Terrific questions, outstanding answers

You can't spend much time in the eating disorder world without confronting the weight loss industry. I used to duck the issue, because I don't believe eating disorders are a fear of fat or "obesity."

But the truth is, those of us caring for people with eating disorders have a responsibility to know the facts on weight and health - and many of us don't. I sure have had to give up some antiquated ideas.

This 10-question interview with Gina Kolata, author of "Rethinking Thin" is energy-dense and nonsense-free. Great interview questions, and outstanding answers.


  1. Thanks for the kind words. All kudos to Gina for being so agreeable and all around wonderful.

    I don't think EDs, at their heart, are about a fear of fat or obesity, either. EDs are rarely about food and weight, at all, actually. But the sad fact is, many an eating disorder starts out as a simple diet - which then develops into an ED. That's why I focus so much on fat acceptance and the inanity of dieting on my site.

  2. Gina Kolata is just awesome...she is such a voice of sanity in an insane world.

    I too don't think EDs are really about weight/media etc., but the cultural attitudes about body size are definitely a contributing/complicating factor. Eating disorder incidence has increased right along with the obesity epidemic hysteria, and I don't think it's a coincidence. I am NOT saying that it's the cause--far from it. But I do think that the fact that it leads to dieting behavior is significant--for those who are vulnerable, any kind of food restriction is the first step down a slippery slope. Early signs of EDs get missed or even PRAISED because it seems so "normal." Even full-blown EDs get reinforced b/c there's the insane notion that somehow being ridiculously thin (even by starving yourself!) is a sign of self-control. And then recovery is made all the more difficult when the distortions engendered by the ED are reinforced by the culture.

    Anyway, sorry for ranting, but the whole "obesity epidemic" panic and the flimsy evidence on which it is built is a HUGE pet peeve (a mild way of putting it!) of mine. It's not making anyone healthier--just crazier.


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