"Dieting is poison" - the anti-diet movement gains ground

Originally published at: "Dieting is poison" – the anti-diet movement gains ground | Boing Boing


Agree but with the stipulation that untreated compulsive overeating is also a “diet fad.”

People would do well to detox from diet culture on the whole though.


most people’s perception of dieting, while not necessarily always poison, isn’t always healthy. but neither is eating the standard american diet.

it isn’t exactly easy to eat an actual balanced diet in today’s world with sacrificing other activities. i think that and food deserts are where the majority of the problems lie.


You need to do two diets at once.

Otherwise, you don’t get enough to eat.


The whole perception of fatness in America is so biased it is poisonous. Thinness is seen as a moral good, even thought most thin people do very little to remain thin. The “science” behind most assumptions of weight gain was one study that ignored the subjects who gained weight even on very restricted diets. Instead of seeing weight as a function of metabolism it’s seen as a result of personal choices.
It doesn’t matter why I go to see a doctor, every one of them tells me I’m fat, as if I hand somehow not noticed. When I talked to my SIL, a nurse practitioner, about how much I hated it, her reply was “well, if we get one person to loose weight, that’s good!” I could not convince her that people end up not going to seek treatment because they are so tired of being seen only as “the fat one”.
Maintenance Phase is a great podcast about all of this.


Healthy food choices also tend to be more expensive. It costs a lot of time and money to maintain a “healthy lifestyle” as advertised.


I think that’s a feature not a bug, in that, so much of our “diet culture” like so much of our “culture” is just a marketing gimmick at scale. We’re dying for the bottom line on this just like so many other things.


I meant just regular fresh fruit and vegetables, but that too, for sure.


And then there is the whole “clean eating” thing, which feeds into a slew of eating disorders.
Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.


Goddamn this got my day started right… so eating healthy and exercising is bad somehow. Nice. I’m down.

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It also doesn’t help that some of our perception of what is “healthy” is very much not. I have two mothers with disordered eating habits and it sucks watching them get older. Talk to mine about it and it’s like yeah we’ve been hammered with disinformation, propaganda, marketing, and “conventional wisdom” for so long that all of it is a meaningless drone like a mold sucking up the joy of food before it even touches our lips.

Even if you can easily read what it says on the label we have to step back a minute and admit that often most of what we have learned in order to interpret that information is… false.

This leaves the door wide open for opportunists, cultists, snake oil salesmen, social media campaigns, and marketing majors… oh yeah and pharmaceutical companies.

The things that are killing us outright are never blamed but the things we may eat or have eaten are ruthlessly scrutinized. How many calories, what macros, is fruit sugar, is eating fruit even that good for you, does saturated fat actually cause heart attacks. When I was a kid people still believed smoking and drinking were “healthy” so long as they were done in “moderation” which of course means whatever anyone wants it to mean.

Uncle went on restrictive diets after his second heart attack again and died of cardiac related dementia like 10 years later. Did it help? I can’t honestly say but damn he was miserable and I guess that’s what matters!

My husband who works out all the damned time and is relatively thin got a script for statins (no further explanation of how they should be taken or discussion of his workouts or diet) after one visit with a doc in the box on marginally high ldl. He’s not taking statins and there’s a whole world of things he can do before they are necessary as he’s active and in his thirties and statins may rob him of everything he actually likes doing.

US is a privileged country but we’re all in a bad place when it comes to nutrition, diet, science, medicine, and corporate profits in healthcare and food.


My previous doc actually told me that every man should start taking statins at 40 regardless. My cholesterol level was barely elevated at 150 and after a month on Lipitor it dropped to something like 25 - dangerously low. I was woozy, weak and foggy all the time so I stopped taking it. My doc got really pissed and we had a heated argument in the exam room. Needless to say I dropped him and never went back.


Absolutely not. But your feelings about why and how some people become fat and stay fat might be based on bad information. And this isn’t about your choices.
Weight is seen as a matter of personal choices, and changing those choices will end up with a thin person. Alas, weight is a metabolic function and we don’t know as much much as we like to assume about that system functions. If weight gain had been examined as a result of a metabolic misfiring rather than a moral failure there might be actual, successful methods of dealing with it.


re diets: It doesn’t help that they put a little sugar (or more often corn syrup) in EVERYTHING, including stuff that doesn’t need sweetners. Sure, it tastes a little better, tests better in taste tests, that’s why they do it. But all the extra calories and sugar here and there add up.


Exercise seems to be important for people’s health, but it should be less emphasized as a means of losing weight.
Whether or not your losing weight, or even gaining weight while your exercising, you seem to live longer and be happier and healthy if you are exercising. We should probably be emphasizing doing the exercise that brings you more enjoyment, as that is more sustainable, than the one that brings you more weight loss.


This is a bit extreme, but not too far from the current science on this. It’s well accepted now that high cholesterol is about 95% genetic and most older adults (especially men) will end up on a statin at some point.

This should not be used by anyone as an excuse to say what you eat never matters, as the linked article in the OP seems to be saying. You absolutely should minimize trans fats, for example. Basic nutrition advice (balanced diet, mostly plants, as others have said) hasn’t changed in decades. People want to create complicated stories about carbs and whatever to justify what they eat, but the actual scientific consensus on nutrition remains unchanged.


Depends sometimes for flavor, but often as not as a preservative, sugar makes things last longer,


The advent of new drugs like Ozempic will probably enhance the class divide of body size; they’re very expensive and presumably will have to be used for the rest of the “dieter’s” life to maintain the weight loss.


I think that when pharmaceutical companies suggest that “established science” means half the population should be on these drugs from the minute they enter adulthood it should be very alarming and heavily questioned for at least another generation or two of human lives.

“established science” has gotten plenty of us killed.

I have nothing else to say on it, but that I do not trust “established science” on a drug that was invented less than 40 years ago, nor do I trust the opinion of people who do not see that as a big ass red flag.


Also makes you permanently nauseous but soooo worth it! Who cares how you feel though, so long as you look thin. Skinny suburban moms like “who cares I’m hungover anyway!”

A+ very healthy.