Monday, 27 October 2014

The Pleasure Comes from the Functioning of your Body, not the Food

This clever gag succinctly summarises what's in the back of my mind, whenever people insist they "use" food "like a drug" to "self soothe" or comfort themselves.
It's our instinct to manoeuvre ourselves into a position of control even if that means after the fact. We will at times cop to anything but lack of control. Sometimes cluelessness can lead to the truth. I discovered long ago that I was just about the only person I'd ever heard of that knew, I did not enjoy eating when I had a hyperphagic disorder.

Anorexic-worshipping, fat hating ED professionals will tell you the greatest problem fat people with ED's have is our purportedly tremendous shame about eating in public. That's like saying the haystacks problem is that frond of hay.

A better sign of hyperphagia is the same as anorexics the need to seem in CONTROL.

This is hard to spot, because fat people are defined as out of control and thin people with anorexia so totally in control that....they suffer from too much of a good thing.

Despite anorexics being able to say that they heart food. It seems to be taboo for a fat person to say that they have an excess of hunger yet don't enjoy eating. To be fair, the former point disappears in the casting of being fat as an ED.

The first time I let this slip to a group of people years ago, feeling embarrassed that I was doing a lot of something I didn't enjoy, one of them, a slender blonde got so hysterical-no exaggeration-I was moved to withdraw what I'd said. She literally started shouting, that I did enjoy it I did-meaning me- louder and louder.

I was alarmed. Weirder still,  No one said anything about this performance.

As is the case, fat people feel responsible for slim people's distress around weight and surrounding matters and in those days I did too. Oh the irony. Here I was being honest and I was forced to deny by someone else. Actually, now I think of it, isn't that the norm for fat people?

Given so much experience of erasure and silencing, I'm not keen to implying people are not properly perceiving their own experience. One should tread carefully. Nor am I seeking to extrapolate unthinkingly from my own experience as some kind of universal template.  But, I simply am not convinced that food can be 'used' in this way. It seems borrowed from alcohol, like the term "binge eating." We can all misinterpret our own experience, sometimes wildly so.

That's also taboo- especially if you're middle/upper class. Obviously common people don't know shit about themselves until informed by these enlightened folk.

The terms we use to express our experience are a translation from our internal flux of sensory data. We are not always best placed to find the right match, tough as that is to say. Remember, most fat people have dieted, seen the results and behaved as if that meant they hadn't dieted.

Our experience is filtered and at times distorted by our accepted beliefs.

The purpose of eating is to provide our bodies with the energy our bodily processes need to keep functioning properly. This also has the effect of raising our mood, which also requires some energy. Think of how exhaustion can tend to curtail emotional expressiveness.

Pleasure is part of the successful functioning of the eating process, often rising with satiety. It's a sign that the process is going smoothly. It's also in what surrounds that process. The reason I didn't enjoy eating was, I was in a chronic state of low mood, that lowered the amount of pleasure I felt in general, it was most pronounced in the way I felt whilst eating. It made eating feel purely mechanical, compulsive. Yet I was more drawn to eating than I am now that my ability to enjoy eating returned. Indeed, that was the sign that I was getting over it.

Food has nothing in it that intoxicates, unless there's something wrong with it or its alcohol, which is what gives people drug "highs" and can ultimately cause addiction in those susceptible to it. There is no addiction without intoxication. Food can give you energy, a desire to eat can be provoked by some kind of drain on your energy, but its at best supportive to the functioning of your body.

Compulsion is something else.

Saturday, 25 October 2014

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy

My first response when I heard CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) was finally being waved around in conjunction with "weight management" was this should be good. Won't this expose the practice of turning of fat people's mind against themselves? [The 'obesity' construct starts its mindwarping with "child obesity" mess.]

Given the purpose of fat phobia has been to make being fat feel so bad that this unease either produces dis-ease or feels like it. The use of CBT and the like would surely expose that by turning it around? The theory behind this to provide explanation as to why diet's fail. Fat people's fatty tristesse. Why're ya sad fatso? Becasuse of my fat gut *sob.* Why d'ya have a fat gut? Because I'm sad. Neat isn't it? So, if fat people's a-hem.... mental health is improved-diets will stop failing.

Don't whatever you do ask how this affects metabolic function, after all that would technically be a scientific breakthrough.  It's the usual 'obesity' cult improvisation. They study afterward. Hey that reverses the clinical trial pathway.

I wonder if anyone's been given an award for this innovation?

Putting it bluntly, the kind of things CBT exists to combat were the techniques employed surreptitiously, to turn 'obesity' into a draining imposture. Goes something like this;

"Negative" Behaviour Cycle
Instead of the "everyone doesn't like me" it's you are disease, not a disease, the disease. That tends to produce "distortions", i.e it sets up a negative mindset. You can learn to interrupt and challenge this process, difficult though that can be (to the point where others define this kind of pattern as "illness.")

Buuuut, when the definition of you is producing it, that can become a life sentence until that [definition] is removed. 

Less sophisticated seeming societies would refer to this kind of shit as spell casting, bad magic etc., Basically through a set of culturally relevant mindwarps, you get people to mess themselves up, then claim that resultant badness/evil i.e. 'obesity' or less formally, "fat logic" is emanating from within them. Technically, a lawyer might argue that's not wholly incorrect [yes that's a double negative, enjoy.] Often the "treatments"required to expel this malevolence are quite vigourous, shall we say.

Anyway, let's see, here are ten cognitive distortions- negative expectations and beliefs that dominate your overall perceptions. How many of them will seem familiar?

1. Mental Filter- Sole focus on the worst possibilities and aspects of a situation filtering out any positives, i.e. the "obesity"construct.

2. Disqualifying the positive- Explains itself really. Any positives don't count.

3. All or Nothing Thinking-Things are either one thing or t'other, slim people are good fat people are bad, any deviation is "denial."

4. Overgeneralization-One example is universal. i.e. One person losing any amount of weight for any length of time, makes fatness "preventable."

5. Jumping to Conclusions- Events cue your pre-formed belief. Fat people are eating disordered. So fat people being enthusiastic about food signals, this eating disorder or the current craze "food addiction."

6. Catastrophization-Maximize negativity, i.e. An observation that either end of the spectrum of any trait, height, weight etc., has higher overall mortality than in between, becomes: Fat kills!!!!

7. Should's and Ought's- Please, you should be slim, you ought be on a diet. You should do whatever you're told, diet's ought to work. 

8. Personalization- Feeling to blame for what is partially or wholly outside your control. Fat people's over-responsibility feeling being fat is our fault and so's the failure of dieting, mind you, we're told that. [Also associated with those who have to look after adults from a young age.]

9. Emotional Reasoning- This is a doozy, basically the idea that because you feel something, it must be so, i.e. because others have cultivated excruciating discomfort about fatness, it's just got to be baaaad.

10. Labelling- Defining yourself, rather than the quality or nature of actions/circumstances/occasions.
And that's just ten of them. Don't hold your breath for this to be mentioned or any contrition or reversal of the 'obesity' cult mindwarp to be a direct out in the open target for the alleviation/ reversal of mental and physical health issues [yes I said physical]. Otherwise known as recovery.

What seems to be happening instead is that is deemed your neuroses. I'm not kidding. The constant panic mode insisted on by 'obesity' alarmist rhetoric, plus things like your nervousness through the aftermath of a constant threat of famine and, exorting yourself to diet and feeling angry with yourself for being fat. Is just the mismanagement of your mind.

Well, technically, that's not entirely false either. You did, but it doesn't say you felt morally obligated to go along with it.

This was wholly supported and advanced by "our betters." And they don't have the cojones to state that openly. Their courage is solely in the area of tearing up fat people pompously. Or now latterly dripping us with oleaginous pity, ((((shudder)))).

Luckily, there are some techniques that purportedly change the content of these to quite a degree to reverse the effect, as fatsphere has instinctively been doing by challenging received opinion. And connecting with our own real experience as human beings.

Or "obesity denial"/"fat logic" as our detractors should have it. 

Friday, 24 October 2014

Lifestyle Anorexia

There are quite a number of things I didn't expect to be controversial. Number one, that dieting is proto-anorexia, that is early stage anorexia nervosa (AN).

Allow me to settle that before I continue;
Anorexia is a mental illness.

Anorexia is an illness.

Anorexia is very serious.

Anorexia is very important. 
Okay.........erm, what's the difference between restricting calories to [for] the point of weight loss if you are anorexic or not?

Let's try it this way. A person with a mental health diagnosis jumps up and down, Maasai style. A person who we'll describe as legally sane does the same what's the difference in the mechanics of the act of jumping between the two?


Though context may differ, I'm actually not referring to that. I'm talking about specific action aimed at a specific purpose.

I thought this was obvious, not least to [thin] anorexics themselves, who I'd credited with having the kind of awareness their social status allowed. My policy on listening to others define their state of mind or being is a bit like the rule of asking artists about their work. Suffice to say, some room for a bit of careful and respectful skepticism may be required. We all seek to present ourselves in the light we would wish to be seen in, even unconsciously, which can clash with a more objective interpretation.

I don't necessarily start with that as policy. That starts when what you're saying doesn't make sense.

There's a groove in the thinking of many thin anorexics and their supporters borne of insisting dieting is separate from anorexia. To the extent many who've experienced the (latter) condition can't make sense of it. We all sense this distinction is dubious, but ceded to PWA insistence due to the influence of their social class.

Yes, there are other forms of anorexia, say, those who don't get paid enough. That tends to filter out susceptibility. Those who will cut back on food from those who cannot and have to find ways round that/ cut other necessities. But, that's not the kind we are talking about.

To be scrupulously fair, one could say, dieting as a prescription for 'obesity' did not consciously start off as the aping of anorexia. At least, not permanently. Losing a certain amount of weight and then leaving it behind was perhaps tolerable. What went wrong was the true nature of human metabolic function.

Turns out its built not simply to resist [calorie restriction induced] weight loss, but to recover any loss. Rather like the body does with other tissue loss; blood, bone, skin.

This was a surprise to everyone, myself included. We imagined adipose tissue would behave as we saw it-superfluous. Whether that's so or not, doesn't matter, the point is biologically speaking, the cudgel of starvation just becomes another assault on tissue that the body functions around replacing.

I was intrigued by the (supposed) rationale for separating calorie restriction dieting, from calorie restriction that becomes anorexia. The difference in the latter is the system of defenses that defeat calorie restriction in the main either doesn't function fully, or is somehow overwhelmed by a countering force.

That difference seems mainly inherent in a few, though it can vary in source [for some it seems to be related more to their mindset enabling them to enforce anorexia, rather than having AN proper] and strength. For some its very close to the surface, others less so.

Previous explanation centered on how weight loss dieting trivialized anorexia. In other words the connection wasn't denied then-it was too well known. Now though that has become truth, rather than convenient fiction. What's shocking those who are susceptible to anorexia need to be aware of this connection. Not being so leaves them to blunder into their potential unknowingly. That has always struck me as shockingly cruel. I have to wonder how many who've perished could have been saved by being fully aware of this beforehand.

This disconnection trivialised dieting, making it harder for people to grasp why dieting created such a mess. They ended up blaming themselves for being, greedy, lazy and flaky.

Dieting is so appalling and unsustainable because of the nature of its inherent pathology-something that moves you towards ill health/ death.  Not because there's anything wrong with the dieter-regardless of size. Insisting this continues the pathologizing of 'obesity' by another route.

This is often countered with but, but 'obesity' c'est mal, but even if that was so, it wouldn't alter the pathology and unsustainable nature of calorie restriction dieting.  Indeed, that  form of countering actually acknowledges this.

Even when there is an eating disorder, it's common practice to just swap one disorder for another. Wasted anorexics are coerced/"supported" to overfeed, gainer style as recovery. Reversing the fixation on loss with one of gain. Watching the scales, celebrating gain, rather than loss. Food as the primary route to both, dieting down is the cause and dieting up the "cure."

The same disregard for and riding roughshod over internal feeling. In this case it may be well meaning. But it seems many thin anorexics dislike the possibility of swapping one ED for another plus the weight gain that can occur in a metabolism primed by dieting (down) for gain, see above link.

Wishing to preserve their much valued and hard won thin or at least slimness. Separation of the two enables them to hide their anorexic behaviours, although at a slightly different pace in, successful dieting i.e. "healthy dieting/lifestyle anorexia." 

A lot of people will find this hard to entertain, given the hostility of many, including authority to pro-ana, which is congregations made up of amateurs dedicated to anorexia as a lifestyle. Amateurs who agree with authority can invoke their ire by being too direct about it. Anorexia is well supported by the establishment and the class milieus which generate, at least the administration of it.

As we can see in the way we are all kept contained within calories in/out, up/down. 

When I speak in a personal capacity about anorexia, I'm mostly referring to the experience of dietary restriction and weight loss dieting. Many thin fat phobic anorexics don't seem to realise how potent their condition really is.

Seeing fat people as the unspeakable opposite, they can barely conceive of shared experience from the same source. Despite telling everyone how much more seriously they need to take it, they sometimes can't grasp, a little of it can go a surprisingly long way.  

Friday, 10 October 2014

Real Women L0L

"Un-photoshopped   "the female body-no matter what size or shape"

Examine closely for shaming of the skinnies

That's what the work that brought the term to prominence always referred to, real women. Women in the flesh, have curves. Whether women are thin or not, they curve. They have curves. Especially when their bodies aren't excessively gym modified.

An added reference of RWHC was working class women (in this case Chicana/Latina) and their bodies were made by their lives and their work. Where some of them get the "exercise" that doesn't count.

And that was the problem. WC +/or WoC don't count among the internet classes. "Real women" was cynically false flagged into "skinny shaming." That this nonsense was acceded to is pure and simply thin and class privilege. It had nothing to do with injustice full stop. The idea that thin/slim women ever feel less than real is not convincing.

Yeah, I'm sure they feel insecure in the face of an acceptably voluptuous woman, that's hardly the same thing.

The point of this sort of distraction is slim women still feel caught out by fat women's refutation of the pathology assigned them. They know they "should" support it, but they can't quite make themselves. And they can't think of an acceptable sounding way to put that.

Demanding meaningless shows of subservience is supposed to reassure slim people, but it never does.

Fat people as usual feel very guilty and responsible when slimz are distressed in conjunction with them, so went with this status politicking. Also perhaps to win them round [slim chance].

The irony is, real women have curves, was precisely in response to the surround of technically altered images of women that encourages all to see themselves through this lens of barely attainable. Thin and slim women keep trying to make a complaint about how its assumed they suffer no image problems. Forgetting that they've signed on for being the only acceptable human form/s and are supposedly thus due to their highly evolved consciousness.

If there was desire to communicate. This could have been an opportunity to explore this anguish honestly. Join forces to overcome it. Instead, women aren't ready for that so, the priority is "damage limitation."

Friday, 3 October 2014


This is one of the very bad places depression can get you to;
I follow his eyes to the figure huddled in a corner, head resting on upturned knees, a flimsy blanket covering her modest frame. A saline drip atop a metal pole is connected to her arm.“She doesn’t move from there”, the special offers.
Indeed, in our short time there, as we hover uncertainly, she appears as still as an apparition.....She refuses all food and drink in the next few days and needs intravenous hydration, which is not permitted on the psychiatry ward so she stays on our unit. .....the psychiatrist diagnoses her with catatonic depression, a condition aptly described in 1843 in which patients appear “in a state of stupor, with fixed gaze, a facial expression of frozen astonishment, muteness, and indifference.’
Here's why the body will throw everything it can in the path of something like this. Put it crudely, would it be better to gain 100lbs or end up suspended in the grip of this deathlike de-animated catatonia? That's a rhetorical question. I'm not seeking your imagined preference. I'm getting you to think more in line with your body's instincts and what kind of state it might go all out to stop you reaching.

We're so used to "depression" in the form of a relatively trivial misery that goes with a bit of exercise and self management. The sense of urgency the body might feel about it is lost. Ironic given the supposedly progressive touting of the importance of mental health.

Weight gain=disease process ignores the body's defence mechanisms against mental illness and just what the body might be defending you against. And how well they work-overall. The 'obesity' construct further trivializes mental health by using the destruction of mental health as "motivation" for its neuroses as treatment cure-anorexia and exercise bulimia.

Weight gain can be a defence against sinking into depression, like a life jacket trying to keep you afloat. Stop you from drowning, but obviously, not able to get you out of the water-that's the job of your conscious mind-including and up to enlisting the help of others. Bear in mind that weight is often a layered process. People are on a spectrum of weight, lowest to highest and in between. Weight gain can and often happens on top of/in addition to that.

It can be hard to grasp just how serious a potential threat depression is to your life.  Suicide is obvious, but if you've been depressed, felt miserable as anything for long periods, without feeling that, it may be hard to grasp the feverish activity of your nervous system trying to prevent a slide.

The closest I've ever been to this state was some temporary catatonia when I was trying to prevent myself from eating-this is the absolute truth! Long story short, I ended up with my arms up in the air in a claw-like pose. They'd risen on their own as my muscles got tighter and tighter on their own.

In slow-mo, I became aware of not being able to remember what I was not supposed to be doing, only that I had to keep resisting. I was paralyzed and couldn't move; not a metaphor, I genuinely could not move. I hung there for a while mesmerized by the way my conscious mind's ability to function ran out of any nerves to operate in. Taken over as my brain capacity was, by this rigidity.

So when people tell me, not ask, tell, that I tried minimal calorie restriction for five minutes then threw in the towel, you can imagine why I can lack a certain patience with them. It's also why I tell those who think they've barely bothered with dieting. Don't worry about that, people like me have. You were just more in tune with your body's own wisdom than I. Pat yourself on the back.

To but it bluntly, I was an idiot about dietary restriction. Even after this episode, do you think it occurred to me for one nano-second that this might be the last straw? I'm actually laughing as I type that.

How did this end? Well, after hanging there for what seemed a long time, with no signs of it abating. And, being unnerved by not being able to call to mind, yet knowing what I was not supposed to be doing- I decided to let it arms flopped straight down to my sides.