Body Respect

What Conventional Health Books Get Wrong, Leave Out, and Just Plain Fail to Understand About Weight
Narrated by: Celeste Oliva
Length: 4 hrs and 51 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (71 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Mainstream health science has let you down. Weight loss is not the key to health, diet and exercise are not effective weight-loss strategies, and fatness is not a death sentence.  

You've heard it before: There's a global health crisis, and unless we make some changes, we're in trouble. That much is true - but the epidemic is not obesity. The real crisis lies in the toxic stigma placed on certain bodies and the impact of living with inequality - not the numbers on a scale. 

In a mad dash to shrink our bodies, many of us get so caught up in searching for the perfect diet, exercise program, or surgical technique that we lose sight of our original goal: improved health and well-being. Popular methods for weight loss don't get us there and lead many people to feel like failures when they can't match unattainable body standards. It's time for a cease-fire in the war against obesity.  

Dr. Linda Bacon and Dr. Lucy Aphramor's Body Respect debunks common myths about weight, including the misconceptions that BMI can accurately measure health, that fatness necessarily leads to disease, and that dieting will improve health. They also help make sense of how poverty and oppression - such as racism, homophobia, and classism - affect life opportunity, self-worth, and even influence metabolism.  

Body insecurity is rampant, and it doesn't have to be. It's time to overcome our culture's shame and distress about weight, to get real about inequalities and health, and to show every body respect.

©2014 Linda Bacon, PhD, and Lucy Aphramor, PhD, RD (P)2018 Tantor
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    5 out of 5 stars

An Important lesson to all health professionals

As someone who works in healthcare and hears the word “overweight” and “obesity” be tossed around a lot it’s very rare to hear a complete dissection of what these terms mean and how this impacts what we already know from lived experience from people living in larger bodies going on diets and not reaching the goal that they’ve been taught to strive for- long-term weight loss. I love how it gives the science/medical explanation of how this Weight normative paradigm is problematic and can do harm but then also expanded to a larger discussion on social justice respect and compassion.

4 people found this helpful

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Mixed

This book has many important messages, primarily in two categories: (1) exposing the flawed science about weight and food, and (2) presenting a political context in which the “weight” lies flourish. Unfortunately, I found the book to have a conflicting message - an individual, self-help approach. This “accept yourself” approach can be harmful, as it is likely to be ineffective, and thus reinforces a sense of failure.
I am a trauma therapist. Intellectual, cognitive approaches do not reach the somatic, non-verbal, psycho-bio-neurological-political-intersectional containers of trauma that perpetuate the automatic trauma filters and responses. Our society is traumatogenic in relation to eating, weight, appearance. Why? It feeds unconsciousness. It feeds a sense of individualized failure. This failure feeds the Oligarchic structures that keep us separated and stuck instead of finding collective consciousness and true empowerment. This book hints at second-order change, but does not fulfill its promise. Instead it reverts to a “first-order” game of checkers, in which the moves are limited and someone always loses. We need to get off the checkers board.
I would use information provided in this book - the science and the contextual, intersectional perspective - as a resource. However I could not, in good conscience, recommend this book to someone who is in severe pain and suffering about their weight and size.
Still, I applaud and greatly thank the authors for heading in this direction! A lot of hard work went into this book and it does provide a foundation and a stepping stone for further work.
Do not discard this book as a resource, however read it with a few grains of salt, so to speak.

3 people found this helpful

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Excellent Book

Outstanding analysis on the intersection between diet culture and matters of social justice. Worth the quick listen!

1 person found this helpful

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Eye Opening and Profound

I can't stop talking about this book to my friends and coworkers. The authors cite numerous studies of which I followed up on several. The cases I looked in to were, from what I can tell, well documented, peer reviewed and did not seem skewed towards or away from an outcome.

The authors lay out a compelling case for the H.A.E.S movement and every fat person should be armed with at least some of this information before going to a doctor.

HIGHLY RECOMMEND

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Read This

Quite simply the best and holistic book I have ever read in regards to wellness EVER!

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  • SarahD
  • 12-18-18

Love the message, not executed well as an audiobook

I consider myself a HAES activist and this instalment has some interesting new material. However, I wish I had got it in book form as it doesn’t work well as an audiobook.
This is an emotive subject which was spoiled a bit by being read by a professional voice over artist. It lacked emotion, good intonation and made the subject more dry than it actually is. I would’ve loved to have heard it read by the authors, I think it would’ve been a totally different experience.
The other frustrating part is that it often makes important claims without sources. I’m guessing that in the book, these sources and research are at the back in an index. The audiobook would have been so much more useful to me had this information been included as each bit of research was presented. This makes it difficult for me to use this information in my work.
In conclusion, buy the book and skip the audio.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 04-28-20

Amazing!

This book is great if you want to learn the science behind HAES, diet culture, intuitive eating and joyful movement! Highly recommend to anyone and everyone.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 07-12-19

not read by Celeste Oliva?

This sounds like a text to speech app read it; it's unbearable to listen to.

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  • Gennie
  • 06-03-20

Very helpful

Insightful and informative look into diet culture and health. Strives to free the reader from the shackles of unrealistic body standards and health myths, while supporting their mental and physical health as the work towards intuitive eating and positive health behaviours, free from stigma and diet mentality.