Friday, May 25, 2012

Article: Weight Stereotyping

To avoid the heat in the house, I went to the public library for the afternoon yesterday to pick up things for my brother. I sat in one of their comfy chairs and proceeded to read the newest magazines.

I stumbled upon an article that drew my attention in Glamour Magazine entitled: Weight Stereotyping: The Secret Way People are Judging You Based on Your Body.

This was the photo that immediately caught my eye.

It's definitely an interesting read giving insight about the stereotypes about women from both sides of the weight spectrum.
"Discrimination against heavier people is well documented—and, sadly, rising: a full 66 percent in the past decade, according to a Yale University study. But could this kind of bias extend to women of all sizes? And are people looking at your body and making assumptions about your life—and your personality?" 
Source: Glamour Magazine  June 2012
With that premise, they conducted a poll with 1,800 women ranging from 18 years old to 40 years old. They were told to imagine a woman whom they have never met or knew anything about except that she was "overweight" or "thin." Then they chose a word from a pair of adjectives like "ambitious" or "lazy" but they also had the option to choose "neither." 
Heavy women are pegged as…
“lazy” 11 times as often as thin women; “sloppy” nine times; “undisciplined” seven times; “slow” six times as often.
While thin women are seen as…
“conceited” or “superficial” about eight times as often as heavy women; “vain” or “self-centered” four times as often; and “bitchy,” “mean,” or “controlling” more than twice as often.
Even the “good” labels are unfair.
An overweight woman may be five times as likely to be perceived as “giving” as a skinny one. “But it just fits into the stereotype that thin women are not that way,” explains Ann Kearney-Cooke, Ph.D. “It’s still putting women in a box based on their body size.”
Results from Glamour Magazine

I know they teach us at an early age not to judge a book by its cover but it's definitely easier said than done. Since I've been on both ends of the spectrum though I would never classify myself as "thin," I know that people can be very cruel. The article refers to it as a "secret" the way people judge you but more often than not I feel like it's very much out in the open. 

Have you ever been unfairly judged?


  1. I heard about this article. I have to admit, I've judged people according to their weight too before. Not something I'm proud of. I can say though, since starting my own weight loss journey, I am definitely more concious about making such judgements and now make an effort to see past outer appearances before judging.

  2. As a bigger woman I so know about how some people will look at you and judge you, it is wrong and all we can do is help eductate people so that future generations will do better.

  3. Super interesting! I definitely think women are judged by their weight, whether bigger or smaller. Unfortunately judging someone by their "cover" is something I think that we naturally do.

  4. I've been hearing about this article for a few about a week now. Yes, I've been judged, we all have been judged. If it's not weight, it's about your race, your gender, the way you sound, the clothes you wear, etc. I'm guilty of it too, unfortunately. But like Chica said, we all are in some way.

  5. I have more than likely been judged, and I admit, I have been quick to make some judgements in the past. Like when I'm walking through the mall and I see a woman whom I think is more attractive than I am, I always think she is criticizing me in her mind, just picking me apart mentally. I just automatically assume that because she is pretty, she's a bitch.

  6. Thanks for posting, that was definitely an interesting read. No matter who we are we all have a tendency to judge people based on their looks, so the information in this article makes total sense.
    When I go on long distance trips I wear a dress and make up. Why? Because employees and customers in gas stations are a hundred times nicer to a gal in pretty clothing, and it makes the trip way more pleasant.

  7. Im losing weight now and I have NEVER heard such bull. I get called names FOR NO REASON! Im still Stef! And they dont even know I was fat before! Go figure!!

  8. Have I ever been unfairly judged? Probably. Fortunately it isn't something I have focused on very much and no examples come to mind from recent years, which could just mean I have a fantastic group of friends and family :)

  9. Loved this, thanks for sharing! I think everyone woman, no matter what size has definitely been down this road before. I was actually just doing some research on how men perceive overweight women and a lot of these sentiments rang true, especially about being lazy and having poor hygiene. It's sad that this is the world we live in, but I still have hope that we can make it right one day.

  10. I know I've been judged...paid less...treated differently because of my weight. I try really hard not to judge others. I catch myself....sadly I do it sometimes. I am really aware and try not to do it!

    Keep focused!


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