While New Jersey resident Donna Simpson, 42, is on a mission to become the world's fattest woman, several other people who are also intentionally gaining weight are also making headlines. The Guardian's Lynda Cowell recently wrote of a few women who are purposely overeating. Some are doing so to buck traditional beauty standards or to feel liberated. Others gain weight simply because they want to do so.
A cornerstone of FA is the notion that diets don't work, and that many people naturally have fat bodies even if they eat as little, and exercise as much, as others who are thin. By consciously overeating to become fatter, gainers turn this idea on its head. Though they're probably a tiny percentage of all fat people... they may increase fat stigma by convincing the public that fat is, in some cases, a choice.
This may sound strange, but is it really? As North writes, "many claim that losing weight makes women 'feel sexier' -- is it any more unnatural if gaining weight makes some women feel sexy too?"
This actually makes a lot of sense to me. Though I'm now a size 10 when I was younger I was very thin and wished for a curvier body. I felt this would make me more of a woman and more desirable.
That said, I don't believe that anyone should risk their health gaining (or losing) weight to achieve some image of the perfect body. Simpson currently weighs over 600 lbs and will need to consume 12,000 calories per day to get up to her goal weight, which is about 1,000 lbs. She insists that she's healthy, but considering she currently needs a mobility scooter when she goes shopping, I doubt that's true.