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Lessons from the Fat-o-sphere: Quit Dieting and Declare a Truce with Your Body [Paperback]

Kate Harding , Marianne Kirby
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
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Book Description

May 5 2009
From the leading bloggers in the fat-acceptance movement comes an empowering guide to body image- no matter what the scales say.

When it comes to body image, women can be their own worst enemies, aided and abetted by society and the media. But Harding and Kirby, the leading bloggers in the "fatosphere," the online community of the fat acceptance movement, have written a book to help readers achieve admiration for-or at least a truce with-their bodies. The authors believe in "health at every size"-the idea that weight does not necessarily determine well-being and that exercise and eating healthfully are beneficial, regardless of whether they cause weight loss. They point to errors in the media, misunderstood and ignored research, as well as stories from real women around the world to underscore their message. In the up-front and honest style that has become the trademark of their blogs, they share with readers twenty-seven ways to reframe notions of dieting and weight, including: accepting that diets don't work, practicing intuitive eating, finding body-positive doctors, not judging other women, and finding a hobby that has nothing to do with one's weight.


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Lessons from the Fat-o-sphere: Quit Dieting and Declare a Truce with Your Body + Fat! So?: Because You Don't Have to Apologize for Your Size + Hot & Heavy: Fierce Fat Girls on Life, Love & Fashion
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Most helpful customer reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book Oct. 17 2011
By Soph
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I totally enjoyed reading, at last, a book that does not try to sell me how thin I should look.
And why, for my "health's sake".
Written by two girls who know what they're talking about, telling all about this big conspiracy against "fat"; And they're so honest about themselves too, you can actually relate to their life experiences. It's all about expanding... both accepting the expansion of your waistline, which is most likely not your fault, and expanding your consciousness about the false surveys done to become both fearfull and hatefull of your fat. Big financial interests for pills to gadgets have set the foundation for a lot of prejudice, leading to a fat-o-phobic society, presumingly fat that will surely kill you (says who, find out: read also "Health at any size").
I'm a better shopper now, I open my ears and eyes to this propaganda, and will not initiate anymore pettytalk about my (now non-existant) efforts and research to loose weight; I do notice it's not easy to change my own attitude of self-defeat and to get to a guilt-free way of eating like, for example, justifying my choice of lunch to co-workers. I'm finally reaching a truce where there is no "good" or "bad" food, for any reason. BUT: there are: "bad friends" and "wrong lovers" that send us subtle (or not so) messages about how they think we should look, but happily, good ones too!... how to tell the difference... and speak up!!
This book is a relief to us all: No "expert" to tell me what to eat and how many times a day I should jump up and down; At last authors explaining me with a great deal of everyday humor, that I'm very ok with the way I look, and feed myself.
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4.0 out of 5 stars a little book with big ideas March 12 2014
By mina
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I'm so glad I bought this. What a great book and with suck great insight. It's got a lot of charcter
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.4 out of 5 stars  43 reviews
147 of 159 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This Book Got Me a Date May 6 2009
By elemenoP - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This book got me a date.

Seriously. I was lucky enough to read an advanced copy (but I still bought the finished book as a show of appreciation and support). I was 6 months out of a relationship and feeling anxious about putting my girthful self out into the cruel world of dating. I decided I would take the leap in the spring AFTER I'd lost 50 pounds. Then I read Fat-O-Sphere. It made me feel strong. If I was happy and successful and active and feeling great, why not embrace it? Being fat did not negate all those really good things. So I promptly began online dating. And it worked. I'm having extreme fun and meeting lots of men (some amazing, some ok, some crazy) who delight in my glamorous heft. I am beyond grateful to Marianne and Kate for writing a book that helped me stop feeling ashamed and guilty and confused.

Health at every size, peace of mind at every size, happiness at any size--that's what this book advocates, explains and encourages.
115 of 125 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lessons LEARNED from the Fat-O-Sphere May 6 2009
By R. C. Gold - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This book is funny, witty, engaging, and most of all educational. As the authors say, a lot of what the book is about seems like common sense, but it's so hard to start thinking that way about your body, especially for women. Whether you are are fat or not, whether you are a chronic dieter or not, this book is really fabulous for helping you let you of your self-hate and starting to accept yourself and your body for who and what they are. I hope it's a trend that catches on with more women in media.
109 of 121 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hilarious and mind-opening May 6 2009
By Corinna - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I am so excited to read this book. Kate and Marianne's blogs are leaders in a movement that is key for women's sanity and the general culture's sanity around body image and health. Thanks to them I stopped obsessing over food and started practicing intuitive eating and guess what? I haven't gained weight and I feel much better focusing my energy on other things. (BTW, I have never been what comment trolls would probably consider "fat," but I have never felt like my body is socially acceptable either. I still don't think so, but these wonderful bloggers have taught me it's much more fun not to care.) I'm buying four copies of this book to share with women who are dear to me.
54 of 63 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Like a conversation with some REALLY good friends May 7 2009
By S. E. Sarliker - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This book made me giggle, cringe in self-recognition, nod in agreement and cheer.
If you are dead-set on hating yourself, this isn't the book for you. But if you've been thinking that maybe those crazy fat acceptance folks have a point about dieting not working, you are ready to sit down and listen to two honest, caring girlfriends who will tell it like it is.
No, it's not all unicorns and cotton candy, accepting your body and yourself is hard work, it's just a different (and more rewarding) kind of work than what restricting your eating and exercising as punishment are. This book provides some specific direction and resources for feeling better about, and connected to it, taking better care of, your body.
If you aren't female, you might not feel like you are being spoken to directly, the way that I did when I read it, but if you have women in your lives (moms, friends, girlfriends, wives, sisters) who could use some reinforcement in the body love department, this book may make a great gift (but not for someone who will feel insulted by the word "fat-o-sphere").
I know the authors couldn't include everything in the whole world of fat acceptance in the book, but if you want to know more about intuitive eating, I also recommend "The Diet Survivor's Handbook: 60 Lessons in Eating, Acceptance and Self-Care."
I know I'll be glad I have this book on my shelf during those times when my acceptance muscles are feeling fatigued -- girlfriends Kate and Marianne (and special guests) will be there to remind me of what I need to do to get back on the path to good self care.
49 of 57 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fantastic read May 6 2009
By Jessica Stinner - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Whether or not you're already hip to the ideas that 1.) it is possible to be healthy, beautiful and fabulous at any size and 2.) weight is not an indicator of moral character, this is a fantastic read. With keen intelligence and razor-sharp wit, Kate Harding and Marianne Kirby hit on a variety of topics, including the science and philosophy behind a HAES (Health at Every Size) lifestyle, reading medical studies with a critical eye, and even just finding clothes that look great. They give suggestions for navigating through fitting rooms, doctors offices, and even the dating scene with your sanity intact. Several guest essays sprinkled through the chapters bring a variety of experiences and insights to the mix.

Naysayers may believe that the Fat-O-Sphere exists to make excuses for gluttony and laziness, but this is simply not so. If losing weight were an easy prospect, people wouldn't spend their lives caught in the throes of yo-yo dieting, weight cycling and shame. The book includes an extremely powerful essay by Barbara Benesch-Granberg, whose mother began avoiding doctors after constant lectures and shaming. Her hesitance to seek medical attention on the basis that any problem she might have would be chalked up to her weight ended up costing her life.

Harding and Kirby suggest an intuitive approach to eating and taking pleasure in physical activity purely for the purposes of health betterment, regardless of weight.
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