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Why Gay Men Don’t Get Fat

Author Simon Doonan

UPDATE [1/5/2012]: Watch our hilarious video with Simon Noonan, author of Gay Men Don’t Get Fat

“Gay Men Don’t Get Fat” is the title of an as-of-yet published book by Barneys New York creative ambassador Simon Doonan. The author calls it “a stylishly slimming discourse that proves gay men really ARE French women: prone to disdain, favoring cheeky underwear, convinced of their own artistic brilliance, and (of course) calorie-obsessed.”

The French women reference, and title of his book, are both presumably a reference to the popular diet book “French Women Don’t Get Fat,” which espoused emulating French culinary culture to slim down.

Before we go any further, if Doonan wasn’t himself gay, I think he’d be treading on thin ice, you know, with the whole stereotyping thing. Gays and lesbians, like everyone else in the world, come in all shapes and sizes.

While I’ve had gay friends over the years, it’s difficult for me to speak with any authority about whether or not they are on average less fat than everyone else.

However, there is an undeniable sub-culture in the gay community that obsesses over their physique, which is the focus in “Gay Men Don’t Get Fat.”

What ultimately matters is have there been any scientific studies to back the idea of gay men being thinner than their hetero counterparts?

Last year, a study led by Kerith Conron, an associate research scientist at Northeastern University and a research fellow at the Harvard School of Public Health, came to the conclusion that, in fact, gay men are slimmer than heterosexual men. The same held true, flipped, for lesbians. That is, lesbians are on average heavier than their heterosexual counterparts. The researchers determined that gay men are 50 percent less likely to be obese.

Gawker columnist Brian Moylan suggests that gay men stay thin largely as part of a gay culture that includes fear of being “alone for the rest of their lives.” He also goes on to luridly state that gay men also tend to have open relationships, even if they get married.

The twist that I find interesting is that it seems logical that there may be an issue with eating disorders with gay men who may struggle with being shunned or outcast by the more conservative elements of our mainstream culture. However, according to a study from the University of South Australia, only 20 percent of all men who struggle with eating disorders are gay.

Since details of Simon Doonan’s book are few and far between, we’ll see what angle he takes. Most likely, it will be a little more light-hearted than some of the speculation.

(via: Gawker)

June 16th, 2011

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(Page 1 of 1, 13 total comments)


And all gay writers are repugnant poofters who bottom for loose change.

Are you an idioit or just addicted to stereotyping?

posted Feb 17th, 2012 3:25 pm


If 20% of men with eating disorders are gay, that's at least double the percentage that would reflect the proportion of gay men in society.

Surely that means that there are twice as many gay men as straight men with eating disorders. Otherwise the percentage would be about 10% (or less).

posted Feb 6th, 2012 12:13 pm


I'm gay, and not over weight. I'm very careful of what I eat--I eat my 5 servings of fresh fruits and vegetables every, excercise regularly, and spend a lot of time out doors, as do most of my gay friends. Of course, i also live in Colorado, the thinnest stte in the country, and very outdoors. Don't know if it has anything to do with the "gay scene" or not, or just the fact Coloradons are more likely to take care of themselves. Eating a healthy diet, and getting regular excercise. however, in my office, most of the gay men are thinner then the striaght men. Maybe it is also due to the fact we have more time to devote to ourselves?

posted Jan 28th, 2012 7:52 pm


I'm pretty sure we can all establish that assuming at homosexuality is not a deciding factor in weight, nor does being homosexual result in striving for a 'fit' physique. Doe this mean that this book is going to address the unfair association of homosexuality with good looks? Or is it simply going to reinforce the stereotype? And, if the latter is the case, why are we giving it any more attention that it was already given?

posted Jan 6th, 2012 5:21 pm


I'm athletic and lean and Gay. I am also a father of two teenage children. I am not part of any gay scene, in fact I have just one gay friend. Generalisations about gay men being less fat (and gay women being heavier) are completely irrelevent. People are people, all shapes, all sizes. Stop making up thories about what it means to be Gay. Being Gay is abount being human. it just is, it just will be - fat and thin.

posted Jan 5th, 2012 2:25 pm


was cute skinny twink thanks to meth and I am old fat and have really bad knees

posted Jan 4th, 2012 5:33 pm


Both you Jason and Simon are very foolish. Of course there is a subculture that focuses on having a muscular body that also happens to be gay - just like there are plenty of heterosexual bodybuilders. The numbers from these studies are conflated because of persistent self-esteem issues of what should be "desirable" when it comes to gay people; an issue whose root is extends far beyond us.

And John, don't tell us what we have to "do" simply because one person makes an idiotic generalization. Surprise, you just did.

posted Jan 4th, 2012 5:12 pm


lesbians are heavier than gay men

posted Dec 29th, 2011 8:59 pm


Simon Doonan is shallow and generalizing. I know many fat gay men and they are wonderful people. Gay community: Please EVOLVE.

posted Dec 28th, 2011 8:46 pm


Interesting.... any reason why lesbians are fatter (sorry... heavier) than hetero-females?

posted Dec 28th, 2011 7:22 pm


Ermmm better not tell the bears

posted Dec 7th, 2011 4:46 am


I'm a French gay man and I'm fat so I guess you're wrong.

posted Dec 1st, 2011 6:30 am


They stay skiinny by taking


posted Nov 17th, 2011 8:06 pm


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