Friends don’t let friends “Fat Talk”…

How to Become Fat Talk Free


What is “Fat Talk”?

Fat Talk isn’t about being overweight. In fact, Fat Talk has nothing to do with your size at all.

Fat Talk is extremely triggering of unhealthy behaviors, whether the comments are consciously processed or not. Putting yourself down verbally creates reverse inertia in all aspects of your life.

Instead of getting healthier, Fat Talk will motivate you to overeat, skip your workouts, and stay involved in toxic relationships. Additionally, even if you don’t ‘hear’ your own Fat Talk, your friends and family members will, and it harms them emotionally, spiritually, and physically as well.  As Jillian Michaels said,“Fat talk is transcending….  It affects your reality and damages you professionally, personally, and physically.”


How can we begin to stop Fat Talking?

  • Consciously correct yourself if you Fat Talk.  Replace those thoughts with something realistic and positive.
  • Don’t compare your body to others.
  • Appreciate your body for what it can do.  If you feel down and are Fat Talking, try going for a walk and enjoy being outside.
  • Turn a negative into a positive.  Instead of “I’m stocky,” try “I’m strong!”
  • Never Fat Talk in front of your kids or friends.


What About Fat Talking to ourselves?  Is it as bad if we don’t express it aloud?

According to Opertion Beautiful, who works closely with NEDA (National Eating Disorders Association) Guilt is internal Fat Talk.  It is shaming and blaming yourself for not meeting a perfectionist ideal that is unattainable and determined by the rigid standards our society has created! If you wouldn’t say it out loud to a friend, why would you say it to yourself?


Maybe right now you’re thinking: “But a little guilt can be a GOOD thing!” or “Guilt is a normal reaction to indulging!” But, if guilt was healthy or “normal,” it would be PRODUCTIVE and it would make you HAPPY.  Do you find yourself feeling guilty over food a lot?  Well, then — you’re repeating the same actions over and over again… Guilt isn’t productive, it doesn’t work, and it only serves to lower your self -esteem. Guilt steals your time and takes away from productive things you could be doing with your time — meditating, studying, sleeping, calling your friends on the phone, and more.

How do you stop guilt? It’s so much harder to stop than Fat Talk — after all, we verbalize Fat Talk to others and it’s easier to “catch” ourselves in conversation.  Guilt, on the other hand, is this weird, creeping feeling that takes over you, ruins your day, and triggers the blues. I would say I cut down on my guilt thinking by about 90%, which I consider to be a big accomplishment.  I stopped guilting myself by really thinking about my eating in the grand scheme of life. Am I an awesome friend and hard worker who is so much more than the food she eats? Of course!


If there is something about your lifestyle that you want to change, be proactive and CHANGE IT. Guilting yourself about it does not work.  Taking action to move onwards and upwards does.  Every setback is an opportunity to learn, grow, and improve.

If you have questions, concerns or want to chat with someone about your experiences with FAT TALK, come chat with a counsellor at Selkirk – we can look at ways of reducing personal fat talk and encourage new healthy ways of talking to ourselves! Send us an email or inquire about a referral to the West Kootenay Eating Disorder Clinic.

Castlegar Counsellors:

Tami O’Meara
Nicole Ripley
Dianne Schwartz

Nelson Counsellors:

Robin Higgins

West Kootenay Eating Disorder Clinic contact:

Caryn Malabar 250 505 7252 or 1 877 221 3388


Join Selkirk College on the quest to eliminate Fat Talk in all its nasty and evil forms from our lives!  Remember, it starts now… and it starts with you.

Lets move away from the THIN IDEAL and towards the HEALTHY IDEAL

Other resources:

One response to “Friends don’t let friends “Fat Talk”…

  1. I just wanted to tell my experience at a fitness clas the other day. The instructor is a twenty-something young woman, and one of the most fit people I’ve ever known. She is a wonderful instructor and makes the classes challenging but enjoyable. She teaches a lot and with all of her exercise, I figured out that she must burn an additional 8,000-9,000 calories a week. The other day in class, she commented on how she treated herself to a “popcycle”, implying that it was a type of taboo food. I was surprised because she could likely eat a whole carton of ice cream and it wouldn’t have the least affect on her weight given her age and the amount of exercise she does (not to say eating a whole carton of ice cream would be a good idea either). But mostly, I was saddened to think of the message it gave to the class: that in order to be “healthy” you have to adopt quasi-neurotic eating habits as well. It also made me wonder how many women in the class would even question this logic? It also showed the insidiousness of how this type of thinking can plague the fitness industry, an industry we associate with health and well-being and look up to for leadership in this regard.

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