I’m a vegetarian. Have been for about 12 of the last 15 years.
In case it isn’t abundantly clear at this point, I am also fat.
These two things are not mutually exclusive, no matter how much people try to make them be.
Being vegetarian or vegan (shortened to veg*n) is not an express ticket to thinness. Not because of the crap you so often hear about how you can sit around and eat junk no matter what. That’s a fatphobic response to the existence of fat veg*ns. No, the reason meatlessness isn’t a ticket to Thinland is that there is no ticket to Thinland unless you already live there. Long term weight loss is not possible for the vast majority of people. You may visit Thinland, but eventually you’ll leave, and each time you do it you’ll be sent farther away.
Fat veg*ns exist for the same reason fat meat eaters exist: we just do. Some people happen to be fat no matter what, and there’s nothing wrong with that.
I’m more than happy to discuss a plant-based lifestyle as an ethical choice, an environmental choice, or as a weight-neutral health choice. Those are all very important arguments to have, and ones that need to keep happening in inclusive and respectful ways. Let’s talk about carbon footprints, the human rights abuses of slaughterhouse workers, the environmental impact of ranching, or the various ways to get all essential nutrients from a meatless diet. I’m also very, very happy to share delicious recipes and restaurant recommendations. But I’m not ever going to be here for using “obesity” as a reason more people should go veg.
And of course, I’d be remiss if I wrote about this without addressing PETA. Screw PETA. They’re sexist, racist, and fatphobic in their ads, they harm/kill more dogs than they help, and their attention-grabbing tactics are more likely to make animal rights activists look terrible than they are to win anyone over.
I do think more people should go veg. It would have a huge positive impact on the world if that happened. But it has nothing to do with weight.