Research, Journals, Reviews, etc.
SHAPE® Center RI and the body acceptance movement is rich in evidence that backs up the value of a weight-neutral approach for ALL size bodies. This approach is applicable to healthcare, policy, workplace, schools, relationships, wellness programs, governing bodies, and many other places. Feel free to peruse published research, articles, reviews, journals, acedemic etc.
Please read with caution, some/most research is will have triggering information, harmful language, and anti-fat bias.
Obesity trends happened across several groups at the same time in the last 70's making it highly unlikely this is a co-occuring will-power issue. What is sorely needed is political advocacy and action to disrupt entrenched cycles that maintain poverty and prevent ready access to healthy choices.
2018 The Lancet Journal
This review evaluates and defines two methods of working within patient care and public health: the weight-normative approach and the weight-inclusive approach. Data reveal that the weight-normative approach is not effective for most people and that a weight-inclusive approach is is effective for improving physical (e.g., blood pressure), behavioral (e.g., binge eating), and psychological (e.g., depression) indices, as well as acceptability of public health messages. Therefore, the weight-inclusive approach upholds nonmaleficience and beneficience, whereas the weight-normative approach does not.
2014 - Journal of Obesity
A counter intuitive finding is that one of the strongest predictors of weight gain is engagement in weight loss dieting, regardless of the actual body weight of the dieter. The claim that life expectancy is reduced as a direct result of body weight higher than the ‘normal weight’ BMI category is not supported by large epidemiological studies.
2018 - SAGE
Obesity stigma involves actions against people with obesity that can cause exclusion and marginalization, and lead to inequities– for example, when people with obesity do not receive adequate health care or when they are discriminated against in the workplace or in educational settings.
This brief was prepared for the WHO Regional Office for Europe
Experiencing weight stigma contributes to depression, anxiety, and suicidality. Weight stigma in healthcare and physical activity settings impedes access to these settings, leading to their avoidance. Weight stigma also creates the conditions that render people vulnerable to exploitative marketing tactics.
Health policies routinely emphasize weight loss as a target for health promotion. These policies rest upon the assumptions: (1) that higher body weight equals poorer health, (2) that long-term weight loss is widely achievable, and (3) that weight loss results in consistent improvements in physical health. Our review of the literature suggests that these three assumptions underlying the current weight- focused approach are not supported empirically. Complicating this further are the misguided assumptions (4) that weight stigma (i.e., pervasive social devaluation and denigration of higher weight individuals) promotes weight loss and (5) recognizing that one is “overweight” is necessary to spur health-promoting behaviors. We highlight throughout how these assumptions have manifested in current policies and offer suggestions for alternative approaches to health promotion. We conclude by advocating for the broad adoption of a weight-inclusive approach to health policy.
This study provides preliminary evidence that weight stigma is linked to several poor health behaviors, which may impact physical health.
This report was commissioned to examine the intersections of identity and experience amongst fat-identified people. This report provides an analysis and evaluation of the current state of fat folks in the context of interlocking systems of antiblack oppression.
This paper evaluates the evidence and rationale that justifies shifting the health care paradigm from a conventional weight focus to HAES.
In addition to suicidality, according to a recent review by Pearl and Puhl , weight bias internalization is associated with a number of mental and physical health outcomes including depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, poor body image, disordered eating, emotion dysregulation, perceived stress, maladaptive coping, psychological distress, low quality of life, and cardiometabolic risk.