Reflections, Commitments & Health at Every Size
At LK Nutrition, the Health at Every Size (HAES) principles have informed our model of care and our practice ethics. While there are valid critiques of HAES in its current iteration and conversations being held to address the flaws (e.g., its lack of intersectionality, inherent healthism, and the white washing of its messages) – the essence of HAES advocates for important concepts like respecting body diversity, and challenging harmful assumptions and biases in the healthcare field about weight and health. The HAES paradigm has undoubtedly benefited our practice, and our clients.
While HAES is trademarked by an organization called ASDAH (Association for Size Diversity and Health), Lindo Bacon, a thin white clinician, author and researcher, has been one of the most visible, vocal and public advocates of HAES.
Multiple people (Marquisele Mercedes, Lindley Ashline, and others) have recently come forward sharing disturbing interactions and harm they've experienced from Lindo Bacon. Below are the relevant articles for more context:
After learning about what’s happened, our practice has been trying to reconcile what this means for all of us – collectively as a group, as individual practitioners with different identities and levels of privilege, and for our clients. We’ve been grappling with a lot of questions and feelings. Feelings like anger, fear, sadness, pain, frustration and uncertainty. This situation brings up a lot that points to where the work still is for us.
As Marquisele Merecedes wrote, “Yes, it’s about Lindo, but it’s also a lot bigger than them...”
In the spirit of transparency and continued accountability to minimize harm in our own practice – specifically around anti-Blackness and anti-fatness – below are the actions we are taking at LK Nutrition:
Practicing nutrition counseling through a size inclusive lens that respects body diversity and doesn’t collude with diet culture
Investing in resources and attending trainings that center fat and Black voices
Seeking out paid consultation from fat and Black educators/consultants
Building relationships with fat and Black providers in our professional community (and referring to them to meet client needs)
Looking for opportunities to advocate for fat and Black liberation in our field
Developing a system for identifying the safety of a provider before referring out
Attending educational trainings through ASDAH and other organizations that center the perspectives of those with marginalized identities
Dedicating time for ongoing conversations within our team to discuss how anti-Blackness, anti-fatness, racism, and other forms of systemic oppression are showing up in our space (along with how to respond to it)