis, and then they wonder why they are fat. it’s not rocket science.

  71. iKat says:

    “Come open my refrigerator” I’m sorry but what?
    She is overweight. Overweight = unhealthy.
    And what other explaination is there? Of course she had been eating too much junk.
    If she ate healthy food, ate a normal and exercised regularly then she would NOT be the size she is.
    I just don’t understand how she is trying to explain being obese.

  72. Felicia says:

    I agree TeeTee!

    I am 20 pounds overweight (after a 15 pound weight loss). You wouldn’t look at me and think I’m a big old fatty but I am overweight for sure.

    I am on thyroid medication, blood pressure medication, an oral and an injectable medication for pre diabetes, and a cholesterol medication. My labs are already showing signs of kidney damage and heart disease. I’m working hard to get to were I need to be & have lost 15 pounds already but that weight certainly stressed my body! You can’t look at me and tell and I don’t feel sick either! But the labs don’t lie & my insides are certainly begging for relief! And I’m only 32!

    Just because you’re happy howyouare and feel good doesn’t mean you’re healthy.

  73. Rosanna says:

    How is fat “not necessarily unhealthy”? I agree that skinny isn’t necessarily healthy but fat “not necessarily unhealthy” is BS.

  74. irishserra says:

    While weight does not always absolutely indicate one’s health, it’s a fact that obesity is unhealthy; and this woman is absolutely obese.

  75. Sumodo1 says:

    I am pleasingly plump. Beth Ditto is more than plump.

  76. Kat says:

    I love Beth and I love her music.I think her attitude of ‘work it’ no matter what size you are should be applauded, because there are too few women who truly do ‘work it’, no matter what size they are.

    I’m fine with people owning how they look, but I’m not okay with people – mostly the militant side of the fat acceptance movement (not Beth) – pushing that being morbidly obese is normal and good. It’s not. It’s a dangerous, unhealthy, miserable existence. I know because I used to be borderline obese. Your quality of life is dramatically reduced on almost every front imaginable. So many people want to normalize that which is inherently not normal.I have no problem with people loving themselves as they are, but I worry when they are taking their cause (whether they be dangerously underweight or overweight) to the nth degree and forcing others to accept it as normal. Most people are not willing to do something unless it is quick and easy, and this is why such a big percentage of society is overweight.My life has improved dramatically since I decided to take care of my health and make the commitment to a healthy lifestyle. I exercise every single day. I eat a healthy diet. It takes commitment. It takes effort. It’s not easy, but it IS worth it.

    Oh, and all those morbidly obese people who say they’re happy as they are – they are lying to you, and to themselves. Abusing food no different than abusing drugs or alcohol – it’s just more open to scorn than other addictions. You don’t become obese (or addicted to drugs & alcohol, for that matter) because everything in your life is going swimmingly.

  77. Robert says:

    Beth Ditto might eat a healthy diet and performing on stage takes a lot more endurance than you could imagine. Couple all that with her powerful singing voice indicating both strong core muscles (diaphragm in particular) and her ability to sing very long phrases without getting winded and I’d argue she’s pretty healthy. Would she be healthier if she lost weight? Yes. Obese doesn’t necessarily mean unhealthy, and body weight alone is not a good indicator of physical health. There are body builders who would be listed as obese based on BMI because they’re weight to height ratio would label them as such.

    I, as a performer, have been extremely heavy and very thin. I got very thin by not eating and became too sick to perform consistently. My reputation was ruined with many directors and choreographers because I had to call out so often. I gained back a significant amount of weight and, yes, would technically be labeled obese. But I am healthier than when I was thinner, not eating, and incapable of long sustained exercise because I wasn’t eating. Yet people thought I was so healthy at the thinner weight based on appearance alone and feel bad that I’m so unhealthy now based on appearance alone. Which is bull.

  78. LindaR says:

    Obese people often say they aren’t unhealthy. Usually they are young and have a few more years to go before the consequences of being grossly overweight kick in. No matter what she says, if you could wave a magic wand and make her 100 lbs lighter immediately, do you think she would go for it? I’d bet at least a thousand donuts that she would. Having said that, I need to lose 10 lbs and find even that amount daunting and difficult. I can’t imagine having to lose a lot more than that.

  79. Carolina says:

    I think as a society we have really messed up our views over what is considered fat and skinny. Being obese in the case of Beth Ditto is not healthy and being super skinny isn’t healthy either. What is healthy to me is someone who eats a lean diet of vegetables, protein, whole grains, and lots of water. Part of being healthy like that allows for moments of indulgence without guilt. Someone who is truly healthy doesn’t party, do drugs, and hardly drinks. Someone who remains active etc. Personally I don’t want to see skinny or fat I want to see lean, muscular bodies on the bodies of real people looking their personal best

  80. Crash2GO2 says:

    This is an interesting read: Funnily enough I saw it just this morning, but couldn’t remember where until now:

    A Heavy Burden: The Individual Costs of
    Being Overweight and Obese
    in the United States

    The George Washington University
    School of Public Health and Health Services
    Department of Health Policy

    What is the cost of being obese in America?
    The overall, tangible, annual costs of being obese are $4,879 for an obese woman and $2,646 for
    an obese man. The overall annual costs of being overweight are $524 and $432 for women and
    men, respectively. For both genders, the incremental costs of obesity are much higher than the
    incremental costs of being overweight.
    Adding the value of lost life to these annual costs produces even more dramatic results. Average
    annualized costs, including value of lost life, are $8,365 for obese women and $6,518 for obese
    men.

    http://www.gwumc.edu/sphhs/departments/healthpolicy/pdf/HeavyBurdenReport.pdf

  81. Kate says:

    Not buying it.

    I don’t care what she does with her body; let her be fat, let her be thin. Don’t care.

    But there is no way in hell that you will convince me she is healthy.

    I was obese (293 lbs/5’4″ at age 24.) I am now 118 lbs. I have been on both ends of the spectrum, and she is correct that being too thin is not healthy either.

    But I know what I am saying when I say she is not healthy.

    Be who you want to be and God bless. But her weight is not healthy. I’m not saying she’s a bad person, and I am not making a judgement of her; I am stating a fact. Not healthy.

    Everything in moderation, folks.

  82. original kate says:

    @ robert: she can perform now because she is young. let’s see how well she can perform at 40 if she is still so heavy. i remember when the “blues traveler singer” (john…something) lost a bunch of weight. he said that he had to because he would come offstage and scream because his knees hurt so bad. he also said he would get incredibly winded, and as he got older the problems got worse.

    if you stopped eating and became so thin you were missing work then yeah, you were too thin. but now you say “technically” you are obese – do you not see that both extremes are bad and that bouncing between them is even worse? why not try to be somehwere in the middle, that is 10-15 pounds overweight instead of obese? and i’m not buying the whole “BMI tests aren’t accurate” argument either. if i can’t button my jeans i don’t need a BMI test to tell me whether i need to lose a few pounds. i don’t even own a scale.

  83. RHONYC says:

    her eyeshadow game is crazy!!!

    that’s a compliment. :-)

  84. moocowhead says:

    Why bother defending yourself? Sorry but being that overweight is not the picture of health, and obviously people who don’t eat aren’t healthy, who the fuck ever said they were. If you want to be fat – be fat, I don’t give a shit – but don’t try to justify it with made up facts and reasons.

  85. orion70 says:

    The only thing that determines whether someone is healthy, is well..whether they’re healthy. No one can tell by looking at someone, and telling stories about how *you* started eating better and shed a load of weight or what not, doesn’t matter. You’re not in her body.

    And while it is quite often the case that those who are overweight, ate themselves into that condition, it’s not always the case, any more than the fact that there are tiny people who defy things by eating huge amounts of food and never gaining.

    If I recall correctly, several years ago BD WAS small, but at the time she also was quite unhealthy…something about kidney problems and no health care or something. So she could very well be much healthier now than before.

  86. adt says:

    I’ll laugh when she gets heart disease and diabetes. Not saying that being super-skinny is extremely healthy, but being super fat is definitely not and she should not try and pretend that she’s healthy when clearly she isn’t.

    I know that bodybuilders and such generally end up on the “obese” side of the scale, but that’s because muscle weighs more than fat and Beth Ditto is definitely lots of fat and very minimal muscle.

    And she should constantly have to prove herself. Her music is absolutely terrible and she’s wayy to heavy – people shouldn’t look up to her at all.

  87. Moi says:

    Original Kate, I am so with you. I eat the things I love. I never, ever deprive myself. If I want cupcakes, I eat cupcakes. If I want a pizza or a giant cheeseburger, fried okra and a coke, so be it. But because I know those things are never off limits, I am able to eat healthy most of the time.

    If you have muscle, it will do most of the work for you. That’s why I will always choose lifting weights or pilates over cardio if time is an issue.

  88. leuce7 says:

    Crash 2GO2, Kitten, TG–I’m also 5’5″, and the lightest I’ve ever been in my life was 147.5 (and I was sick at the time; my normal weight was about 150). I was wearing a size 6 at the time, had a 25″ waist, ate decently (though still with some indulgence) and was active.

    I’m definitely not saying guys are too skinny–my cousin is 5’7″, weighs what you guys do and is at the perfect weight for her–but variation does exist, amongst “fat” AND “thin” people. I was NOT unhealthy at 5’5″ and 150 lbs.

    I went into the hospital a year and a half ago, got placed on medication and gained 35 pounds which I have NOT been able to lose yet. I’m still trying to lose them now, and slowly restarting at the gym, but it’s a hard thing to get back to.

    However, having been both “thin” and not, and having a “skinny” cousin who did nothing wrong to be that way (I always tease her for getting better genes than I did) I think I would agree that society can be hard on skinny people, and it’s that it’s also not okay to not encourage the overweight to have a healthy lifestyle IF indeed they don’t, which is key.

    You can have a healthy lifestyle and be either thin or heavy (especially with certain medical conditions), and you can have an unhealthy lifestyle and be either thin or heavy. We need to stop rushing to judgement based on appearances alone.

  89. Jennifer says:

    Honestly, that’s the scariest woman I’ve ever seen. If she jumped out of my closet and said “BOO” I’d shit myself then die of a massive anxiety attack.

  90. jemshoes says:

    Our culture associates extreme thinness with ATTRACTIVENESS, not health. I agree that either extremes is both unhealthy and unattractive. And of course looks can be deceiving: that skinny girl who wolfs down a cheeseburger, fries and shake every day and can “get away with it” probably has enough fatty tissue in her heart to give her a heart attack by the time she’s 40 if she doesn’t change her eating and exercise habits. As a skinny girl, I can tell you that I present a very good image of health if you put me into sportswear. It’s not until I actually start moving and you hear me breathing that you’d realise how unhealthy I really am! :)

  91. Andrea-2 says:

    You know what’s weird: I’m 5’8″ and weighed 112 lbs. 20 years ago. People accused me of being anorexic. Fast-forward to now and I weigh 155 lbs and people still accuse me of being too thin.

    It’s scary how we’ve become so used to fat being “normal” that 1970′s “pudgy” is the 21st century “thin”.

  92. OC lady says:

    She should take a good, hard look at her diet before she talks about whether she is healthy or not. A diet consisting of too many calories, protein, saturated fats, fast food, sugars,
    preservatives, processed white grains, alcohol, and lacking in whole grains, fruits and vegetables is bad for anyone–skinny or not.

    At the same time, I’ve known people who ate perfectly normal portions–high in fruits and vegetables–and still kept a larger figure. Some thin people can’t keep the weight on, even though they eat a lot. For both, it can be a thyroid condition, metabolic or genetic. So, it’s not always fair to criticize ppl as they can’t help it. It just shows that people make too much of the weight thing altogether.

    And, I love her attitude and style. She makes people look beyond her weight and see her personality and talent. :-)

  93. confused says:

    i love beth but it really makes no sense how if you are only eating healthy food you are that big.. girl get a thyroid test

  94. Beeb says:

    It’s true that skinny doesn’t always equal healthy but fat can never be totally healthy. Your test results can come back perfectly within range even if you’re overweight (you’re probably just eating good food, but too much of it) but the mere fact that you’re overweight puts you at an elevated risk for many diseases and puts a lot of strain on your body (feet, heart, etc.).

  95. Beeb says:

    @ confused…you CAN get that big just eating healthy food. Fat is not a matter of good or bad food. Gaining weight is a result of excess calories no matter where those excess calories come from.

  96. Ally says:

    I’m sorry. I am all for people being proud of who they are, when they are proud of who they are. You do not become obese by eating healthy… give me a break! Say, hey, I eat shitty food all the time and I like it!

  97. Arianna says:

    haahahahahahhaahhaahha
    “Honestly, that’s the scariest woman I’ve ever seen. If she jumped out of my closet and said “BOO” I’d shit myself then die of a massive anxiety attack”.ahahhaahhahaaahha holy shit ahahahhaha

    by this point, i’m sick of celebrities putting out what they feel about weight. is she a registered dietician now? no. shut up

  98. gg says:

    One thing is certain — bright red lipstick always makes your teeth look yellow, people.

  99. Thinc Aboutit says:

    @ Solveig

    Sweetheart, trust me no one was looking at you. No one living in NYC, in fact, gave a fuck about you.

  100. Adrien says:

    I love Beth Ditto.

  101. Anyallama says:

    She is most definitely not 5’9″. I have met her on several occasions and I am 5’10″ and she is a lot shorter than me. I would say around 5’5″ tops. Btw, she’s cool as hell and more power to her.

  102. Claytron says:

    Look at all these posts above from women who are absolutely fascinated with other women’s weight!! The level of insecurity of commentors on this post is rife… and tragic. CLEARLY she is obese, and none of us should require a doctor’s chart or a body fat test to feel comfortable making that conclusion. Even as the fattest, most over indulgent country in the world, I really hope the US has not reached a point where 5’6″, 200+ lbs is considered “average”.

    Ask your parents what they think about her weight – better yet, ask your grandparents. Isn’t it interesting to get the perspective of people who didn’t grow up in a time when egg McMuffins and Hamburger Helper were considered acceptable meals?

    Do America a favor and please leave your own defensiveness, self-justification, and ridiculous politically correct rants at the door. Instead of defending her, why not get your ass on a treadmill? Or if you’re not overweight but someone close to you is, my suggesting is to stop making excuses for them, grow some balls, and encourage them to get healthy. FYI, barely dodging Type II Diabetes and/or heart disease does NOT count as “healthy”. And being PC about this is only helping our country to get fatter and fatter and fatter…

  103. Shay says:

    I’ve had enough of morbidly obese people like Beth Ditto trying to delude themselves, saying that they are completely healthy. I’d like to see them flee from a mugger. I’ve struggled with weight all my life, and can definitely say that I feel better emotionally (even cognitively) when I exercise as opposed to living a sedentary lifestyle (meaning no exercise at all).
    Sure, Ditto is entitled to live her life as she feels fit, but it reeks of profit seeking to promote fatness to sell fatness as an image. What is next for Ditto? A clothes line? This only encourages excess consumption. But what, if anyone criticises excess consumption they are viewed as being extremists.

  104. Solveig says:

    Crash2GO2:
    September 24th, 2010 at 2:00 pm

    You know – it’s interesting how we have all learned to tip toe around calling someone overweight, but there is no consideration for people who are on the slim side of normal. For instance, the coworker who made constant comments about my weight until I finally just asked her outright ‘What, do you think I’m anorexic?’ is herself 50 lbs overweight. Yet if the tables were turned and I had been the one taking jabs at her being 50 lbs overweight, you’d better bet I would have been hauled into HR STAT.

    F*cked up it is.

    ____

    I had the same problem with a person who used to bitch on my weight, and when for the hundreth time she subtle told me that I was anorexic I told her to give some of her fatty tissue to me. I know I’ve been quite harsh, but I was exasperated by her accusations. The funniest thing is that she knew that I ate, because we got lunch breaks together.
    Anyway, see what’s people reaction in seeing Angelina Jolie frail frame: “eat a cheeseburger, you anorexic bi*ch”, “she has drug issues” and so on. Few people are offended by those kind of accusation, and she’s clearly naturally skinny.
    Guess mocking skinny people is fine, even if those people have a hard time trying to gain (and to not lose) weight.

    __________

    Thinc Aboutit:
    September 24th, 2010 at 7:38 pm

    @ Solveig

    Sweetheart, trust me no one was looking at you. No one living in NYC, in fact, gave a fuck about you.

    ____

    There are a lot of intelligent, interesting and educated people here on CB.
    You’re not one of them.

  105. ashleighlauren says:

    It amazes me how controversial the statement “skinny is not necessarily healthy, fat is not necessarily unhealthy” is. Beth Ditto is in no way advocating eating nothing but garbage and not exercising. She’s simply saying that it’s hard to be a fat girl because people assume that you treat your body like crap. As a fat girl, I concur.

    Look, not to get all Mean Girls on everyone here, but women are our own worst enemies. It’s not okay to bash other people for their size. It simply isn’t. There is enough data out there to suggest that weight is largely genetically determined that it is simply sizeist bull.

    I used to be very very thin. I am now fat. The only change to my life is that my thyroid that used to not function by producing too much hormone has now decided that it won’t function by producing not enough. I still eat fruits and vegetables (love them actually), and I exercise regularly. The reality is, my body is not meant to be 125 lbs. I’m working on being okay about that.

    And as for the overweight/obese labels, the standards that were used to categorize people by the BMI changed (I believe in 1997), placing thousands of Americans from being “normal” to “overweight” or even “obese.” Strangely enough, something like 7 out of the 9 people sitting on the board that made that determination worked in the weight loss industry. As for the statistics on health as it relates to obesity, they strongly correlate to the statistics regarding health as it is impacted by yoyo dieting. So, food for thought.

    Look, I realize most of “OMG, Fat People, Booga Booga” fear tactics that the media uses are compelling. I certainly have trouble reminding myself that the important thing is eating healthfully most of the time and exercising. But (and like mine, it’s a big one), does anyone here really think that shaming someone about their size is an effective way to make that person healthier? Really? Whether it’s me looking at a (legitimately and clinically) anorexic chick and telling her to eat more or a naturally thin person looking at me and telling me to put down the hamburger, it just doesn’t work.

    We’d all be a lot healthier (and happier) if we could divorce the concept of conventionally attractive from the idea of health. And I for one would be thrilled if I could read through an article like this (or one about Ellen Pompeo who appears to be just naturally very thin) without the endless cries,”But won’t somebody think of the children.”

  106. dovesgate says:

    All I’m going to add to this is that the dress in the header picture is absolutely FABULOUS and I covet. I covet it lots.

  107. dovesgate says:

    Oooo and her clothing collection has these lace studded ankle boots that are to die for!

  108. truthzbetta says:

    She’s deluded.

    Thin doesn’t have to be healthy, but she’s morbidly obese and scientists add the word “morbidly” for a reason.

    No organ lugs around an extra hundred pounds of fat without paying a price in health.

    Nobody should worry too much about an extra few pounds, but an extra hundred or more! C’mon. She needs a reality check. There’s no way she isn’t sustaining that through overreating and other poor health habits.

  109. RhymesWithSilver says:

    According to most BMI charts, I’m “obese”- the charts say someone my height should weigh between 95 and 120lbs. I’m probably carrying 15-20lbs of fat that I could lose, but not 40 or 60. At 5’1″ and 160lbs, a trainer estimated I had 22% body fat, perfectly normal for an adult woman. I’m a size 10-12, which by some standards is “fat”, but I’ve kept it steady for nearly a decade by eating healthy food and exercising regularly. Come check my fridge and tell me I eat like a fatty. Beth Ditto isn’t necessarily eating like a human vacuum cleaner- she might be taking in a tiny bit more than is necessary, but it adds up. And Kate Moss wouldn’t look like Kate Moss if she were eating healthily, either.

  110. Anon says:

    Just be healthy. I’ve seen bigger ppl who ppl would say are fat but nothing on them jiggles and they have no cellulite. i’ve seen skinny ppl who have cottage cheese thighs. i call them skinny fat ppl. mischa barton … there’s an example of a skinny fat girl. she may be slim but everything on her looks sloppy and jiggly.

  111. DetRiotgirl says:

    @thinc about it LMAO, I was thinking the same thing!

    @slovig I find your comment so odd. Maybe it’s because I’m from Detroit (one of the fattest cities in America, last time I checked), but NYC has always struck me as having way more skinny people than the national average.

    When I first moved to NYC six years ago, I remember being very impressed by all the beautiful, fit people here. NYC is full of models and actors for crying out loud! There are PLENTY of thin people here! Sure, there are a fair number of fatties as well. But, there are enough skinny people here that I have trouble believing that anyone singled you out in particular as being a threat. As thinc of me said, I’m pretty sure no one cared about you either way.

    If you had started off with “I went down south” or “I went to Michigan” or “I went to cracker barrel”, I would totally get where you’re coming from. But, NYC is a weird place to single out as being an attack of the fatties.

    Btw, I retract everything I just said if you are not from this country. I spent a year living in The Czech Republic, and it was very rare to see a fat person there. In fact, throughout all my travels around Europe, I rarely saw fat people anywhere. So, if your only experience in America was NYC I can see where you’re coming from. But, if you live in America, I find your statement mystifying.

  112. Jess J says:

    Love all the mind readers on here. Just go to hell. Like Beth said, have you seen the inside of her fridge? ….No, so stop acting like you know.

    AND there is no such thing as discrimination against “normal” sized people. That is just laughable. Talk to an overweight or underweight person, then compare your experience. Its just not the same. The fact of the matter is, people deserve dignity and respect NO MATTER WHAT THEY LOOK LIKE. Guess haters gonna hate.

  113. Iggles says:

    She’s obese. That’s not healthy. Neither is being anorexic or bulimic. They all suffer from unhealthy eating disorders.

    The fat acceptance movement is a crock of sh8t in my opinion. Get out, exercise, and reduce your portions. Then you won’t have to whine about how people should accept your fatness. Really, for most people it’s that simple. Unless you have an medical condition (like thyroid problem, etc).

  114. Alicia says:

    Hey Solveig, you were afraid of the fat people in NY for real? they are fat not zombies you know.

    now as you say you weigh 47 kilos (under 100 pounds) and are 170cm (around 5.8) that is the other side of the spectrum, very underweight also not mormal just like Beth fatass, she is a great singer and cool by the way, but if she is not obease I am Jesus Christ with a vagina, maybe the food she is eating is healthy, but the portions is another thing…

  115. Chris says:

    I think they need to put a higher tax on junk food so obese people can pay for the financial strain they put on the health system. For starters I’d tax the $hit out of Coca-Cola and fast food outlets.

  116. Sally says:

    Wow, this post is really interesting. I guess one of the reasons is because so many posters who I’d normally consider sensible and to have good judgement seem to be making ‘odd’ comments.

    BMI is not always an accurate judge of healthiness – like another poster said it doesn’t take into account how much muscle you have, or the weight of your bones, or fat %. It is known to not be accurate for people of Asian descent, Polynesian descent and athletes. I’m sure there are lots of others too.

    I’m going to jump on the bandwagon of the 5’5 girls who are roughly 120 pounds. (Only no one has ever told me I was too skinny or anything like that.) I have a friend who is the same height, but over 160 pounds – however she eats healthier than me, (and less than me) and has a much better exercise regime (regular vs minimal). Yes, you can be ‘technically’ overweight and still be very healthy, whether it be for medical reasons, or you just have a bigger body type. Sure it’s not going to be as great for your joints etc in the long run, but I agree you can’t tell how healthy someone looks just by looking at them.

    - Sally (MSc Food Science).

    /rant

    On another interesting note I read Christina Hendricks’ measurements the other day and they’re almost the same as mine, although she’s a bit taller. Which means.. girl is actually quite small, even though she’s much bigger by Hollywood standards!

  117. KC says:

    I dunno her statement just warranted this reaction ‘DUH!’

    Of course its not healthy to be too skinny but just the same its not healthy to be too overweight. I think that line between too skinny and too overweight only you really can know.

    I mean if you eat all this crappy junk food and fast food and just bad food in general and start getting overweight obviously that’s not healthy. But if you don’t eat and smoke and do drugs to get skinny that’s obviously not healthy either.

  118. Krista says:

    While being overweight may not be healthy, it’s been my experience that a lot of thin/averaged sized people don’t do anything to maintain weight, they don’t go to the gym, they don’t eat healthy, they just happen to have high metabolisms.

    That’s no more healthy than being overweight.

    For the record, I’m probably considered obese and I workout for an hour everyday (yes, 7 days a week at 6 in the morning)and I eat relatively healthy. It’s not as easy as it sounds to just “get off your fat ass and work out”.

  119. Crash2GO2 says:

    @ashleighlaure: What a lovely thoughtful post. I too have low thyroid issues although I was lucky enough that they caught it very early.

    To clarify my post about being ‘picked’ on, when I asked my co-worker, did she think I was anorexic, she said “Yes.” There is such a backlash now against anorexia that anyone who is slim (especially if they are over 30) is immediately suspect. And all the side eye comes from other women, so I suppose it’s just another weapon in the arsenal women use to tear each other to shreds. *sigh*

    I also wanted to add that I don’t know how much metabolism really has to do with anything. I know that for myself, I am not a ‘foodie’. I don’t think about what I am going to have for breakfast lunch or dinner, I hate grocery shopping and I dislike cooking. If I walk by a restaurant and delicious smells waft out, then BAM I’ll realize I’m STARVING. But I have friends who do struggle with their weight who really enjoy food. They have pictures on their desktops of meals they’ve had in restaurants; they talk about their favorite foods at the fair that they only get once a year, etc.

  120. wonderful says:

    Crash – I am the same. It’s hard to explain to people that you arent anorexic, you just arent a food lover. You arent anorexic, you are just full enough to not have to finish the gigantic plate. I HATE cooking, such a huge amount of time spent to shovel the end result into your mouth in ten minutes. People can be really offensive if you dont want to eat their 1:00 am delivery pizza.

  121. Solveig says:

    @Detriotgirl, as a european I thought that the american obesity issue, according to magazines and documentaries, was quite exaggerated. But when I saw it with my own eyes it was unbelievable, and not in a good way.
    Obesity in Europe is not a common problem (except maybe in UK, and Germany for what I recall), overweight people here are mostly elderly, rarely obesity is an issue that affects young people.

    @Alicia, I think something got lost in translation. I wasn’t afraid of an obese person per se, this is just ridicoulous, I was afraid of seeing how numeorus overweight people were there in NYC (50% of the overall population?).
    How can I complain about people mocking me (since I was a kid) for being underweight, and then do the same with whom has the opposite problem?
    Yes, the fact that I’m so underweight is the reason why people use to insinuate that I’m an anorexic (not that being anorexic is an offense, because it is a serious disease, but I hate to always explain people that I was born this way), but I look less underweight than it sounds considering my height and weight.
    I’ve checked my thyroid and everything was/is fine, I’ve made blood test and everything was/is fine. Is genetic, my brother and sisters are as skinny as I am. My sister gave birth to 2 children each and they didn’t gain much weight, and now that the childre have grown up they are still underweight.

  122. Solveig says:

    Ps: I’m quoting myself because I can’t edit my previous comment:
    “My sister gave birth to 2 children each and they didn’t gain much weight, and now that the childre have grown up they are still underweight.”

    It should’ve been:

    My sisterS gave birth to 2 children each, and they (my sisterS) didn’t gain much weight during their pregnancy. Now that their children have grown up and breastfeeding is no more needed, my sisterS are again underweight.

    PPs: Detriotgirl, consindering that you thought the same thought of that genius called thinc about it, maybe it wasn’t so easy to understand the fact that those people who were looking at me like I was an alien, were the ones I talked to and I went out with and clearly thought that I was anorexic. And I was also talking about that woman, on the subway, that looked at me like I was the most unfortunate human being on earth and that thoughtfully asked me if I was strong enough to carry my suitcase.
    I guess it’s my fault when I believe that people are capable of understanding what others say and to replying properly and not in a childish, ignorant and rude way…

  123. original kate says:

    “I think they need to put a higher tax on junk food so obese people can pay for the financial strain they put on the health system. For starters I’d tax the $hit out of Coca-Cola and fast food outlets. ”

    @ chris: thank you! i have been saying this for years. fast food is nothing but fat, salt and grease. we also need to get vending machines and fast food out of school cafeterias. it shocks and saddens me how many fat -and i mean FAT- children i see now, with rolls of fat and triple chins who never exercise and whose parents let them eat at mc donalds or whatever.

  124. Raven says:

    I’m surprised that she’s friends with Karl Lagerfeld. He has made many statements that he can’t stand fat people.

  125. bb says:

    I’d just like to concur with all the people saying that yesterday’s pudgy is today’s ‘healthy’ and yesterday’s normal is today’s ‘too skinny’ and yesterday’s skinny is today’s on-the-brink-of-death-emaciated. I’m 5’8 and about 125lb. On my naturally small build, this is actually quite a lot of ‘meat on my bones’, I have no bones showing; I’ve even got a bit of a belly – yet I can guarantee that most people would label me thin or skinny, and some would even say too skinny. Most people would agree that I could afford to gain a few.

    I was watching some amatuer color films from the early 50′s the other day; just crowds of regular people, and I was shocked to see that had I lived back then, I would have actually been on the slightly plumper side or average, instead of decidedly on the skinny side like I am today.

  126. jc126 says:

    Karl Lagerfeld used to be overweight, so has no business hating fat people. But a lot of formerly fat people do, so I hear. Just trying to distance themselves from the overweight in case they “catch it” again, I suppose.

  127. rundee says:

    she´s one of the greatest musicians and artists of our times.
    (if you´ve seen one of her shows you´d not worry about if and how she works out.)
    and how can you not love her after you´ve seen this:
    http://community.livejournal.com/foto_decadent/1798967.html

  128. CrisL says:

    She’s not obese? On WHAT PLANET? God. One of her thighs is as big as my WAIST. I’d be very suprised if she doesn’t count as morbidly obese. If you carry 10-15 extra pounds, that’s not bad. But that porko is carrying minimum 80-100 lbs over her healthy weight.

    As others said, she may be healthy now, but if she keeps on like this she’ll die of a heart attack in her early 40s after struggling with the adult onset diabetes for ten years or so. I for one won’t miss her!

  129. DetRiotgirl says:

    @Sloveig As I said before, since you are not from this country, I completely understand where you are coming from. Statement gladly retracted!

    I’m sorry if I offended you. But, my knee jerk reaction to that was from a strictly American perspective. I think NYC is generally considered one of the healthier cities in America. And, in my experience as someone who has traveled a lot, NYC has a much smaller obese population than anywhere else I’ve been in the states. So, thinking of you as an American, I just found your statement strange. Most places in this country are heavier than here, so it would be weird to me for you to single out NYC if you lived in this country.

    I’m also sorry if thinc of me’s (and my similar opinion) offended you. But, trust me, 90% of the time New Yorkers are so far into their own personal bubble that they don’t notice anyone else one way or the other. I do a lot of street team marketing here and deal with people all the time. If people will ignore a 20 foot tall monster truck in times square (many will, btw), I think it’s reasonable to assume that a lot of people pretty much ignore everything that isn’t directly affecting their lives. I don’t mean that as an insult to you, or to demean your story, it’s just that my first thought when I read your original comment was “Really? I’ve seen people on the train ignore a man with no legs. They really noticed someone for being skinny?” So, I apologize for the rudeness and vulgarity in the original comment I was agreeing with. But, I still relate to it’s sentiment.

    I’ve spent most of my life being fairly small. I range from very skinny to right around average. I have dealt with some of the things you are describing from some of my larger friends and family, but never on the street. I feel for you about your suitcase story though. I’m sorry you had to deal with that.

    I imagine it is a huge culture shock for Europeans to come here and see all the fat people. I’ve been to 14 of 15 countries, and everywhere I go someone always has to remark “You’re American? Oh, but you’re not fat!”. I do find that statement somewhat tiring and offensive. But, I understand why people say it. America IS the fattest country I’ve ever seen.

  130. kelly says:

    All this is bollocks.

    We are among the most populous and diverse species on the planet.

    Some of us gain and keep weight, others cannot. Some are short, others tall, black, yellow, pink, smart, dumb, healthy, addicted, mad, sane etc etc etc.

    We are all part of nature’s rolling the dice for every new day and environmental circumstance. We manifest as we are due to both genetic and environmental situations far, far beyond our control. Control what you can, for sure, food, activity etc, but accept that much of it is predestined.

    Do not hate yourself because you gain weight when the opportunity or environment presents itself; for the last 10 000 years, you have been thought of as the epitome of beauty and health for this characteristic, and a few generations from now, your fatty descendants will enjoy this acclaim again.

    Dont be smug because you are skinny; in this fat-o-genic environment, you’ve come out on top temporarily. But that doesn’t make you special or superior; it makes you fitted to a particular circumstance. For most of history, you’ve been thought of as thriftless and suboptimal, so enjoy it while you can!

    It is our diversity that defines us, oddly enough. Punishing yourself for your glorious divergence from the person standing next to you is dumb and ungrateful. If you’re conscious enough to perceive difference, you are unfathomably fortunate.

    Stop obsessing over bullsh*t and look at the bigger picture. If you’re so fat you can’t move, stop eating so much. If you’re so thin you can’t think straight, eat more. But everyone else should mind their own business, appreciate difference, stop trying to impose their sh*t on others. We all have enough to worry about without policing someone else’s mass. Duh.

  131. Paul says:

    I think what she’s getting at is that just because you see someone who is fat it doesn’t mean they are pigging out on drive through every day, and there are people who will eat right and exercise and never be skinny. She’s saying that weight is not the only indicator of health and that’s a positive message. People do very unhealthy things to lose weight and heavier people can be healthy. People naturally come in a variety of shapes and sizes.

  132. Sally says:

    *Applauds kelly (poster 129)*

  133. AMirZa says:

    she’s HOT and she’s way talented than lady retardo gaga..

  134. TeeTee says:

    @Felicia,

    Keep up the good work and continue to take care of yourself, you only get one u. :)

  135. Alicia says:

    Oh no! I am sorry Solveig, i really didnt want to make you upset :(
    I am sure you look fabulous and not anorexic, you are a lucky girl if you dont gain weight like the rest of us that struggle to stay skinny all the time
    Dont feel like an alien! most magazines are covered with girls your size
    hugs!

  136. Lushus L. says:

    I kid you not, I was reading this story earlier today and as I was reading the posts, an ambulance pulled up across the street. I’m facing a window so I saw it all. Anyways, I watched to see what was going on and they brought out a girl who is in her twenties and very overweight! I see her smoking outside sometimes. She was conscious so I think she’ll be alright but I couldn’t believe the irony. Just sayin’……..

  137. Tixie says:

    She is not fat, she is morbidly obese and she looks disgusting. Being anorexic isn`t healthy, I agree, but being 100kg overweight is just a coronary waiting to happen. Slim men and women look the best. All of you sayin that Beth looks good are probably as obese as she is.

  138. ViktoryGin says:

    Everyone has made compelling arguments on both sides, so there is not much that I can add to this issue that hasn’t already been previously stated. The one thing that always irks me, however, regarding this particular debate of what constitutes good vs. bad health is my dubiousness about people’s concern over an obese individual’s health.

    Honestly ask yourselves if a person’s health is the first thing that strikes you when you see an obese person walking down the street. Do you immediately think to yourself, “Oh, her cholesterol must be knocking the hell out of 270?” or “I wonder what her resting heart rate is?” I’m willing to buy it from a personal trainer or a nutritionist, but I personally believe that this “health” argument by the vast majority is mere PC jockeying rather than admitting that the obese by current Western standards it not aesthetically appealing.

    I’m growing tired of this argument when it just seems in my opinion to be rather ingenuine and euphemistic in orientation. So, yes…piss and rant about the toll on the healthcare system that the obese place, but do you REALLY care beyond your eyesight and healthcare premiums?

  139. ashleighlauren says:

    @ViktoryGin
    Thank you! People hide behind the health argument because they think it makes them sound caring rather than shallow. I hate that. In fact, I’d rather have someone tell me that they just aren’t attracted to me because of my weight. I get that, attraction is a very personal thing. I’m just sick of people turning it into a moral issue wherein I’m somehow a bad person because I’m fat, and they can say that because they’re “concerned.”

    @Tixie, it’s fine that you consider slim men and women attractive. There are plenty of people who disagree. And yes, some of those people are obese. I think my technical classification under BMI (a hopelessly outdated and inefficient mode of classification FWIW), is overweight although I’m right on the border to obese. However, even when I was thin, I preferred people who would likely fall into the overweight category.

    For more on how much the BMI doesn’t work, I’d suggest everyone check out Kate Harding’s, The BMI Project. It’s a photo slide show of people with their BMI classification. It can be pretty eye opening.

  140. padiddle says:

    @ whoever responded to the thing about overweight people being faster than me in races: no, their not just “muscular” – I’m very aware of what larger muscular people look like. I’m talking about people with visible and significant belly fat. Yet they are still able to run faster than an 8:30 min/mi (which is my usual average) Sally, Kelly, I applaud your statements. It’s impossible to know BDs health just by looking at her, just as you can’t know a thin person’s health by looking at them. I don’t understand why so many people feel a need that they qualify to deem her obese or disgusting because they are a “normal” size – what exactly does “normal” size mean anyway? I know it’s being nitpicky and it’s just semantics, but it implies that being anything but your particular weight is somehow bizarre or not the norm. There are plenty of people 10-20lbs over or underweight who are still normal or eat relatively healthfully. And the argument that all people who are defending Beth’s statement must be fat like her is childish. Just so you know, I’m not fat (5’2″, 118, size 2/4) and I agree with her. I think we need to stop judging people’s health just by looking at them, and learn to accept that people’s health is their own business, unless you are a very close friend or concerned family member.

  141. Steph says:

    @ Crash2GO2

    Gosh where do you live because I live in Los Angeles, CA and there is extreme pressure to weigh less then 120 lbs and if you are over that weight you are considered chubby. (I don’t even work in entertainment or fashion.) I tried really hard to weigh less then 120 lbs but I found that I had to eat significantly less than I should be eating and I had to work out really hard, I am 5’4. Maybe your one of the lucky one’s and are naturally skinny and don’t have to struggle with your weight.

  142. original kate says:

    i am an ex-smoker, and i would get really indignant when people would tell me how unhealthy smoking is. my reply was “well, not everyone who smokes is unhealthy – we don’t all get lung cancer.” by the time i was 30 i was getting winded climbing a flight of stairs, getting bronchitis 2 or 3 times a year (including one that turned into pneumonia), catching every cold/flu that was going around, and my feet were like ice all year round because my circulation was so poor. one night when i was about 32 i woke up with chest pains and was barely able to breathe. that scared the crap out of me and i quit smoking the next day and never looked back. since then all those health problems reversed.

    i think being very overweight is similar, in that it creeps up on you. at first you don’t notice any ill effect but as you age you start getting winded, and developing high blood pressure, and diabetes, etc. by the time you start feeling bad it is so hard to change, so why not try and avoid getting to the point where you wake up in the middle of the night with chest pains? because it WILL happen. like smoking, it may not kill you outright but eventually being very overweight (i’m not talking 20 pounds here) will effect your quality of life.

  143. jeshudas says:

    im a fat guy, and im still can moving everywhere i desire..
    my neighbour is a skinny man, but he’s always laid on his bed..what does it mean?

  144. Moops says:

    @kelly -
    I think I just fell in love with you! :) The comments on this post have been so judgmental, self-congratulatory, and mean-spirited that it almost put me off this site completely. Glad to see someone else here who can put things in perspective.

  145. Migue says:

    she’s a little calf and future COW

  146. Tixie says:

    @ashleighlaure: Vast majority of western world considers slim people attractive, it`s not just me. This applies to women especially. I don`t care about her health, like I stated before, she looks disgusting and is morbidly obese. The BMI is still a valid “tool” to clasify peoples weight category, every doctor will ask you for your BMI. Just becouse fat people don`t like it, it doesn`t mean that BMI doesn`t work. It is scientificaly proved that obesity leads to heart and blood presure problems as well as diabetes and stroke. Carrying 100kg extra of fat is not good.

  147. ashleighlauren says:

    @Tixie,clearly, we aren’t going to agree, but you might want to note that I specifically stated that “it’s fine that you consider slim men and women attractive. There are plenty of people who disagree.” I’m not saying that you don’t have a right to find only slender people attractive. I’m simply pointing out that other people have differing opinions. As for the BMI, there is plenty of evidence that it is not a good tool for determining health. It inaccurately characterizes very muscular people as obese. Additionally, those statistics that everyone cites regarding health issues related to obesity are shockingly similar to the statistics regarding health issues related to yo yo-dieting.

  148. Crash2GO2 says:

    @Steph: I live in South Orange County. I am slightly taller than you @ 5’5″ and I’ve always carried a bit more muscle – never been ‘soft’, so I think that makes me able to carry more weight without showing it. I’m denser – and not just in the head. :D

    Maybe LA is a higher pressure environment because you are that much closer to Hollywood? To be honest, none of the women I know talks about their specific weight, or anything like that – except me when I’m defending myself against accusations ‘not eating’. It’s kind of considered un-PC. Maybe you are hanging out with the wrong kind of people..?

    To the poster who wondered how many were really concerned for the health of obese people – I can tell you it alarms me when I hear someone huffing and puffing just walking slowly down the street. I imagine how hard their heart is working, and what a strain all the weight is on their joints as I watch them move. But I was a fitness instructor for many years, so I’m attuned to such things. I can’t speak for others, but it’s difficult for me to imagine that anyone with a simple working knowledge of how the human body functions wouldn’t be similarly affected.

  149. ashleighlauren says:

    @crash2go2
    Although I’m not the original poster who mentioned whether the fat hatred is really a concern about health rather than asthetics, I wanted to take a moment to respond to your post. I exercise regularly, and I can pound away on the elliptical (one of my favorite things) or swim, for quite some time at a decent clip. I am in good shape, not just for a fat person but for a person. However, I’m also asthmatic. I’ve had asthma since childhood, when I was quite thin, so it isn’t weight-related. My asthma is pretty heavily based on weather and allergies, so there are times when I get winded going up the stairs because I’m having a wheezy day.

    I’m responding to your comment because I get the feeling from reading your comment that you are genuinely concerned. So, although I in no way embody the entire fat community, I wanted to respond to you so that you could maybe see another perspective. The automatic assumption that I am not in good shape is really hurtful, especially because I am not naturally athletic and have some traumatic memories related to gym class. I’ve worked really really hard to get to the point where I enjoy exercise and feel comfortable (most of the time) walking into a gym.

    However, and I don’t think I’ve previously stated this on this particular thread, it doesn’t really matter if someone is healthy or unhealthy. People are people, and they deserve to be treated with basic dignity and respect, regardless of body type. This is not specific to anything that you said, but I think it’s an important reminder. There is this belief in the US that it is okay to shame people because of their bodies in the name of health. It’s ineffective, and I think it probably leads to a lot less healthy behavior just because what’s the point? For a huge group of people (no pun intended) whose bodies are not going to be majorly and permanently influenced by calories or exercise, this idea that health is only available at a size 2 (or 8 or 10 or whatever the arbitrary size is that we want to assign) means that if you can’t be that size (either too big or too small), what’s the point of trying?

    And as for the idea that people’s bodies can change… 95% of people who diet (or do a lifestyle change) do not permanently keep the weight off. Within 5 years, all but 5% of people who lose a significant amount of weight will regain some if not all (in many cases more) of it. I realize some of this is due to habits, but I think that at least some of it can be attributed to the idea that we have set points that our bodies try to stick to. I personally believe we can alter our set points within a window (it appears to be about 30 lbs for me) by exercise and eating. Even when I’m at my lightest, I’m still fat by most people’s standards. And that’s okay.

    Again @Crash2go2, I don’t know if you still do fitness type work, but I’d really recommend that you look into the Health at Any Size philosophy. It could be really helpful to your clientele. I know that it has been life changing for me.

  150. Jolie says:

    You kids are CRAZY. 5’5″ and 118lbs is the norm? Every BMI I’ve seen; says 125-150 for normal to slightly overweight. 118lbs is more normal for someone around 5’3 or 5’4. My mother is about half an inch taller than me, and she lost weight and got to 125lbs, and she looked something like a prepubescent boy, rail thin and lacking breasts.

    Saying that though. Everyone is different. I weighed 170lbs at five five, and my doctors told me that was perfect, (Considering I was about 50lbs heavier before)a weight that a lot of people would consider “Obese”.

  151. ULYANA says:

    it’s ok to be fat totally! but to have a bad taste is not too attractive. well she is both fat and has a bad taste. some overweight people look wonderful only because they make right choices of clothing and make-up. good luck to her

  152. shakesfirst says:

    She is kinda right. To skinny can be unhealthy, and fat is not necessarily unhealthy. But body shape is the determining factor in that. If you are larger because you are to lazy to exercise that will kill ya, if you are to thin cause of starvation that will kill ya. I know I am over simplifying things, but the psychology of eating disorders is not the point I am trying to make. Magda Szubanski is a classic case of someone being healthy for there body shape, and well done too, she looks great. Beth Ditto is obese plain and simple. I do not subscribe to this thin is always beautiful myth, but obese can never be attractive.

  153. Disa says:

    @Jolie 5’5″ and 118# is a BMI of 19.6. Perfectly normal.

    It always strikes me as funny when people complain about how the BMI is “one-size-fits-all” or how “not everyone fits into that narrow range.” The acceptable range of weights for someone who is 5’5″ tall is 111# to 149#. The top weight in the healthy range is 34% higher than the bottom weight in the healthy range.

  154. Andrew says:

    Number of tests showed that garlic and onions able to reduce cholesterol, lower blood pressure and the effect of flu. Different studies reported that both onions and garlic in the diet lowering blood cholesterol rates. Studies the United States have generated the same results. Dr. Truswell, professor at the Queen Elizabeth College of London University, ongoing research by feeding human high-fat foods with and without onions. He validated that blood platelets stuck together much faster after the no-onion food, when the impact was reduced when onions were taken. Platelets are a conjunction in the blood, that is an important aid in coagulation. However when they “fail”, they make clots which could lead to thromboses in the arteries to the heart and brain, which can lead to the strokes and heart attacks. Dr. Truswell is sure that by just taking onions in the diet, the case of having a stroke or heart attack are decreased.