Seven-time Mr. Olympia champion Phil Heath: Why encourage people to think being morbidly obese and really unhealthy is a good thing?

Seven-time Mr. Olympia champion Phil Heath has expressed concerns about the body positivity movement, which promotes acceptance of all body types including overweight and obese individuals.

In a recent interview, Heath was asked for his thoughts on the movement that has seen magazines celebrate morbidly obese individuals on their covers under the guise of “body positivity.”

“I’m not a fan of this because I think why would you encourage people to think a morbidly obese and really unhealthy [body] is a good thing? Why celebrate it?” Heath questioned.

The bodybuilding icon argued that while he supports people loving themselves, he believes celebrating obesity is misguided and potentially dangerous from a health perspective.

“I think if we were to look at obesity and what it means, you know, health wise, looking at those blood markers, I think we would be able to see through blood work that they’re not as healthy as they seem,” Heath explained.

He expressed particular concern about obesity leading to serious conditions like diabetes, heart disease, and even limb amputations due to poor circulation.

“We don’t want heart disease. We don’t want high cholesterol. We don’t want the the A1C levels and all those things. We don’t want you to have to live off of, you know, we don’t want you to be in a hospital…I would hate to see that.”

The 7-time Olympia winner advocated for people to strive to be “the best version” of themselves from a health standpoint, while stopping short of saying everyone needs to attain his level of leanness and muscularity.

Heath’s comments are likely to reignite the fierce debate around the merits and potential dangers of the body positivity movement’s push for societal acceptance of obesity in the name of preventing body shaming.