Trying to lose weight for your wedding? Here are 5 Reasons NOT to

Guest post by Minerva Siegel
Think you need to lose weight for your wedding? Here are 5 Reasons NOT to
Riots Not Diets Resin Necklace

Everyone wants to look their very best on their wedding day, right? For some brides, this can mean beginning harsh diets, working out wildly, and trying desperately to lose all possible extra weight… but why are we trained to do this?

Here are a few reasons why you SHOULDN'T diet before your wedding:

Planning a wedding is stressful enough

Planning a wedding can be seriously stressful. There are so many little details that have to come together, and it's all so abstract and difficult to plan. Why on Earth would anyone want to take all that stress and multiply your crabby factor by a million by starting intense diets and exercising like whoa just before the wedding?

I'll admit that I started a diet just as I was starting to plan my wedding. I hopped on the bandwagon, and my then-fiancé essentially hated me for the two weeks I'd dieted. I was so angry and upset all the time. I'm a fat girl. I have an emotional need for sugar in my coffee, carbs on my plate, and the promise of a delicious dessert to come. Cutting those things out of my life combined with trying to plan a wedding made me into a monster woman.

Learn from my mistakes: for the sake of your relationship, if nothing else, just don't go there.

Think you need to lose weight for your wedding? Here are 5 Reasons NOT to
Minerva and Max! Photo by Cayan Ashely Photogaphy

Your partner loves you as you are

Your partner agreed/asked to marry you just as you are. Not ten pounds down from now, not a few dress sizes from now, but RIGHT NOW. This whole wedding is about you, your partner, and the love you have for each other.

It's so easy when wedding planning to lose sight of that, and to think of it as a big show you're putting on for all you friends and family; the biggest leading role of your life. Don't! Remember what it's all about and you'll find yourself less stressed and happier with the whole thing. Your partner loves the way you look. As long as you both are happy, don't bother with fad diets and exercising until you're sore and grumpy.

Think you need to lose weight for your wedding? Here are 5 Reasons NOT to
Photo by Cayan Ashely Photogaphy

Losing weight isn't the answer to getting over physical insecurities

If you're not happy with how you look, chances are you won't be any happier once you lose weight. Happiness is a state of mind, not a size. You can be happy, confident, and beautiful at absolutely any size — you just have to strive for body positivity and self-love. Your value doesn't increase as you lose weight; you're still the same person thinking the same thoughts with the same insecurities.

Losing weight isn't a fix-all for your physical insecurities — the cure lies in your mind. Work on stopping the negative talk about yourself. Stop thinking self-deprecating thoughts and bullying yourself. Chances are, you're your own harshest critic, and it's so important to drown out that Negative Nancy by filling your brain to the brim with positivity in preparation for your wedding day.

Dress alterations can get expensive AF

It's true. So many brides get on crash diets and lose weight and have to keep having their dress taken in more and more and more. Why spend so much on alterations when you can stay the way you are, be happy, and save money by not going wild with the plastic at the alterations check-out?

Think you need to lose weight for your wedding? Here are 5 Reasons NOT to
Photo by Cayan Ashely Photogaphy

Thinner does not equal “prettier”

You don't have to be thin to be pretty! Period. In our culture, advertisers have so brainwashed that thinner = prettier, when in reality, fat/chubby babes are just as lovely as smaller ones. Your weight has no effect on your innate beauty. Stop thinking that skinnier equals prettier, because it doesn't. Strive for giving yourself confidence, happiness, and gratefulness; those are qualities you should be worried about, not the number read-out when you step on a scale.

Planning a wedding is stressful. Instead of self loathing and suffering more, engage in self-care, body positivity, and cut out negative self-talk.

More body image real talk:

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Comments on Trying to lose weight for your wedding? Here are 5 Reasons NOT to

  1. Bravo! This is great. Can I also just say that I am digging the hell out of your awesome flamingo wedding garb? Too awesome!
    I can’t even tell you how many people asked me what my “wedding diet” was. When I told them “um … the same as my normal diet?” they looked genuinely confused as though I had no choice and being a bride meant going on a diet. It was really fun to answer the diet question with “Why? Are you saying I look fat?” and then watch people turn red and try to sputter their way out of the conversation.
    I also think it’s incredibly unfair that it’s the bride who gets the diet pressure. My husband and I could BOTH stand to lose a little weight. Yet he was never once asked if he’d be “getting in shape” for the wedding.
    What I tried to remember when this issue would come up or when I was having a day where I felt bad about myself was that my husband proposed to ME not my waist size. No matter what I look like on the outside he wanted to marry the person I am on the inside, and that’s what truly matters.

  2. Love this! I absolutely HATE the pressure brides are under to loose weight, and am SO glad that articles like these exist! I know way too many people who’ve gone of crash diets for their weddings, and then feel really shitty when the weight comes back (rather than blame the diet). My MIL was signing my SIL’s praises for “finally managing to lose weight” on one of those diets for her wedding this past June. I know when she puts the weight back on, the criticism will be incredibly harsh. I’ve tried pointing out to my MIL that the diet has poor long term effects, and that SHE WAS ABSOLUTELY FINE BEFORE, IT’S AMAZING SHE DOESN’T HAVE AN EATING DISORDER GROWING UP WITH YOU.

    Another thing to add for a reason NOT to lose weight; wedding dresses are the most flattering garments! Suits too!

  3. Bravo! My mom keeps pushing me to lose weight for the wedding like it’s a bloody religion, and I am going to send her to this article next time she says it. 🙂

    (although, I will admit I’m doing strength exercises as I prep for the wedding, not to lose weight but in hopes that it will stave off lower back pain and issues the day of, since I doubt I’ll get to sit down much. And also because sometimes that wedding planning stress only leaves me if I get sweaty and entirely focused on something else, aka crunches)

  4. I’m not fat. I’m not even overweight. I’m a 6ft (183cm) tall woman and weigh 176lbs (80 kg) and I also get the question when I’m going on a diet. And are looked at funny when I say I won’t.
    I think the whole point of this article is that you shouldn’t go on a diet just because you’re getting married.
    If you want to go on a diet do it because you want to go on a diet.
    A lot of brides are peer pressured into losing weight for the big day and that’s bullcrap!
    Being obese can be dangerous yes but a crash diet it not the best way. Losing weight takes time. A lot. Years. And setting a fixed goal is stress full during a very busy time. And that added stress is not healthy.

  5. I find this comment to be unnecessarily harsh and sincerely hope the “you”
    is being used in general and not aimed at the writer personally.

  6. Anybody got a good reference for an article detailing and debunking the common rhetorical moves that liv here is using? She’s really ticking off the boxes here. Here’s my translation of her post:

    “Seriously?! I sympathize and agree with you and we’re on the same side and everything, but honestly you are a bad human person who makes bad choices. Before anything else, I want to make sure you understand that I am allowed to judge you for your choices and/or body, because society/taxes/common good. I believe that the thing you don’t want to do is easy, so you have no reason not to do it. I refuse to admit that you could have any reason other than ease for rejecting the thing. I also trust that my body and experiences are the proper norm, so I am qualified to make judgments about what other people should do instead of trusting them to take care of themselves. I just want to help you – let me give you some shame thinly veiled as helpful information. Just a leetle bit of concern trolling. Hopefully, that shaming will help me prop up the current social order, in which my own “proper norm” status is more powerful. And by the way, I agree with you – I’m not advocating that thing you don’t like either.. Whoops, no wait, actually I am, but I’m also trying to set up the conversation so that if you argue with me I can gaslight you and tell you that you’re being “too sensitive” or taking it “too seriously.”

  7. You are correct. It has also been scientifically proven that men are naturally attracted to particular proportions in women, and it is not just the media pushing the idea that thinner is more beautiful. It is generally much unhealthier to be overweight and the new idea that it’s OK to be whatever size you want to be is incorrect. It is an unhealthy and wrong idea to push. No one says you have to be really thin, but being overweight is also not the way to be if you wish to live a long and healthy life. But you also shouldn’t want to lose weight just for a single life event; it is something you should push for and maintain over your lifetime.

    • Care to present that science? Because with out even trying I can pull up women’s proportions through art history and counter this fairly quickly. What is attractive is very very culturally based.

          • Yes, your one paper outweighs the many I could send you. Well played. Sigh!

            For one, I, and most scientists, would prefer the evidence presented by research which doesn’t analyse on the basis of artworks. 🙂

            Finally, that paper doesn’t say what you claim. It shows variation in the WHR, but it says chances of conception are affected by WHR changes.
            Attractiveness is also affected. I quote, “*Furthermore, even small variations of WHR (<0.05) are detected by men and influence women's attractiveness [54 , 55 * *]*”

            What that paper shows is that the media and mass media throughout history do not reflect people’s natural preferences, which I agree with, and is why I said no one is saying you have to be a stick thin model. WHR is, however, important.

        • please do then? I would also like to see the one where my physical attractiveness to men is essential for my long and healthy life span.

        • On second thought don’t. I don’t see either of us getting purchase here. You can keep being right about science and how it gives you and any one else the right to marginalize and silence me. I’ll keep being wrong about having a perfectly healthy lifestyle and body, also according to science, and all the virtue inherent there in.

  8. oh look, another concern troll. YOU DON’T HAVE TO BE THIN TO BE HEALTHY. Also, you honestly think my weight has a THING to do with my infertility? You’re literally coming for me like that right now? You don’t know anything about me. Get out of here with your toxic dialogue.

    • Ah, the typical 3rd wave feminist has come out of the woodwork with her “toxic dialogue”, which basically means “I want to shut down any sort of evidence based discussion because it hurts my precious feelings”.

  9. Well said. Your partner asked to marry you… YOU. You may be skinny, you may be fat, you may be tall, you may be short, as long as it’s YOU walking down the aisle to say yes.

  10. I wish this article had been out before my wedding on July 15th!!! And I planned and paid for my wedding mostly by myself. The original date had been Oct 15th, but due to a near death experience in the family, we changed the date in the middle of may.
    I had started a small diet shortly after we had first announced the engagement the christmas before the Oct 15th date. But I know I’m chubby, and I like my caffeine and my fatty foods. So I thought slowly cutting them out would be best road for me.
    Of course, disaster struck and I was rushing to finish everything for the wedding in 2 months. Not the best plan when you planned a outdoor boho theme with dozens of diy crafts.
    The last two months were awful, I went completely cold turkey for my diet and turned into a bride-zilla. My family hated me, my fiancé hated me, and when I looked in the mirror I was disgusted. Because I had set unrealistic expectations for myself and my pre wedding diet. Did I lose weight? Yes. But I was a cranky, miserable bride to be.
    Minerva you f**ING rock. And you were a damn gorgeous bride. And I am glad you figured it out before I did! I would have loved to take those two months back. I feel like I’d wasted so much of my time being angry and miserable. And not making the memories I should have.
    Btw, those pics!!!! Adorable.

  11. I’m so disappointed to see the body negativity comments on this site honestly. But beyond that I just want to say thank you for this article! I’ve been fat since I was two years old and never once tried to control my weight because I just always thought I couldn’t… and besides my doctors were always surprised at how normal all my blood work came back and I didn’t feel like I had less energy or more pain than my thin peers. Until the last few years when I started feeling really bad. About six months ago, I finally decided to at least start exercising regularly so I could rebuild my stamina and hopefully feel better. I’m amazed at how much better I do feel. But now that I’m engaged, I do have this weird voice in my head that’s trying to make me focus on the numbers on the scale and on the clothing tags instead of focusing on feeling good. It’s so bizarre that just because I have a day coming up in which I will stand in front of a lot of people and be photographed that I feel like I suddenly desperately want to be able to buy a dress 6 sizes smaller than usual. I plan on maintaining my exercise regime over the course of my engagement, but it’s really hard to keep myself in a healthy mentality about my body and it’s relationship to the size of dress I will buy!

    • I think it’s great that you used the word “maintain.” Maintaining the plan that you previously started is totally healthy and awesome because you’re doing it for the right reasons. Going into overdrive because of your wedding is both unhealthy and unnecessary. Your fiance loves you for YOU.
      Your family and friends love you for YOU. You will be beautiful on your wedding day 🙂

  12. Amen to all of this! I initially tried to lose weight for the wedding…but, then discovered the hard way that happy and hungry are mutually exclusive! From being so hungry, I became a…well, let’s just say the word starts with “b” and rhymes with “witch”. My husband wondered whatever happened to the drama-free, happy-go-lucky girl he fell in love with! Take my word for it that it doesn’t help your relationship. He became much happier when I ate normally and was my usual self.

    My pictures turned out beautiful, even if I wasn’t my absolute skinniest self for them. I can honestly say I wouldn’t change one thing about my wedding look–including my weight. Our love for each other just really shines through. Love is the most flattering look on anyone!

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