We all can feel the effects of weight stigma, no matter what our size. In this episode, we help you feel good about the body you’re living in and give strategies to improve your health without obsessing about your weight.
Recognize that weight stigma can actually harm your physical health.
Here’s what to remember: In one research study, people were pulled out of what they thought was a “shopping psychology” study because they wouldn’t fit into the designer clothes set up for the experiment. Afterward, those people had higher cortisol levels than those who weren’t excluded. Prolonged exposure to excess cortisol can cause your body to deposit fat in your belly region, which is the kind of fat associated with a greater risk of heart disease and Type 2 diabetes.
“Experiencing weight stigma can sort of trigger these processes that ironically make you gain more weight,” says Janet Tomiyama, a health psychologist at UCLA and senior author of the study. “And that could put you at even more risk for weight stigma.”
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