Golda Poretsky’s fat acceptance speech seeks to construct a new paradigm in which weight is not necessarily an indicator of health. Poretsky identified “fat” as a dirty word the first time it was directed at her on the playground. She then went on a roller coaster array of diets over the next 24 years, which resulted in her developing a scale dependent self-esteem. Despite other accomplishments in her personal and professional life, Poretsky was continually regarding herself as a failure.
Poretsky wishes to dissipate the myths that suggest that health is contingent on weight loss. She notes that 95% of people who lose weight on a diet eventually gain all (or more) of the weight back, and the elusive 5% that manages to stick to their post-diet size aren’t keeping large amounts of weight off. Most diets are unsuccessful and only lead to a yo-yoing cycle.
Poretsky maintains that fat is not as dangerous as it’s purported to be, noting that people who engage in four key behaviors have the same life expectancy regardless of their size. She urges us to adopt a body-positive doctrine; merely having the intention to love your body, she believes, will create a ripple-effect of non-judgement and peace.