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Dr. Phil’s: The Fat Debate

Posted Apr 09 2010 8:30am

Out of all the day time television talk shows, we Americans have a lot to choose from. Want to have a good laugh? Watch someone like Ellen dance around the room with her audience and joke with celebrities. Want to see something inspiring? Watch Oprah showcase someone’s triumphant story as they overcome hardships in their life. Want to watch someone bring up controversial issues and tell the people straight to their face that their dead wrong? Just watch the Dr. Phil show. Dr. Phil is mostly known for talking about relationships. Those relationships being anywhere from a torn up marriage, to an intense mother-daughter relationship. Yet, Dr. Phil also likes to talk about weight issues. He’s often had shows discussing the problem with obesity, and he’s not shy at all about voicing his opinion.

This past Tuesday, Dr. Phil aired a show titled, The Fat Debate. As you can already imagine, tensions were high because Dr. Phil had a discussion panel of people who accept being fat, and people who are completely against it. Let the cat fighting begin! If you didn’t have a chance to see this epic episode, the article below describes a summary of it, and clicking on the link will direct you to Dr. Phil’s website. When you reach his page, there is a video you can click on that gives a little preview of the show. I have not found a full episode video of the show yet, because it is not available. However, upon watching the video, if you are interested in reading more, click on the link below the video to read a more detailed article summary of the show. Below, is the shorter summary of the episode.

“When director Kevin Smith was kicked off a flight for being overweight, his subsequent actions sparked a feud that has escalated into a war between overweight people and those who criticize them because of their size. Dr. Phil is joined by a panel of experts to debate this hot-button issue. Jillian Michaels, trainer for the hit TV show The Biggest Loser; MeMe Roth, president of the anti-fat organization National Action Against Obesity; Michael Karolchyk, owner of the Anti-Gym; Peggy Howell from the National Association to Advance Fat Acceptance; Marianne Kirby, author of Lessons from the Fat-O-Sphere; Erica Watson, comedienne and star, and Kelly Osbourne, Dr. Phil contributor and author, who says she can relate to both sides of the issue, engage in a heated discussion about the stigmas and stereotypes associated with obesity, the size of airline seats and more. Plus, see how the public reacts to overweight people. You won’t want to miss this lively debate!

Click Here to find out what happen on the show ]]> The pressure to be thin is immense in this country, and the media bombards us endlessly about losing weight. Dr. Phil and his guest panel representing both sides of the fat issue continue the heated discussion about the treatment of fat people in society. John Pinette, an overweight comedian who often pokes fun at his size in his act, adds both insight and levity to topics ranging from banning cupcakes in classrooms to the size of the U.S. Surgeon General, Dr. Regina Benjamin. And, could you be obese and not even know it? Learn a simple way to determine if you fall into that category and the severe health consequences you may face. Plus, emotions rise when the audience weighs in! You don’t want to miss the conclusion to this highly charged show!

Whether you read more about the episode or not, there is something to be said about this issue. Notice that one of the ladies on the discussion panel was from the National Association to Advance Fat Acceptance. This same group defended Gabby Sidibe about being overweight as you read in my “Do The French Have It Right?” post.

However, out of all of the debate on if overweight people should be accepted for who they are, other thoughts come to mind. Most Americans can admit that in order to live a long and happy life, a person needs to have a healthy lifestyle. Therefore, if being overweight makes you unhealthy, and in many cases it does because it promotes diabetes and heart disease, how do you go about telling someone that they need to lose weight for more medical reasons rather than vanity reasons? If you had to, could you tell someone that they needed to lose weight even if the person was completely happy with their size? What if it was someone you loved? That is certainly food for thought.

Questions for you:

Who is right? The people who accept being overweight, or the people against it?

If given the choice, could you tell someone you love that they need to lose weight for health reasons?

Is there a right or wrong way to tell that person that they need to lose weight?

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