Welcome to Debra’s Just Maintaining!
Since we are a disparate community with two primary groups, weight-loss maintainers and size acceptance proponents, it is easy to see how something said by one may rub another wrong. Actually, what is amazing is how we are on the same basic pages.
We agree with the following assumptions:
- Fat people, on average, are as smart and well informed as naturally trim people and people who are intentionally weight reduced.
- Diet culture has disappointed all of us, repeatedly.
- Science is incomplete and confusing, rife with arrogance and bias, and often does not advance health or well being, especially with regard to human body weight.
- The medical profession, which relies on science and is influenced by diet culture, does not give fat people equal regard to trim people. Moreover, it has no idea what to do with body weight as it fits into the overall health picture, given its disease model, which promotes problem solving and fixing broken things, rather than nuanced lifetime strategies for dealing with issues that are not clearly broken.
- Public policy has also been influenced negatively by incomplete and biased science, as well as diet culture.
This site is a space where discussion is free but safe. Both of the primary communities here are tender and vulnerable. Social pressure to lose weight (always assumed to be permanent) has created enormous tension for all of us. Fat people who embrace their size are told they are in denial, lazy or ignorant. Weight-loss maintainers are lauded for a “healthy” lifestyle that they dare not question or critique. Both groups operate in a society that is happy with insufficient information and a glut of unhelpful opinions. We must challenge the cultural mythology that makes all of us miserable, within the following boundaries:
- It is always okay to challenge Debra, the convener. I am the author of this blog. I’m putting my ideas out there for critical examination.
- It is always okay to challenge cultural mythology from any public medium: magazines, blogs, etc.
- It is always okay to challenge scientists – their conflicts of interest, their methodology, their conclusions, their assumptions. Scientists are in the field to advance our knowledge, and if they make a bad call, we need to call them on it.
- It is always okay to challenge the medical field. Our health may depend on it. When we see the dietary equivalent of bloodletting, for example, let’s go after it.
- It is always okay to challenge public policy that advances weight bias in place of good health practices.
- It is okay to correct one another on facts, or present opposing evidence, but opinions are to be handled with care.
- The site convener (Debra) may limit the number of comments from any one poster or ban posters if they do not respect site rules.