Since "fat" can be used as a noun, "You are not fat" with fat being used as a noun would still be grammatically correct wouldn't it?

Because you can say "You are not ice." or "You are not glue." or "You are not lava." Meaning you are not the noun in the sentence. Do you need to specify with an article and say "You are not the fat"?

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    It will depend on the type of noun you are using. Nouns like ice, glue, and lava are noncount, which is related to why they don't require an article before them. – pyobum Apr 8 '15 at 1:51
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    @StoneyB At least in abstract terms, I can think of an example of a person (at least indirectly) being referred to as "fat." John: I can't believe I lost my job. And the arrogant CEO described the layoffs as just "trimming the fat." Sue: You're not fat. You'll find a better job. – pyobum Apr 8 '15 at 2:05
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    @pyobum I was asking in seriousness. – user18696 Apr 8 '15 at 2:07
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    You need to incorporate a context -- @pyobum's example would do, or a longer citation of your original source -- in which using You are not fat has some colour of rationality. The use of articles is driven by discourse context, so your question is essentially meaningless as it stands. – StoneyB Apr 8 '15 at 2:13
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    Much of the discussion above notwithstanding, the OP asked perfectly clearly whether or not "You are not fat" is grammatical with fat being a noun. That it would be less common than if fat were used as an adjective, that arguably only makes it a more interesting question. It's hard to see how it can be deemed "primarily" a question about articles, and therefore how it could be a duplicate of such a question. – Jim Reynolds Apr 8 '15 at 8:29

You are not fat.

The sentence is in the pattern of be + adj. You can form sentences with be + noun such as "you are a boy/you are not a boy" (countable singular noun). So the OP's sentence presented above, though funny and nonsensical, is grammatically correct with the word "fat" used as a noun. You don't need to put the definite article "the" before this uncountable noun in this sentence. I don't mean that you cannot put "the" before an uncountable noun. You can do so when you want to specify it. Look at the following examples: I have money. I have spent the money you gave me. I have drunk the milk I bought yesterday.

  • It will be nice of you if you tell us the reason for this downvote. – Khan Apr 8 '15 at 3:34
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    I wouldn't downvote it, but I'd point out that if fat is a noun, it's not in the pattern of be + adj. – Jim Reynolds Apr 8 '15 at 8:22

Yes, you can use "fat" as a noun without an article. The word "fat" can be countable or uncountable, depending on the usage. In everyday speech, it's uncountable, and refers to body fat in animals, both the kind in our bodies and the kind in meat. Here's an example referring to food:

Most people eat too much fat.

And here's one referring to humans:

These biceps and triceps exercises will help you get rid of arm fat and tone sleek muscles.

In chemistry, "fat" is often countable, and refers to a type of molecule:

A fat (or oil) is formed when three fatty acid molecules react with a glycerol molecule to yield a triglyceride (and three water molecules).

Here's another countable example from a cooking site:

One of the most important things you'll want to consider when picking out a fat is smoke point.

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