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Showing posts from June, 2018

Lipedema: My Story

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June is Lipedema Awareness Month. In lipedema, a fat storage disorder, an abnormal accumulation of fat develops in the legs and lower body, sometimes extending to the arms and other body parts as well. It is sometimes known as "painful fat syndrome" or "big legs syndrome." Although no one knows its true incidence, it has been estimated to affect up to 11% of women.

To raise awareness about this condition, we have been doing an periodic series about lipedema. Here is what we have covered so far:
Part One - Typical features of lipedema and how to differentiate between lipedema and lymphedemaPart Two - How lipedema progresses, the different stages of progression, and why it's so important to be aware of lipedemaPart Three - Types of fat distribution patterns, pictures illustrating type and stage of lipedema, how lipedema is diagnosedPart Four - Possible causes of lipedema, medical conditions often associated with itPart Five - Possible treatments for lipedema, broke…

No, we don’t have to enforce all the laws – we can’t

One of the ways people justify evil things while still believing that they themselves are good people is to hide behind the rules.  “Yes, it’s terrible that families are being separated, but those parents *broke the law.*”There are a thousand good counterarguments to that including that in many cases, no, they didn’t.  Seeking asylum is a protected legal right, even if a person came here illegally.  Not only that, but it’s illegal to punish an asylum seeker for coming in illegally if they can show good cause why they didn’t come the legal way.  Since the US has been sending asylum seekers away from official points of entry, and since the asylum application process at a US embassy can take years, it’s not surprising that people fleeing for their lives cross the border illegally.But apart from that, there’s a stunning hypocrisy when “law and order” people wholeheartedly support a president who’s claimed the ability to pardon himself, and who has pardoned a sheriff for flagrantly abusing…

Why Are Doctors Trying to Guess Fat Patients’ Weight?

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I refuse to be weighed in at the doctor’s office.  There is no medical reason to weigh me in – I haven’t had unexplained weight changes, I don’t need medicine that is prescribed per body weight, so I don’t need to be weighed.While I don’t think that weighing people is a medical intervention, the doctor does and therefore, like any medical intervention, I’m well within my right to refuse. If they had a good reason (ie: we have to dose this medication by weight) I would consider it. But since they just want to weigh me so that the can suggest that I try to change my weight – which is asking me to do something that nobody can prove is possible, for a reason that nobody can prove is valid, I’m out. For years this has been no problem, they say “step on the scale” and I, politely and firmly, say “no thank you” while I keep walking, slowing slightly to let them catch up after I pass them so that they can lead me to the exam room.But recently something weird has started happening. When I refu…

Lizzo & Mod Cloth Love

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Lizzo, “I think representation is my legacy,” she says, “and I think that everyone deserves to stand out. I think that everyone is beautiful, and everyone deserves to find their beauty… you’re worthy and capable of self-love, and it’s okay to be discovering that for your whole life.”Mod Cloth recently interviewed Lizzo and you should really read it (it’s brief) but also click here to see her in a gorgeous rainbow maxi dress!My love for Mod Cloth has been dotted with much disappointment, confusion, and occasional rage. Why do I keep coming back? Well, because they have items that suit my style, are quirky or just to find perfect thing to go with another thing that I already have. Often I cannot afford their clothes, but I love a good sale and I do occasionally treat myself to something nice. I was a sucker for their “Stylish Surprise” offers where you’d select, say, dresses and only your size and pay a flat rate ($15) and the dress you’d get would be randomly picked by them. This was s…

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Why I write so much about immortality, significance, and injustice.

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In the past couple of years, I’ve been more active on Twitter than here. But I miss being here. I want to round up my notes and do a little explaining.What follows are links to threads that seem relevant:Where I linked Terror Management Theory to diet culture (more) explicitly (than before.) This was the rough draft of the article that later appeared in The Atlantic.I'm currently knee-deep in assembling research about how "clean eating" and food anxiety is connected to the fear of death. Let's talk.— Michelle Allison (@fatnutritionist) October 18, 2016Where I shared my (sketchy and preliminary) thoughts about
neoreaction, politics in the US, and more Terror Management Theory. There was also a Metafilter thread about it, and people said nice things, which is particularly nice for reasons I don’t have the words for…yet. (You know me, it’s only a matter of time.)I've spent the last year and a half kicking myself for choosing terror management theory as a framework to…

Is It Wrong To Shame Shamers?

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Those who mistreat us often try to shield themselves from the consequences of their actions by trying to create a false equivalence between their mistreatment of us, and our speaking out against that mistreatment. So when someone says “Stop oppressing me. You are harming me.” the bigot will try to respond with something like  “Why are you shaming me? What about my beliefs? Where’s your tolerance, huh?”This is patently ridiculous, but it can still trip up otherwise rational critical thinkers because they DO want to be tolerant, and they DO want to be better people than their bigots. So let me be perfectly clear – “I want to oppress you”  and “I don’t want to be oppressed”  are not two reasonable sides of the same coin. They are not both legitimate viewpoints. Trying to oppress someone is not a viewpoint, it’s an act that harms someone.Do not let some troll tell you that calling out bullies makes you a bully. Calling out people for harming others is not remotely the same as perpetuating…

Ketogenic Diets and Lipedema: Apply Caution

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Sculpture by Madeleine-Marie Gautier
Be smart; do your research before jumping on the ketogenic bandwagonOne of the biggest trends in lipedema treatment world right now is the ketogenic diet. Folks in lipedema communities are all a-flutter over it, considering it practically a cure. There are tons of sessions about ketogenic diets at the lipedema conferences and it's being heavily promoted on lipedema websites and support groups.

I have decidedly mixed feelings about this. On the one hand, I'm a big believer in people being in charge of their own healthcare, and if this is something they want to try, it's okay with me. It's good to consider different therapeutic modalities. On the other hand, it bothers me to see people promoting it so strongly online, as if it is a proven therapy, as if it is a cure. It's NOT.

In fact, we have little actual evidence about ketogenic diets for lipedema, mostly just the word of a few doctors and therapists who believe it is "the an…