Thanks to everyone who responded to the last post. Challenging orthodoxy is difficult, but challenging it in a classroom setting is most often totally futile unless approached correctly. Again, it’s a parallel I see between the body acceptance and animal rights movements, going against a thousand cultural norms and ‘facts’ that ‘everyone knows.’ You have to be very careful not to sound like a total quack.
I had decided to take the advice of several people and find a couple of articles and studies contradicting the idea of obesity being easily ‘curable.’ I also prepared a few questions that I hoped didn’t sound overly rehearsed (acting skills do come in handy!) about the complexity of human metabolism. I figured the next time she brought it up I would ask a few basic questions then approach her later, outside of class, to show her some of the information I had “just found” when researching the topic.
Turns out that it was all unnecessary. During our next class, while lecturing on the structure of carbohydrates and lipids, our professor somehow got on the topic of BMI, someone asked if we were going to learn about healthy weights and bmi and such.
“We’ll do a quick overview of bmi. It’s history. The categories etc… But I won’t spend a lot of time on it because I think it’s garbage. We will talk about making healthy food choices for various people in different stages of life, but we won’t talk about any monolithic healthy weight categories because they don’t exist. It’s different for everyone.”*
People seemed very upset by her pronouncement. I nearly cheered.
I mean, it’s not perfection. She still talks about avoiding calorie-dense food so as not to gain weight so I’m guessing that she’s one of the people who believes in healthy weight ranges so long as no one is “too” fat. But still, you could tell her message was revolutionary to most of the class.
I swear. Between this and the now famous NY Times article, I’m expecting a full fatty revolution any day now.