Trainer and former Biggest Loser host Jillian Michaels has been slammed over ‘gross’ comments she made about pop singer Lizzo, who she says is ‘glorifying obesity’ and will ‘get diabetes’.
“You cannot glorify obesity,” Jillian said, repeating the same message she told the British magazine. “It’s dangerous. It kills people.”
At that point, host Alex mentioned body-positive “Juice” singer Lizzo who is well-known for “preaching self-acceptance” and celebrating different body types.
But Jillian wasn’t having it.
“Why are we celebrating her body? Why does it matter?” she jumped in.
“That’s what I’m saying. Like why aren’t we celebrating her music? ‘Cause it isn’t gonna be awesome if she gets diabetes,” she added.
“I’m just being honest. I love her music, my kid loves her music. But there’s never a moment where I’m like, ‘I’m so glad that she’s overweight.’ Like why do I even care? Why is it my job to care about her weight?” she finished.
When the clip was posted to the outlet’s Twitter account, many followers criticised Jillian’s remarks, branding them “incredibly gross” while others called out AM to DM for ‘amplifying’ her ‘disgusting’ comments.
This is incredibly gross.— Kelsey✨12/6 👼🏾 Dad (@KRileyTips) January 8, 2020
The only reason we know who Jillian Michaels is, is because of a reality show where people used incredibly unhealthy practices in order to lose as much weight as possible - not to become the most physically fit or to get the healthiest vitals - in a dangerously short time. +— Zoe (@Zoe_of_Elyon) January 8, 2020
JM has a lot to lose if people begin demanding we treat all bodies with respect. how come you’re the only one that gets to talk about bodies, J? your outdated, stigmatizing fearmongering is tired.— KathleenMeehan MS RD (@kathleenmRDN) January 8, 2020
While asking "why is it my job to care about her weight" you sure found a lot to say about her weight. And if you don't know that there are lots of fat people who never get Type II diabetes go to school and learn more before you suggest you can see Lizzo's future.— Silence=Death (@tapati) January 8, 2020
This is so gross that you would not only allow her on your platform but that you would amplify the disgusting thing she said here on Twitter. Shame on you— Brooke Obie (@BrookeObie) January 8, 2020
Actress and activist Jameela Jamil also piped up to reveal that her “whole damn thin family” had diabetes, telling Jillian to “get in the bin”.
Just saying... MY WHOLE DAMN THIN FAMILY HAS DIABETES AND HIGH CHOLESTEROL AND PROBLEMS WITH OUR JOINTS. Why is This woman acting like she’s an MRI? Stop concern-trolling fat people and get in the bin. 🚮 https://t.co/2fKVJrkWm3— Jameela Jamil 🌈 (@jameelajamil) January 8, 2020
A spokesperson for BuzzFeed News has since defended the interview in a statement supplied to Yahoo Lifestyle US.
“AM to DM is a live morning show that brings viewers unfiltered, revealing moments from guests. Alex's interview today did just that,” Matt Mittenthal said.
Later that same day, Jillian addressed the controversy on Twitter, urging people to ‘prioritise their health’.
“As I’ve stated repeatedly, we are all beautiful, worthy, and equally deserving,” she wrote.
“I also feel strongly that we love ourselves enough to acknowledge there are serious health consequences that come with obesity - heart disease, diabetes, cancer to name only a few. I would never wish these for ANYONE and I would hope we prioritize our health because we LOVE ourselves and our bodies,” she concluded.
AM to DM host Alex also took to Twitter to reveal that she was tempted to ‘defend’ Lizzo during the interview, and to thank viewers for “checking me on the conversation.”
What I was going to say here is that Lizzo has been incredibly important in giving so many of us a possibility model for accepting our bodies as we are and celebrating bodies that are normally ridiculed. Had to restrain myself from defending Lizzo's honor! https://t.co/UH2k5MulWo— Alex Berg (@itsalexberg) January 8, 2020
I just wanted to say: I really appreciate folks thoughts and checking me on the conversation. I'm reading through the comments and discussion, and wanted to acknowledge that.— Alex Berg (@itsalexberg) January 8, 2020
Additional reporting by Kerry Justich.
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