Comedian Nicole Arbour’s video ‘Dear Fat People’ went viral this monthIn the 6-minute clip, she ranted that obese people need to be fat-shamed But Dr Eric Robinson, a psychologist, argues fat-shaming ‘doesn’t work’ Says rather than motivating people to lose weight, it triggers depression By Eric Robinson For The Conversation.
Dr Eric Robinson, a psychologist specialising in obesity at the University of Liverpool, says fat-shaming does not motivate people to lose weight.
Here, writing for The Conversation, he explains how it actually does ‘quite the opposite’…. An online video of a self-described comedian criticising obese people and actively endorsing the use of ‘fat shaming’ to scare people into losing weight has recently gone viral.
At present, the evidence points very clearly in one direction: fat shaming or making people feel bad about their weight does not motivate successful weight loss or promote healthy changes to a person’s lifestyle.
Ms Arbour explains that she is not talking about people who have a ‘little cushion for the pushing’ or people with specific health conditions, but rather the ’35 per cent of North Americans who are obese’.
My research team recently tested the hypothesis that people who are conscious about the fact that they are overweight might be more motivated to lose weight.
The people who went on to gain the most weight in our research were actually those who were already conscious that they were ‘overweight’.
Regardless of whether fat shaming is a good or bad thing for weight management, we also now know that people who feel shamed and discriminated against because of their weight are far more likely to develop mental health conditions, including eating disorders and depression.