Changing Our Focus: How Forgetting about Weight Loss Helps Us Get Healthy

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In case you missed all the ways we’ve been getting the word out (Twitter, Facebook, email), we’ll tell you here.  A story on Health at Every Size that features Green Mountain hit the newstands this week.  Delightful writer Marjorie Ingall visited us a few months ago on behalf of Prevention magazine after the editors had been convinced by prominent leaders in the HAES movement — Linda Bacon, in particular — that this was a story they had to tell.

HAES is a hard concept for some people to get their minds around, as it seems to fly in the face of health.  From headlines that scream “obesity kills” to doctors who seemingly focus on weight to the exclusion of most else, it’s understandable how people could be confused.  But it’s really simple.  HAES is about NOT using weight as a measure of health — because it’s not a reliable one!  You can’t look at someone and tell if they’re healthy or not based on their size.

Instead, HAES relies on other, much more reliable indicators of health…and they include happiness along with all the clinical measures such as blood sugar, cholesterol, etc.  You can check out the basic tenets of HAES here.  Do you see how they can lead to health, helping us gain an intrinsic motivation to eat well, move our bodies, and treat them well overall?  That if we start to live like this, our bodies will respond and move to a healthier place?

For those of us who believe weight loss is part of getting healthy for our individual bodies — we’re at unhealthy weights because of the way we’ve been living — rest assured that weight loss can be a natural outcome of adopting an HAES approach to living, if it’s part of getting healthy for us as individuals, just like normalizing blood sugars and other measures can be.  We see it happen all the time at Green Mountain.  After we emailed our alumnae to give them a heads up about the story, we even heard from a few who have experienced it.  You can read of two of their stories  in the Prevention article.  

Do you have any questions about the HAES approach to healthy living? 

 

One Response (Add Yours)

  • Didn’t know that much about HAES. But thanks for the info. I do think that reverting our attention to something else other than our weight can help us. Just losing the stress of worrying alone can help us avoid binge eating or emotional eating. It’s a huge help. We just have to put ourselves in the best possible position all the time.

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