In the 11 years I’ve been working full time, I’ve been pretty lucky. I’ve never really felt bullied (okay, maybe by my second boss to a degree, but that’s another story for another time). But then, for the first time, I actually heard what could be perceived as bullying right in front of me.
My colleague was eating 4% Siggi’s low-sugar yogurt. Now, I understand most people don’t understand how these percentages work with dairy fat, but in general, 1% is like water, 2% is considered like half the fat, and 4% is considered nearly full-fat yogurt. 0% – don’t even get me started. It sticks to your throat, is super dry, and makes you feel like you are gagging for air once you are done eating it. If you eat that, we just can’t be friends. If I am eating yogurt, I try to eat full fat or low fat. Milk was never meant to be defatted, so why are thinking we are eating natural foods when happily consuming 0% fat yogurt or milk? Gone are the days when fat was demonized (hello, 90’s). Today, everyone is still stupid and wrong, demonizing carbs, whole wheat and grain, and ignorantly and blindly favoring gluten-free diets to the detriment of their well-being whether they are aware of it or not.
Anyway, so my colleague had a mean girl approach her in the office, who went on and on and on about how she had no idea how anyone could eat 4%. “Four percent fat? That’s so gross!” she squealed in her mean girl tone. “That’s like, so much fat. That’s like eating half and half in a cup. It’s not healthy.”
I just couldn’t handle it anymore and had to step in. Once people start demonizing food, I have to stand up for… well, food. “Well, actually if you really think about it, ‘healthy’ is subject to change,” I interjected. “Fat is not necessarily evil in itself. And if you think about it, 0% milk is just not… natural? Shouldn’t we be eating whole food in their whole form to reap all the nutritional value?”
My colleague eating the yogurt was quiet, but finally also made another good point: oftentimes food that is lower fat or low fat makes up for that lesser flavor by adding more sugar and salt. That isn’t good all around. So regardless, you’re not really doing your body any favors by eating a low- or no-fat anything.
I’m not a fan of people food-shaming or body-shaming. Someone needs to stand up for those who are too nice to speak up for themselves.