[This episode is part of the Health and Wellness Changemakers Series, our collaboration with Shohreh Davoodi's Redefining Health and Wellness Podcast. This post is cross-posted from Shohreh's website.]
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The first time I heard the phrase “thin privilege,” I had a visceral negative reaction to the idea that my body type offered me any sort of advantage. And that’s because I had received messages my whole life that thin bodies were “earned” and that anyone could have one if they just worked hard enough. What I didn’t realize at the time is that those messages were steeped in weight stigma.
Now I know better, but I understand if your instinct is to get defensive about this topic. If you’re feeling on edge, I recommend taking some deep breaths and then wading into the discomfort of this episode anyways. What registered dietitian Kimmie Singh has to say about thin privilege and fat oppression might surprise you.
Kimmie talked to me about her experiences as a fat dietitian of color and pointed to some areas where practitioners with privilege can better support more marginalized practitioners in the Health At Every Size® and anti-diet space. We also talked about PCOS, which Kimmie has personal and professional experience with, and why weight loss and restrictive diets aren’t the answer to managing it.
Discussed in this episode:
- How Kimmie got into dietetics and the Health At Every Size® movement.
- Kimmie’s experiences with anti-fat bias in her dietetics training, including on the very first day of the first nutrition class she ever took.
- How she was ultimately able to work with some professors in her program to get changes made, including the addition of a Health At Every Size® internship rotation at her alma mater.
- What it’s been like for Kimmie working in the intuitive eating and HAES® world as a fat dietitian of color.
- What thin privilege is, and the fact that it exists because fat oppression exists.
- How Kimmie recommends HAES® professionals and people in general with thin privilege can do a better job of making sure that there’s room for marginalized voices.
- The importance of being honest about it when you don’t know something or haven’t lived something.
- The need for professionals to opt into supervision/consulting since no matter how nice and friendly we are, we may still be causing harm.
- How the anti-diet movement feels different for people of color than it does for white people.
- What Polycystic Ovarian Syndrom (PCOS) is and how it’s diagnosed.
- Kimmie’s personal experiences with PCOS.
- Why weight loss isn’t the answer to PCOS management.
- How to manage your PCOS through intuitive eating without restricting your food intake.
- How Kimmie defines health and wellness for herself at this moment in her life, including feeling empowered and not trying to be perfect.
Mentioned in this Episode:
- Weight-Inclusive Medical Care with Jess Campbell | #23
- Lindley Ashline’s Instagram feed where she has a recurring series about thin privilege and what it looks like.
- Kimmie’s Instagram story highlight about thin privilege.
- The anonymous blogger Your Fat Friend who can also be found on Twitter and Instagram
- Monique Melton’s Instagram post about how diet culture is anti-blackness
- WIND – Weight Inclusive Nutrition and Dietetics
- Veronica Garnett, a HAES® and fat-positive dietitian
- Fearing the Black Body by Sabrina Strings
- White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo
- Julie Duffy Dillion, a dietitian who specializes in PCOS
- Diabetes Myth Busting with Lauren Newman | #22
- The PCOS and Food Peace podcast co-hosted by Julie Duffy Dillon and Kimmie Singh
This Episode is Part of the Health and Wellness Changemakers Series
Sponsored by Superfit Hero
If you enjoyed the Superfit Hero Wellness Tip of the Week with Abbey Griffith from Clarity Fitness, be sure to check out the dozens of amazing coaches and trainers in Superfit Hero’s Body Positive Fitness Finder.
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Kimmie Singh is a fat Registered Dietitian based in New York City. She is an associate at LK Nutrition, a Health at Every Size® private practice that supports clients with eating disorders and disordered eating to heal their relationships with food and body. Kimmie specializes in providing support for PCOS management and presents and consults on weight stigma in healthcare and dietetics training. You can find Kimmie on her website, Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
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