What is the best way to comment on someone’s body?
Not saying anything at all.
We live in a world that is scared of the word “fat.” It’s common to believe weight loss is synonymous with health, and weight gain means not caring about your health. Making these assumptions can be harmful, and commenting on others bodies can cause harm, especially when you don’t know what they are dealing with physically or mentally.
When you notice that someone has lost weight, it could be due to:
-Illness/not able to eat enough to sustain their body weight
-Using harmful substances/drugs
-An eating disorder/disordered eating behaviors
When you notice that someone has gained weight, it may due to:
-Being in eating disorder/dieting recovering and repairing their metabolism
-Starting a new, vital medication that causes weight gain
Hearing comments about your body can perpetuate harmful behaviors, or halt behaviors that may be important for health/recovery. Comments from others about your body can fuel body shame and feelings of pressure to change your body in order to feel accepted or noticed. This may include harmful behaviors as stated above or cessation of health-enhancing behaviors.
If you are praised for losing weight, it can easily send the message that your body was “wrong” before and create anxiety to maintain the “ideal.” We were created to be diverse, and attempts to achieve a weight you aren’t genetically designed for is not sustainable. If you talk about others’ bodies in front of vulnerable people (especially children), they too can feel pressure to look a certain way or compare their bodies to others.
You never know what someone may be dealing with when you make body comments, whether good or bad. You really cannot assume anything based on appearance alone. For this reason, it is best not to say anything at all to anyone about their body or other people’s bodies.Follow me on social media: