Why The Suspcicion Around Brandy's Weight Gain Is Symbolic of Our "Body Goals" Obsession

Brandy's interview with True Exclusives 
By Brenda Alexander

Brandy has always been thin. Like no curves, straight up and down, pencil thin. So when pictures of a relatively thicker Brandy started surfacing, people speculated she was pregnant. She denied she was with child but the rumors persisted, as if her added pounds couldn’t be voluntary, or something more serious like a medical issue. How rude?!

After so much talk, Brandy finally addressed her weight gain in a recent interview with True Exclusives and put the body shamers and social media thugs to rest. While explaining that after 7 years of going hard in the gym, rigorous tennis and boxing workouts and eating clean, Brandy had enough and wanted a “foodcation.”

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She expressed,
“I’m tired of this crazy discipline. I need something to eat. I want some pasta, I want some pizza, I want some cake. I want something other than salmon, broccoli and asparagus....and WATER!”
Brandy pre-weight gain
I feel you Brandy. Prior to starting with my personal trainer a little under a year ago, I hesitated because I knew I had to change my lifestyle. Now, I didn’t go as hard as Brandy by eating the same meal over and over again; but, there are major sacrifices you take to achieve complete wellness; and sweets, salts and almost all things good are what you have to give up on large consumption. It does pay off in your fitness results and overall energy you acquire as a result BUT it’s hard to get into the groove of things and stay so committed. Brandy’s dedication was definitely on a higher level than mine, and many others, and I can see why she needed a break. How she went from a strict diet to declaring her love for Wendy’s #10 with a large strawberry lemonade and apple pies from McDonald's on a daily is probably an adverse effect from the control she held for so long. After forbidding yourself the things you yearn for like that, of course she went crazy when she finally got a taste of the sweets!

Brandy out & about
But why is it that fans went into a frenzy when she started packing on a few pounds? Maybe it’s related to the idea that when we scroll through our social media feeds, our timelines are over-saturated with our favorite celebs and influencers killing it in the gym and posting vegan transition guides. And let’s not ignore that many of these knifed-up reality stars all have the same plastic surgeon and morph into a replica of each other with the same damn features: flat stomach, big ass, small waist and perky D’s in their swimsuit tops (I mean seriously, y’all do look the same).

There’s nothing wrong with working out and eating healthy. Studies show that a balanced diet and exercise have great benefits. But there is something to be said about having an ideal image of yourself that you in turn punish yourself from enjoying the plethora of foods around you - and you become manic if you miss one workout. There’s a reason it’s called a balanced diet. The torment we also put ourselves through by dreaming of having certain body parts because one of our faves is shaped that way is ridiculous. And, Brandy’s weight gain as a focal point of discussion for this long is problematic.

Speaking with my cousin about this, she shared the same thoughts.
“Being overweight (not that Brandy is) is seen as a bad thing or gives the idea that someone isn’t happy. If they were thinner, does that mean that person cares more about themselves? Overall, I think body image has changed so much over the years because people are embracing their curves and many steer away from the idea that skinny equals beautiful. But we spend so much time on looks and weight and it becomes a perception of value.”
Speaking more in depth about her weight gain, Brandy admits that she feels she does need to drop a few pounds but insists it’s more for reasons other than regaining her skinny frame. In fact, she wants the opposite. She says,
“My goal is to drop 15. I don't want to go back to that skinny Brandy that looked too skinny, I didn’t have any boobs or the butt that I have now. I want to keep some. I just want a flat stomach and that’s it.”
The Real co-host Jeannie Mai also recently revealed her own weight struggle, saying that she too possessed so much domination over her body and workouts that she maintain a tiny frame of 103 pounds for 12 years, suffering along the way. But now, Mai is also finding freedom in losing control, packing on a few pounds of muscle and enjoying everything she eats along this new fitness, carb-filled journey. I find it fascinating that across the spectrum, so many have similar experiences.

What about you? Do you have healthy body goals?
Brenda is a Philadelphia native with a love for Marketing, Creative writing, wine and Jesus. Her work has been featured on Mayvenn’s Real Beautiful blog and she is the co-author of the book Christmas 364: Be Merry and Bright Beyond Christmas Night (available for purchase on amazon). Follow her on IG @trulybrenda_ and trulybrenda.wordpress.com

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