Big Fat Facts Big Fat Index

Big Thighs

New research suggests that, as the lead researcher of the study puts it, "leg fat is good fat." Leg fat! A University of Colorado study found that "being bottom-heavy was linked to better scores on.. triglycerides and high sugar levels." For women who weren't bottom-heavy, the results weren't as dramatic but still there. [Several BFBers sent this in - thank you.]

Airlines On Our Side? | Fat and the Oreo

Koneko August 20th, 2005 | Link | Heh. Well, since we can't
Heh. Well, since we can't buy pants anywhere, we oughta get =something= to compensate. ;)
antidieter August 20th, 2005 | Link | well talking how it is
well talking how it is harmless they still me remind us fat people that you dont' want to maintain excess fat there, so basically while there is no health reason for losing thigh fat you should still lose it so you won't be overly fat, whatever that means. thigh fat is pregenancy and milk producing fat and why should something that is naturally there be considered bad anyway? belly fat is usually the result of yo yo dieting over the years, losing weight gaining weight losing weight gaining weight etc, so some one with a big belly especially woman tells me they have endured famines in their lives for the sake of appearances due to the thin is in mentality. RR
amberbugg August 20th, 2005 | Link | Well I found this article to
Well I found this article to be reassuring, being bottom heavy myself. And I remember a time when the emphasis was not BMI but waist to hip ratio, which I could meet. What I don't like about this article is the first few lines and the title - all suggesting that woman are supposed to hate their thighs. Not to mention the last lines saying that all woman hate their thighs, like it's natural and inevitable. I don't hate my thighs. I have more rancor for my hair, which is curly and unmanagable. But that's genetics too.
pani113 August 20th, 2005 | Link | Fat protective. Gee who
Fat protective. Gee who would have thought! (Said with all the sarcasim I can muster!) Even beyond hip and thigh fat, have we not been saying for years that association is not causation? In all those studies that show fatter people have a higher rate of heart disease yada yada, how do we know fat isn't there trying to protect the body? And when doctors tell the patients to lose weight without treating their original symptoms they may actually be stripping them of their natural protection. Of course it is not as profitable as giving them pills that end up killing them.
pakrat August 21st, 2005 | Link | Let's hear it for our
Let's hear it for our "thunder thighs"--yeah!
amalee August 21st, 2005 | Link | 'Association is not
'Association is not causation." Is that available in a bumper sticker? One of my fav phrases.
Korry August 21st, 2005 | Link | Looking at the women in my
Looking at the women in my family, and friend's families, makes me think where one carries their weight has more to do with genetics than anything else.
rebelle August 21st, 2005 | Link | Well,since now they've shown
Well,since now they've shown (again) that pear shape has certain inexplicable health advantages over apple shape (NB: I did NOT say that "pears are better than apples"),maybe there will now be this crazy push to urge women to try to be more pear-shaped. And sell products and gimmicks designed to do just that. That of course do not work. And when people can't will themselves to be pear shaped, advance the discrimination, mocking, and harrassment of them for their "moral failings." And elevate to the status of virtual goddesses the women lucky enough to be born with the "right" shape, using them to sell to those who weren't the possibility that, if they just "try hard enough" or buy the right product, they can get into this little VIP club as well. Wait. You mean people already HAVE done this, to those of us who cannot will ourselves to look like fashion models? It's called the diet industry? Oh. Too bad this study isn't being taken as general proof that there's little many can "do" about their size, regardless their shape, because for many, size, like shape, is genetic! Concerning lipo, forget about whether it's a bad thing to remove fat from thighs, and make this leap: Lipo is bad, period. As a clarification, though, the article didn't say ALL women hate their tighs. It quoted a woman who said she believed all of the women SHE KNEW hated their thighs. I had to read that quote twice, because at first glance, I thought she WAS saying "all women hate their thighs," which of course would be a sweeping and offensive statement. Sadly,the article is right on one point: "Fashion magazines have more impact than science." I don't take the fashion mags as gospel; I know probably many reading this post don't, either, but the fact is, A LOT of people in the general public DO. (Marketing!) It is again too bad, though, that the article didn't make the leap to: "science can be distorted by Big Pharm and Big Diet, the industries that want us all to believe fat is bad. Scare tactics have more impact than the truth."
sjbrodwall August 21st, 2005 | Link | Sorry RR, but your
Sorry RR, but your assumption is most definitely false. I've never really gone on a diet--certainly never lost weight on one--and have a very large belly. This body type is also more common among Northern Europeans, from what I can tell (funny thing--the pants I buy here in Norway tend to be too big in the waist by quite a bit, while the pants I buy in the US tend to be way too tight in the waist). It's true that a larger portion of regained fat returns as belly fat, but I find your assumption that someone who looks like me *must* have "endured famines in their lives for the sake of appearances due to the thin is in mentality" quite insulting, as a matter of fact.
kimdog August 22nd, 2005 | Link | Sjbrodwall, where can I buy
Sjbrodwall, where can I buy those Norwegian pants? (from another "apple" with a big belly who has done very little dieting.)
sjbrodwall August 22nd, 2005 | Link | Heh. I bought them from a
Heh. I bought them from a place called Ellos: But the prices are Norwegian as well as the proportions, so you're probably better off buying custom-made pants in the US. I can highly recommend Land's End's custom pants. What an experience, to slide on a pair of pants and have them fit perfectly!
kimdog August 22nd, 2005 | Link | Thanks for the advice!
Thanks for the advice!
aces219 August 22nd, 2005 | Link | Thirded on the "big belly,
Thirded on the "big belly, little dieting" at least until the age of 19. It isn't any bigger now post-diet and weight gain than it was before. It's genetic, I do believe. I don't see how from a size acceptance standpoint we can support these studies that say one shape is better than another...isn't that contrary to the overall acceptance that we're going for?
antidieter August 22nd, 2005 | Link | most woman I believe have
most woman I believe have some belly, what I was referring to is a big belly, that kind that hangs and sticks out to where you can't see your feet when you are standing straight up. famines don't have to be dieting, it could be just undereating because you are missing hunger cues, or out of habit or too busy to eat so you don't eat within a few minutes of I know when I am hungry cue, that sorta thing, your's maybe genetic i don't know but I have read this information in research papers that the trend is that if you have a big belly there is a famine history whether one is aware of it or not. and there is no need to take offense, and whether one gets a bigger belly then they started out with depends on your body's famine sensitivity, what does that mean exactly? what it says your sensitivity to famines both mild and severe. if your famine sensitivity is high you can gain weight easily without undereating very much and causing excess weight gained on top of what have may be lost. and you can train your body to have a higher famines sensitivty than when you started out in life, by frequent undereating, even if you are not intentionally doing it, or having such a low quality diet that your body interprets it as a quality famine, which is still considered a form of semi starvation as far as the body is concerned. if you disagree that is fine, but this is the understanding I have gained over the years. RR
sjbrodwall August 22nd, 2005 | Link | I take offense when people
I take offense when people make assumptions about my behavior based on my appearance. I also take offense when people imply that they know more about my behavior than I do. I also take offense when other people tell me whether or not it's acceptable for me to take offense. I have no problem with disagreeing; that's not the bone I have to pick with your post. I agree with you that when people regain lost weight, a larger proportion of it tends to come back in the belly area. That's not the issue here. I have a problem with making assumptions about behavior based on appearance--and that's a pretty basic issue in the fat acceptance movement. For example, I don't like it when people use the term "real" woman to refer to non-thin women, implying that anyone who fits the societal ideal must necessarily be a dupe of the patriarchy. I don't like it when people assume fat people are unhealthy, or that thin people are healthy. Even worse is when you assume that you know something about my dieting history and psychology when you see my big, hanging, floppy belly, and on top of that assume that if I disagree with your assumption, that I am mistaken in my knowledge about myself. Such hubris! I thought these were precisely the kinds of problems we in the fat acceptance movement were working to remedy. Aces291 says: "I don't see how from a size acceptance standpoint we can support these studies that say one shape is better than another...isn't that contrary to the overall acceptance that we're going for?" I don't think a scientific finding per se can be against what we're working towards in fat acceptance. It may be a fact of nature that people with gynecoid fat patterns live longer and/or have less of certain types of diseases than people with android fat distributions. We'd look pretty foolish as a movement if we tried to argue against a fact (diabetes is definitely correlated with fat, for example). We can, of course, argue about the quality of the science. :) We do so often, and for good reason (correlation is not causation, and studies that imply so are jumping to conclusions--bad science). I think the place of fat acceptance is not necessarily to dispute the finding, but make sure that apple-shaped ladies such as myself are not discriminated against because of the findings.
paul August 22nd, 2005 | Link | I think the place of fat
I think the place of fat acceptance is not necessarily to dispute the finding, but make sure that apple-shaped ladies such as myself are not discriminated against because of the findings. Great, great point. To be fair though, there've been studies that have dissociated diabetes and fat... and that science can be argued over, as well! I ask that everyone take a wee breather on this topic and remember: we're all in this together.
kimdog August 22nd, 2005 | Link | Once again dittoing
Once again dittoing sjbrodwall (especially since you are much more eloquent that I am). I was a fat kid, but when I hit puberty, I started gaining more weight in two places- my stomach and breasts. In fact, I had stretch marks on my tummy just like a pregnant woman. I had never dieted at this point in my life, and had never had my food restricted in anyway by my family. I just have a genetic disposition to carry most of my weight in my belly. Anitdieter, there maybe there is something to the whole famine/belly theory that you are citing. But I take issue with your insistence that this theory applies to everyone with a "big belly, that kind that hangs and sticks out to where you can't see your feet when you are standing straight up", because it just doesn't.
sjbrodwall August 22nd, 2005 | Link | Koneko--I wonder who it is
Koneko--I wonder who it is that they're making pants for, 'cause it sure isn't apple-shaped women, either! Paul--You're right; I'm sorry. My nerves are frazzled because I nessed up on my company's taxes. Fun stuff, trying to do taxes for a self-owned business in a foreign language. "innberetningspliktig pensjonskostnad", try that on for size.
paul August 23rd, 2005 | Link | No need to apologize,
No need to apologize, really. Things heat up; things cool down - it's just natural for discussion. "innberetningspliktig pensjonskostnad" Oy!
jlm August 23rd, 2005 | Link | I have a question, and maybe
I have a question, and maybe I'm just not too good at perceiving my body, but I really can't tell if I would be a apple or a pear shape. Is there another choice (at least, does research into this sort of thing look at other shapes besides apples and pears?) in basic body fat distribution? As far as I can tell, I'm equally fat all over. The belly and the thighs and all the rest seem to be proportionally the same, size-wise. And, if my memory is correct, it has always been that way, even though other family members seem to favor the apple shape. I always took this sort of even distribution as my own personal sign that my body was meant to be big, but of course this is just my own opinion and not one gleaned from any research studies. I'd be curious to hear from others who don't obviously favor the pear or apple shape-thanks!
Korry August 23rd, 2005 | Link | Yes, there are other
Yes, there are other choices. I'm not an apple or pear, either. I'm more of an hourglass. :)
Dolley August 23rd, 2005 | Link | Below is a rough thumbnail
Below is a rough thumbnail of women’s body types, with an acknowledgement that there is infinite variety within the archetypes. Note: Body type is determined by both bone structure and weight distribution, which is where many women get confused. The hourglass: shoulders (at the pivot point) and hips are the same width, producing an hourglass or X shape. The classic hourglass has a 10” or more difference between the bust, waist and hips, with the bust measurement being approximately equal to the hips, and a fair amount of that measurement being bosom. This is where a lot of women get confused, because their bust measurements are the same as their hip measurements, yet their shoulder straps may fall down because their shoulders are narrow. These women are more accurately described as busty pears, rather than classic hourglasses, because of the shoulder/hip proportions; the shoulders are really the key to determining figure type. It is also possible to have shoulders and hips which are the same width, but perhaps not much of a bust. That woman is still technically an hourglass; there’s just a bit more sand in the bottom, that’s all. It is possible to be an hourglass with a big belly, which is what I am. The hourglass may have heavy thighs; I do. She often has heavy upper arms, if she's bosomy (again, I do). The pear: shoulders (at the pivot point) are narrower than the hips, forming a triangular outline, with the base (hips) being wider than the top (shoulders). It is perfectly possible to be a bosomy pear, with a wideish waist and wide hips; it is possible to be a small-bosomed pear, with a tiny waist and wide hips, or a bosomy pear with a small waist and wide hips. The pear may or may not have a big belly to accompany the wide hips. The pear very often has heavy thighs, and may have a big backside. Or not. The triangle: shoulders (at the pivot point) are wider than the hips, forming an upside-down triangular outline, with the base (hips) being narrower than the top (shoulders). It is possible to be a bosomy triangle; it is possible to be flattish triangle. This is the figure which is often apt to be very broad through the shoulders, and may have little or no waist indentation; the waist may be nearly the same size as the hips; the backside can be quite small. This figure often carries a lot of weight in the midriff, tapering down through the hips. The triangle often has very slender legs, whatever her weight. The ruler: shoulders (at the pivot point) are approximately the same size as the hips; there is very little indentation at the waist (less than 8” difference between bust, waist and hips). This figure tends to look very rectangular. The ruler often seems to have legs which are slender. The silhouette is straight up-and-down. The apple: from what I’ve read and seen, there’s less emphasis on shoulder/hip proportion, and more on weight distribution. The apple carries her weight in her midriff (between the ribs and the waist), at her waist (the part where we bend) and at her abdomen, or belly, rather than in her bust, her hips, her backside or her thighs. The apple’s silhouette is circular, and her legs are slender in proportion to the rest of her. Her widest part tends to be in the middle, not at the shoulder or the hips. What confuses most people is weight distribution, and the tendency people have to fixate on either a body part, or a measurement, rather than analyzing the entire figure. The bust and hips can be the same measurement, but the back can be wide and the bosom can be small. The shoulders can be narrower than the hips, and the bust measurement smaller than the hips, but if the back is narrow, the woman may be quite busty. Five women can have the same measurement around the hips, but one has wide hips and a flat rear, another is narrow around the hips with a prominent rear, another is fairly even all around, another is narrow through the hips and rear, with a prominent belly, and so on.
Dolley August 23rd, 2005 | Link | N.B.: it should be noted
N.B.: it should be noted that body type is with you pretty much life-long, regardless of total weight: you can be very thin, very heavy or somewhere in between, you can be toned and work out faithfully, or not, but you will still be an hourglass, a triangle, a ruler, a pear or an apple. It's not a judgment, it's a shape. When my mother was a hundred pounds, she had a prominent belly; I've inherited her build, my sister didn't. So what sjbrodwall said, in spades.
Korry August 23rd, 2005 | Link | Yes, I am indeed the classic
Yes, I am indeed the classic hourglass. The straps stay put. I do have the shoulders. I could be a fullback...;)
Micki August 23rd, 2005 | Link | If you go to
If you go to they have a quiz to find out what shape you are, and recommend which of their clothes look best on you.
jlm August 24th, 2005 | Link | Thanks for all the great
Thanks for all the great info, folks! You all really know your stuff, and its great to be around such educated, articulate people here. Now I just have to do a bunch of measuring, and I'll know my shape,;).
QitelRemel August 27th, 2005 | Link | Of course, some damnfool
Of course, some damnfool "Thinspirational Speaker" (yes, there's a commercial diet which actually uses such blatant pro-ana terminology) who does a column in my local paper took this info and distorted it.  He described a healthy woman under this model as having Kirstie Alley's legs and hips...and Calista Flockhart's upper torso.  Calista bloody Flockhart. -Qit
beakergirl August 27th, 2005 | Link | Meaning, even if she COULD
Meaning, even if she COULD have children, she'd not be able to nurse them?

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