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I don’t really listen to Drake but I had to borrow a line from his “Stay Schemin’” verse directed at Vanessa Bryant (“You wasn’t with me shooting in the gym”) because it perfectly illustrates my point in the ongoing did she or didn’t she have weight loss surgery debate. I don’t usually walk around defending celebrities either, considering they can always go cry in their money as one of my old editors used to say, but the celebrity weight loss shade is real—real ridiculous that is.

As I was reading over Chaka Khan’s interview yesterday I was surprised she mentioned people thought she had weight loss surgery. When she first made her big 60-pound reveal, Chaka hadn’t been seen for a hot minute so it wasn’t as though one day we saw her at a certain size and she was significantly lighter the next. Plus, most noted how fit she appeared to be and that’s not characteristic of people who have just gone under the knife. She’s since mentioned that she went vegan and credits her dramatic loss to the absence of meat from her diet but many are still assuming a surgeon was also present somewhere in this.

Fast forward to the post on Jennifer Hudson’s new clothing line and there was all kinds of shade unraveling about how her entire Weight Watcher’s 80-pound weight loss is a hoax. I expected side eyes at the thought of people wanting to dress like her but I thought all the nonsense over her having gastric bypass surgery was dead. Like Chaka, J-Hud didn’t pull one of those overnight size 16 to size 6 moves. It took her somewhere around a year to get those results, which is hardly how long it would take had she went the surgery route. In fact, she’s pretty much a model for healthy weight loss which should be achieved safely at two pounds per week.

What’s crazy to me is how people are calling her a fraud for being a Weight Watcher’s spokesperson and claiming that’s the only way she shed pounds. Um, how many of ya’ll were with her in the gym? Better yet, the hospital or the operating table where she supposedly had this surgery? People have gone so far as to say that she’s false promoting because she doesn’t acknowledge the exercise aspect of her plan that brought her to those results. I think everyone knows diet and exercise go hand-in-hand. Her job isn’t to sell treadmills, ellipticals, jump ropes or basketballs, she’s pushing the portion of her success story that relates to food which is the Weight Watcher’s meal plan. What’s fraudulent about that? And the point that she probably had a trainer whip her into shape (either in lieu of or in addition to surgery) is null and void as well because I’ve seen many an average woman shell out cash to have someone kick her butt into shape during 5 am workouts.

What’s even more crazy to me though is how people will see a random overweight black woman and say she needs to lose weight as if it’s as simple to do as letting the words come out of your mouth. Then when they see a celebrity who worked out and used a food program to drop pounds they assume it’s not possible and that she must have had surgery. And then when they hear Beyonce say she dropped 40 pounds in a few months eating lettuce and running on a treadmill they believe it and celebrate it as if that’s healthy. Where’s the logic in that?

On some level, I blame Star Jones for this. Her notorious denial of weight loss surgery has made every other weight loss success story after hers suspect from the gate because she kept up the charade for so long. But this is also just a classic case of people contradicting themselves and dare I say it, hating. Why is it women like J-Hud get beat on so hard for assumedly not being healthy and needing to lose weight, and then when they do it through sweat, tofu, and rice cakes, it’s assumed they took the easy way out? You can’t try to beat diet and exercise into one person’s head all day long as the magic pill for weight loss and then when another person gets the results they should from doing what was suggested, all of a sudden it isn’t possible? What’s so difficult about accepting and celebrating someone else’s triumph, and silencing the need to steal their shine?

The most interesting part is the critics are always people who’ve never known what it’s like to have to drop weight themselves. They’re speaking from facts they’ve heard or read, not from personal experience which is why they suggest someone just start walking 30 minutes a day as if that’s going to add up to a 3,500 calorie deficit that would yield them a one-pound weight loss. It’s the same reason they assume any celebrity who has gone from plus-size to average couldn’t have done it without a medical intervention: they don’t know what they’re talking about.

Speculating on celebrity weight loss is no different than commenting on other rumors about who they’re dating, sleeping with, or beefing with. We weren’t there, so we don’t know. Therefore there’s no reason to throw shade and assume the worst. If you hate celebs when they’re fat and find a whole new reason to hate them when they’re thin, how do they ever win?

Brande Victorian is the News and Operations Editor for Follow her on Twitter @Be_Vic.

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