Weight loss is kiiiiind of a hot topic around here. Every time I post about my 90 day journey, or when I rant about celebs being judged for losing weight, the discussion about my stance on weight loss gets a little heated.
Don’t get me wrong, a lot of the feedback is positive. But some call me out as a hypocrite and it feels like words are being put into my mouth.
So that made me wonder… is the body positivity movement causing a “shameful” vibe around weight loss?
As always, I never want my opinion to seem hypocritical or muddy. So I think it’s time we get on the same page about my views on weight loss.
What body positivity means to me
Let’s start with body positivity. This movement and what it means has always been kind of confusing to me. What I’ve learned is that everyone has their own interpretation of what it means, and that’s okay! So here’s mine:
To me, body positivity is a huge piece of self-love. It’s…
- …looking in the mirror without picking yourself apart
- …paying attention to your body and allowing yourself to be proud of everything it can do
- …constantly evolving and not feeling like you have to accept or feel “stuck” with who you are
Most importantly, body positivity is NOT letting how you look rule your self-worth.
My feelings about weight loss
So what about weight loss? It’s confusing to me that people are expected to explain WHY they want to lose weight, or feel ashamed for desiring weight loss in the first place. It bothers me because…
No, weight loss isn’t always healthy. But it can be.
I understand that sometimes weight loss can be a red flag of something deeper and negative going on. From mental health problems, to physical health problems, to drug addiction, I know that losing weight isn’t something that always needs to be celebrated.
But we seem to be forgetting that when it’s done in an intentional, healthy way, weight loss DOES improve health. It can make our heart and lungs healthier. It can improve our mental health. It can decrease our risk for disease.
Wanting to lose weight is a PERSONAL decision.
And no one should feel ashamed for wanting to work on their body. Wanting to lose weight doesn’t mean you hate your body OR that you’re anti-body positive.
To me, it all comes down to your mindset and the way you’re treating your body. Your “why” is what matters. If you want to work on your health and improve your body for the right reasons, then I think that is ALWAYS a positive thing.
Plus, we all know the diet mentality is a hard one to shake. So if someone manages to work through that and lose weight in a healthy, body-loving mindset, why are we still shaming them?
Setting a weight loss goal is okay too.
When I set out on my 90-day journey, people said my specific weight and measurement goals were promoting eating disorders and negativity. They said it was unhealthy. Again, I was called a hypocrite.
But here’s the thing. Setting a weight loss goal is okay. I’m a goal-oriented person. Having that number in mind motivated me. It didn’t rule my journey. I didn’t obsess over the number on the scale. I used it to adjust my diet along the way.
And people really fixated on this goal, instead of my long list of other more important goals. I wanted to improve my body and mind in several ways. Weight loss didn’t dictate how “successful” that journey would be.
Basically, YES! It’s okay to want to lose weight if you do it in a healthy way.
The problem is when people obsess over weight loss, they might get frustrated because no matter how intense their efforts are, they still don’t look like a certain celebrity. And then they’re angry at their body and might move on to more drastic measures. This is when it’s not okay.
As a side note, we need to remember that the people we see on TV, magazines, and especially social media… it’s not always real. Many people have a professional team of hair, makeup, and stylists on standby to give them that all-natural, glowy look. And even if we don’t want to believe it, a lot of pictures are manufactured to look perfect.
And this is why you just need to focus on you. No one knows your body and its needs better than you do.
Let’s stop making assumptions about others who want to lose weight. It’s okay to have different interpretations of body positivity, but being judgy and negative doesn’t help anyone.
What’s most important to me is that we all support each other!