Anti Fat Prejudice Essay

1399 Words 6 Pages
Introduction:
A common American motto is that “bigger is better” when it comes to homes, cars, amusement parks and most importantly food and portions. This mindset played a huge role in what many would say is recent obesity epidemic that has not only swept our nation but also a large part of the world. Currently, more than one third of American adults are obese and these figures continue to rise as we continue to live an overindulgent and sedentary lifestyle (“Adult Obesity Facts,” 2015). This is an immense social issue that is significant to the American health care system: our cost of healthcare per capita is double that of most developed European countries (Kane, 2012). Exploring obesity from an economic perspective, there are increased
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Anti-fat prejudice can best be described as “a negative attitude toward (dislike of), belief about (stereotype), or behavior against (discrimination) people perceived as being fat” (McHugh & Kasarda, 2012). As explained previously, this is common and is one of the main reasons why people who are obese suffer from social and institutional discrimination like through unemployment or being ostracized by society because being fat is seen as dangerous, unhealthy and disfiguring” (McHugh & Kasardo, 2012). By having huge subsets of the population view the individual that suffers from obesity in such a negative light, it has psychological implications by affecting their mental health and self esteem. In the Feminist Forum journal, authors Maureen McHugh and Ashley Kasardo (2012) explain how women are divided by fat oppression which does not allow them to feed and nurture themselves or others. Women are very communal and look after one another, but being stigmatized by society divides them and does not allow for them to receive the support that they need(McHugh & Kasarda, 2012). Women who have higher rates of obesity are at more of a risk of “depressive episodes, as well as increased suicidal ideation and attempt” (McHugh & Kasarda, 2012). This is a reflection of the isolation caused by the social and institutional discrimination that they face: in order to address their mental well being, they also have to seek out medical attention with a psychologist or psychiatrists that can help through therapy and medication. This is an additional economic burden that they have to bear aside from their physiological symptoms. Many times, there have been documented cases in which “racist and classist biases have resulted in some individuals receiving inadequate medical and mental health

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