Fat Stigma Persists Among Women Even After They’ve Lost Weight

by Chris Curley on June 1, 2012

People rate formerly overweight and obese women as less attractive even after they’ve slimmed down, a new study finds.

Moreover, if study participants were told that a subject’s obesity was “easy to manage,” they became even more negative and judgmental towards the formerly overweight person, Fox News reported May 29.

“Stigmatized conditions are despised more when they are perceived as easily controllable — a widespread perception about obesity,” explains study lead author Janet Latner, Ph.D., of the University of Hawaii at Mānoa.

“The strength of obesity stigma is so powerful, pervasive and persistent,” Latner adds. “[Our results show] just how strong and harmful it can be. Many people are seeking weight loss to shake off the sting of obesity, and they may not necessarily achieve that.”

The study appears online in the journal Obesity.

(Photo © Wikimedia Commons)