Japan Introduces Term “Marshmallow Girls” To Combat Fat-Shaming

It’s no secret that the pressure to be thin is one faced by many woman. A simple flip through your average Vogue is enough to get the point across: society tells us skinny is pretty and fat is not.

Even worse, any woman in Japan will tell you that their pressure is far greater. Apparently a chubby figure (much smaller than what we consider obese here in the U.S.) is not acceptable.

As a result, some in Japan have tried to counter this perception of chubby girls. A magazine called La Farfa was created and features only plus-sized women. It is an effort to show Japan and the world that plus-sized girls are beautiful as well.

Recently, the magazine called one of its models, Goto Seina, a “marshmallow girl.” The magazine has since been advocating for the term and claims that it hopes the nickname will change the general perspective on chubby girls.

The aim of the new nickname is to associate chubbiness with cuteness instead of the negative connotations of a nickname like “fatty.”

While the new term inches its way towards viral popularity, netizens seem torn on the issue. Some claim that the term is much more user-friendly and “you’re a marshmallow girl” creates a much cuter image than harsh terms like “you’re a fatty” or “you’re a pig.”

Others claim that its association to food is problematic. One commented on JapanCrush.com, “How about just calling them “pizza girls”?”

Some netizens want nothing to do with the confusing issue and refuse to recognize the issue at all. They simply say women should just lose weight and that’s that.

Let us know what you think. Will “marshmallow girls” be a productive method of combating fat-shaming?

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That Fitness Mom With The Controversial Photo? She’s Still Not Sorry

A few days ago, we showed you Maria Kang. The 32-year-old, half Malaysian Chinese and Filipina mother of three was bombarded with reactions for a picture of herself in a sports bra and short shorts, surrounded by her three young sons. A caption reading “Whats your excuse?” sparked a fire of online debates questioning whether or not the image was insulting. The online debate exploded even more once Kang decided to repost her image with a “non-apology” as seen below:

I’m sorry you took an image and resonated with it in such a negative way. I won’t go into details that I struggled with my genetics, had an eating disorder, work full time owning two businesses, have no nanny, am not naturally skinny and do not work as a personal trainer. What I WILL say is this. What you interpret is not MY fault. It’s yours. The first step in owning your life, your body and your destiny is to OWN the thoughts that come out of your own head. I didn’t create them. You created them. So if you want to continue ‘hating’ this image, get used to hating many other things for the rest of your life.”

Just about everyone felt the need to put in their two cents on the matter. In fact, even our own readers had conflicting opinions about the issue.

One reader commented, “I do think that caption is kind of aggressively presumptuous. “Excuse” has a negative connotation. I mean, I don’t feel like anyone deserves an apology for her ad, but I see where people would feel unprecedentedly challenged in the way she presents her achievement.”

Another reader saw no problem in the photo at all. He wrote, “Why are people offended by “What’s Your Excuse?” All of the negative comments revolve around how people don’t always have the same goals, or don’t WANT to look like this, etc. Well then great, why be upset if this doesn’t apply to you? Move on. People are stupid.”

Regardless of the positive or negative comments, Kang was clearly not phased. Kang made an appearance on Today and voiced her opinion that she still has nothing to be sorry about.

Kang says that she knew it would be a powerful image despite its criticism. Kang claims that the amount of people who disagree with the image is a small 20% while the rest are inspired. When asked if she would change the caption if she could go back in time, Kang replied that even another caption would spark that same debate. “It’s really, again, that dialogue that’s happening in that persons head.” she explains. While she says she’s aware of why some people were insulted by the picture, she confidently says, “I think the majority of people saw it as inspiring.”

Watch the interview below:

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Asian Mother Refuses to Apologize for Controversial Photo

Mother of three and fitness enthusiast Maria Kang posted a picture of herself and her children on facebook last year. The 32-year-old, half Malaysian Chinese and Filipina mother brought attention to her body in the picture. The inclusion of her sons emphasized that even after giving birth, this mom is fit. Wearing only a sports bra, she revealed her incredibly toned abs and trimmed figure.

The former pageant queen, fitness competitor and founder of the nonprofit Fitness Without Borders, achieved her look by working out five to six days a week. She structured her time to allow for consistent work-outs between raising three kids and keeping her job. Clearly, this hard work deserves some applause, but her controversial photo made the public view her in a different light.

It wasn’t the children or the abs which caused the public controversy. It was the caption above her head which said “What’s your excuse?” that caused the downpour of both positive and negative comments.

Some people considered her an inspiration and applauded her for being proud of what she worked hard to achieve. Others felt that the comment rudely assumed that people make excuses for weight gain. They argued that there are various reasons for weight gain and by not being sensitive to those issues, Kang was being obnoxious and pretentious.

A year after posting her controversial photo, Kang noticed that it was going viral once again and this time, many more negative comments were being thrown her way. She decided to re-post the picture with an “apology,” but admits that it’s actually a “non-apology.”

“I’m sorry you took an image and resonated with it in such a negative way,” she wrote. “I won’t go into details that I struggled with my genetics, had an eating disorder, work full time owning two businesses, have no nanny, am not naturally skinny and do not work as a personal trainer,” she wrote, in part. “What I WILL say is this. What you interpret is not MY fault. It’s yours. The first step in owning your life, your body and your destiny is to OWN the thoughts that come out of your own head. I didn’t create them. You created them. So if you want to continue ‘hating’ this image, get used to hating many other things for the rest of your life.”

As expected, she was showered with even more negative comments than before. The picture, which has been shared over 13,000 times and has nearly 18,000 comments, was swarmed with angry comments for her “non-apology.”

Yahoo reports, “That post brought a frenzy of negative responses, including, “Those precious little things need their mommy more than they need you to have glamour muscles,” “Not that I *NEED* an excuse for not working out, but here’s mine you self-righteous idiot … fibromyalgia,” “You are part of the body shaming problem that is going on in North America and other parts of the world,” and “You are a bully with a super inflated sense of your own self.”

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Others have been rising to her defense and claim that she has no reason to say sorry anyway.

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Kang doesn’t seem to be phased by any of this. “I wanted to inspire people,” she explains, “I wanted to say, ‘I know you think you don’t have time if you have kids. But if I can do it, you can do it, too.’”

(source)