Two-thirds of women in the UK apparently meet the profile of the archetypal overweight female, according to a YouGov survey commissioned by weight loss group Slimming World.
The survey of 2,257 people, of which 1,467 were deemed to be overweight, found fat people struggled with their emotions in at least five everyday situations, such as looking in the mirror and at holiday snaps, seeing old friends, trying clothes on in a shop, and getting dressed for a night out.
Slimming World spokeswoman Caryl Richards said: "Mrs Average faces a constant daily battle with her emotions, as failed diets and a desperate desire to lose weight cause a crisis of confidence, turning a string of everyday situations into sources of embarrassment, humiliation and dread."
With two out of three people in the UK overweight or obese, according to Slimming World, "the majority of the population is now trapped in this emotional cycle of daily humiliation, embarrassment and dread".
The survey found men reported more positive responses in everyday situations, but still used the word "fat" to express how they felt in two out of five circumstances.
In contrast, the 790 healthy weight people who took part in the survey reported positive answers in every situation.
To win the battle of the bulge, Ms Richards said a good support network was key. She said: "It's about tapping into the power of a group to positively influence individuals to make healthy new choices and lifestyle changes that are often too difficult to make on your own."