Sunday, November 23, 2008

Blobs of Fake Fat

Doctors in the UK are getting plastic models of fat blobs to show their patients. (Yes, seriously).

When I was 10 or so, I recall my family doctor showing me one of these plastic models. It was very hurtful. I really don't understand how the message can be anything other than "This is disgusting. This is part of you. Thus, you are disgusting." I already wanted to lose weight; it had been my New Year's Resolution for years, and part of my daily life for even longer. This experience just added more shame and more pain to being a fat child.

Experiences like these with doctors are a big part of why I chose to study medicine. There are better ways to motivate people, and better ways to promote health. One of my dreams is to one day open a multidisciplinary primary care health clinic based around Health at Every Size principles. Fake fat won't be allowed on the premises. :-)


sannanina said...

Fat blobs, really? Well, let's see... everything else that happens to be inside the human body looks of course totally esthetically pleasing, particularly when viewed out of context, right? (And it naturally smells like rose petals, too.)

I never dissected animals in high school, but I had to dissect several of them in one of my biology lab courses at college. I also watched two autopsies as a (voluntary) part of the same course. Although I did not like the fact that animals had been killed just so I could take them apart, both, dissecting animals and watching the autopsies was very interesting. However, if I wouldn't have been so fascinated by it it also would have been pretty damn disgusting.

Anonymous said...

But you know what, fake fat blobs with little smiley-faces Sharpeed on might make really nice paper weights! Or would be good to pelt at fat-hating stand-up comics! Just a thought!

(Or else it's 3:47 in the morning and I am just stupid.)

Anonymous said...
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chartreuse said...

LOL! Perhaps I'll have to think about whether to keep some of those fake fat blobs around after all...

RDslimdown said...

The 5 pound blob seems huge. I wish losing 5 pounds really made that much difference, but usually it's not all fat that I lose.

Nic said...

Hi. I am writing to let you know there is an excellent anatomy class that deals with fat in an accepting and educational way. The instructor's name is Gil Hedley He loves superficial fascia (adipose tissue) and loves teaching people about it with respect. Way more educational than blobs of stupid fake fat. Here is a wonderful article he wrote:

And an interview with him on youtube about his anatomy class:

Way to go! I'm so happy you are doing this!

Nicole Bliss

Cat said...


What country do you live in? I live in Canada and I am a grad student in public policy right now. In the fall I am going to begin my thesis and I have a strong interest on doing it on something related to HAES and curriculum development- either in med school or dietetics.

This issue is of personal significance for me after battling an eating disorder for the last decade+ and I have found the concept of HAES to be fundamental to my recovery process.

The current state of fat discrimination and stereotypes in our society sickens me, and I know first hand the kind of self esteem damage those messages inflict.

So, anyways, I guess my question for you is do you have any ideas for me, or resources to which to direct me?


ps- great blog:)