whatblackmenwant
…Inside The Black Man's World
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June 1, 2012

Killer Curves: Black women and Weight Loss

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I love women of all shapes and sizes, but I am particularly fond of women with meat on their bones. Whether you want to call them curvy, thick, voluptuous or whatever the endearing term of the moment is, that’s generally what I find myself attracted to. Anyone who follows my Tumblr, Sistas Are Sexy, could tell you that.

Ever so often, a woman whom I already consider attractive will tell me that she’s trying to lose some weight. While I’m always supportive of their efforts to be healthier and improve their self image, I’ll generally smile and say something to the effect of “don’t lose too much.” A few weeks ago a friend sent me a link to a New York Times editorial by Alice Randall. In the provocatively titled “Why Black Women are Fat,” Randall takes a holistic look at the reasons why Black women are generally heavier than their Caucasian counterparts. She talks about praying for “thick thighs” like her dance instructor as a little girl. But this was the most revealing passage for me:

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“How many middle-aged white women fear their husbands will find them less attractive if their weight drops to less than 200 pounds? I have yet to meet one.

But I know many black women whose sane, handsome, successful husbands worry when their women start losing weight. My lawyer husband is one.

Another friend, a woman of color who is a tenured professor, told me that her husband, also a tenured professor and of color, begged her not to lose “the sugar down below” when she embarked on a weight-loss program.

That passage really hit home for me. The article gives statistics stating that Black women have a 51 percent higher obesity rate than Caucasian females. And we all know obesity leads to further health issues, particularly diabetes.

In this day and age of self-sufficient, independent women, I think we as Black men have really underestimated the effect of our words on Black women. And it just may be killing them, literally. There’s nothing wrong with liking a big butt and a smile, but if the women in your life mean more to you than just objects of lust, I’m sure you’d much rather them be slightly slimmer and healthy instead of thicker and fighting for their lives. Besides, there is nothing in the world more sexy than a woman who feels like she looks good.

As a curvy connoisseur, the next time a woman tells me they’re ready to fight the bulge, I’ll be there to cheer them on with no if’s, and’s or butts about it!

Missed my last post: Being Black Got You Confused? Help Is On The Way!



About the Author

sgaither
Award-winning college journalist. Serial Blogger. Old School R&B fanatic. Stonecold Gentleman.




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One Comment


  1. I loved this! I’ve been overweight and out of shape almost my entire life, but oddly enough, family members and interested men never referred to me as “fat”. It’s been about 10 months since I’ve embarked on my road to fitness and better health. Regardless of what “society” deems as sexy, all people, but especially black women (who represent a disproportionately high number of America’s obese population) should focus on health first. Disregard the media’s definition of health, the optimal weight dictated by the BMI scale (since it does not take into consideration women of color who tend to be curvier and weigh more) and focus on body fat percentage & lean body mass. Healthy is the new sexy.



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