There are a particular set of defense mechanisms that seem to kick in when it comes to issues related to weight among African American women.
There are several things that we say to delude ourselves, which hurts our long term goals of fitness and good health:
- I am thick, not fat: This one is a euphemism often used to cover being overweight. The key here is that the waist size should be under control. So long as the waist is less than 35 inches you are safe from health issues.
- It’s not me it’s my genes: Fact is, very few of us actually have a predisposition to fatness. If we are overweight it is because of poor eating habits and inactive lifestyles. Telling yourself its genes is disempowering.
- It will mess up my hair: This has to be the lamest one; that sweating is not good for the hairstyle. There are many hairdos that can work even if you decide to hit the gym each day.
- Black women prefer curvy women: Sure they do; all men like women with curves. Here ‘curves’ is the operative word; women with a good hip waist ratio. You’re still talking small waist here because a thick waist means abdominal fat deposits, and danger for the pancreas.
- I don’t want muscles: Gymming is not tantamount to bulking up. Besides there are plenty of ways to stay in shape that do not involve bulking up.