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HealthNotDiets Digest, Issue 39, 2019

October 25 - November 7, 2019

As always, if you like what you read here, please support the original author by liking/sharing/following/up-voting/subscribing directly to their feed.

Happy reading!


Articles & Blogs

Heed the lessons from the pelvic mesh scandal

by Amy Coopes

“Thakar also stressed the importance of patient involvement in medical innovation, not just at the point of trial and rollout but from the earliest stages of conception.She called for consumer representation at every level of medical governance, whether committee, council or board."


A dietitian's guide to raising a body-positive child

by Emily Fonnesbeck

“In the appearance-obsessed culture we live in, raising a body-positive child takes intentional work and effort. Helping a child respect and feel confident about his or her body is no small feat, but it’s definitely possible.”


Why the Anti Diet Riot Club is the perfect antidote to diet culture

by Laura Hampson

“Not everyone will love their bodies because the world makes that pretty difficult, and even if you do have positive body image it won’t be every second of every day. But accepting that we have worth and value that go beyond our bodies can hopefully stop us crumbling into tears if we don’t fit in a piece of clothing.”


Intuitive Eating Is Transformative and Also Not as Intuitive as It Sounds

by Lauren Strapagiel

“I was immediately intrigued by the notion that my body could feed itself without heavy-handed intervention, and within a few minutes of reading the [intuitive eating] article I’d made an appointment with a local intuitive eating counselor in Toronto. It turns out, though, that I’d just signed up for something much bigger than a diet tweak.”


Seeing a GP during school lunch: Clinic opens next door to classrooms to help students

by Jessica Hinchliffe

“Adolescence is the time when many adult physical and mental health problems begin to emerge, and yet young people aged 12 to 17 are the least likely of any age group to see a GP”


On Balance

by The Angry Chef

“The erosion of truth and the rejection of expertise happened in food long before it did in other walks. People pushing restrictive diets, or selling demonised products like meat and dairy, will always try and persuade us that the authorities are lying, because that gives them space to hawk their products.”


13 Things Your Plus-Size Guests Want You to Know This Holiday Season

by Rebecca Alexander

“since chances are you have at least one plus-size friend or family member on your invite list, I’ve got some easy-to-follow tips so you can make sure they feel welcome around your table and in your home this [holiday season]."


How to Support Your Fat Friends, as a Straight Size Person

by Your Fat Friend

“I felt a wave of relief and sudden, defiant freedom. Someone else had noticed this bizarre display, this strange performance of thin piety and virtue. For once, someone else had found it ridiculous, laughable, strange, unsettling."


On (Re)Producing The Fat Stigma You Claim To Be Fighting

by Cat Pausé

“this suggested language change is based on the idea ‘obesity’ is a disease to be cured and fat people are not a natural part of the world. This serves to reinforce stigma, rather than prevent it.”


Why don't fictional characters ever have their period?

by Vivienne Pearson

“My daughter is heading into puberty. We’re both keen readers, so I went in search of books that might help her (and me) with the milestone of menarche - her first period."


Searching for a happy ending – the impact of the NDIS on people with rare diseases

by Angela Jackson

“more people in Australia have a rare disease than have diabetes"


How to Un-Diet as a Family

by Charlotte Markey

“Develop a healthy relationship with food – for your sake and for the sake of your family.”


Embracing ugly in a world that’s tried to weaponize it against me

by Vanessa Rochelle Lewis

“I had to understand and then believe that oppression, and especially internalized oppression, is real and not just a theory or concept."


The Cowpea: A Recipe for Resilience

by Michael W. Twitty

“Pot after pot, I was drawn into story after story, starting with my mother on a Cincinnati stoop and on to her mother in a Birmingham kitchen, and before her a sharecropper’s shack, and before then the bottomlands of a rural Alabama plantation, and prior, a garden in Virginia or the Carolinas.”


'It’s medically sanctioned violence and torture': Intersex patients call for end to genital surgeries on children

by Nara Schoenberg

“The surgeries are almost always cosmetic and medically unnecessary.”


'One day, tired of all the teasing, I stopped wearing bathers'

by Clare Bowditch

“my body has continued its dance up and down the scales, yet I no longer think of its waxing and waning as a thing I did wrong. Instead, I think of my body as a walking, talking piano accordion, just here, playing its song.”


Body Positivity Is Lost on YouTube

by Virginia Sole-Smith

“Smartphones have turned self-objectification into a competitive sport. And they’ve blurred the lines even further between objectifier and object”


Why spacesuit design choices — not women’s physiques — delayed the first all-female spacewalk

by Loren Gush

“Perhaps the fundamental flaw that has hindered women’s abilities to perform spacewalks is a lack of suits that fit them”


What Happens When Women Start Taking Up Space?

by Danielle Friedman

“No matter how outwardly liberated a woman is, she will be oppressed as long as she is consumed by trying to contain her body."


Clothing the Fat Body 101

by Amelia Mitchell

“A Primer for straight sized and small fat people, especially HAES therapists, dietitians, counselors, and other clinicians working with clients in large bodies.”


Survival at ‘overweight’ BMI surpasses ‘normal’

by Mitchel L. Zoler

“Despite recent data consistently showing better survival among people with a BMI of 25-29 kg/m2, panels that have recently written weight guidelines are “ossified” and “refuse to accept” the implications of these findings”


Research & Clinical Practice

Pediatric Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery: Evidence, Barriers, and Best Practices

by National Eating Disorder Association (NEDA)

American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP):

*Bariatric surgery for kids seems great and is low risk*

National Eating Disorder Association (NEDA):

*Hold up, this is a supremely bad take, you actually need evidence to support your claims, here are some receipts indicating you need to revise your statement*

Here’s NEDA’s response to the AAP position statement...


Soapbox & Shareables

Independent Infants

by SBS Australia

Would you let a two-year-old choose what goes on their plate? These toddlers have been peeling their fruit, choosing their portion sizes and assisting in clearing the table after their meal.

Excellent initiative 😍😍


I got some awesome news late last week that I had to keep to myself until today -

I've been elected to the Dietitians Association of Australia (DAA) Board of Directors for 2020-2022!!

I can't wait to direct my energy towards strengthening the organisation that represents the profession that I believe in so deeply.


Unpacking Weight Science Podcast

How about bite-sized podcasts that you can claim as professional development?!?

I've designed the Unpacking Weight Science Podcast to suit health professionals, health science students and anyone who wants to know more about human body weight, health outcomes, interpreting weight related research and the far ranging effects of weight bias.

The 20-30 minute monthly podcasts unpack different elements of weight bias & stigma, weight research, BMI, health behaviours and weight neutral approaches. Paid subscribers (only $5/month!) get instant access to all previous episodes plus full show notes, reference list, self-test quiz and resource materials for use in practice for recent episodes. This equates to an hour of professional development activity each month :-)

Available for subscribers now is:

'Leave them kids alone!

The problems with weight loss programs for teens'

Unpacking Weight Science Podcast Episode 28 is out now! The past year or so has seen the re-emergence of commercial programs and research studies that aim to make larger-bodied kids smaller in the name of ‘health’. In this episode I’ll be looking at the growth trajectories of larger-bodied kids, the links between weight loss efforts and height and weight growth, and psychological factors that need consideration in this vulnerable group of people.

Subscribe now at:

and instantly access 22 episodes before the rest of the world!

Episodes 1-5 are now on iTunes!

Search 'Unpacking Weight Science'

to listen to them for free!


Training Opportunities in 2019


The Non-Diet Approach for Dietitians (2 day workshop)

Fremantle, Western Australia, 26-27 June SOLD OUT

Auckland, New Zealand, 7-8 October SOLD OUT

Melbourne, Victoria, 12-13 October SOLD OUT

Newcastle, New South Wales, 21-22 November

Body Positive Counselling (1 day workshop)


Perth, Western Australia, 28 June SOLD OUT

Auckland, New Zealand, 9 October SOLD OUT

Melbourne, Victoria, 11 October . SOLD OUT

Newcastle, New South Wales, 23 November


Introduction to the Non-Diet Approach FREE

Unpacking Weight Science $79AUD

The Non-Diet Approach for Dietitians $199AUD

The Science of Self Compassion $39AUD


Want these 'live'? Then follow me on Twitter (@FionaWiller), Facebook (@HealthNotDiets) and Instagram (@FionaWiller)

Want more info about the non-diet approach or unpacking weight science? Resources include books, courses, workshops and handouts: visit

See anything you think I'd like to share or comment about? Post in the comments below or email me at

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