The Redesigning Wellness Podcast

186: Diet Culture and Weight Stigma in the Workplace, with Christy Harrison, Author of Anti-Diet

Christy Harrison - Headshot

With so much of the wellness world focused on weight loss as the key to health, how is it possible that the science suggests otherwise? Christy Harrison, registered dietitian and author of Anti-Diet: Reclaim Your Time, Money, Well-Being and Happiness Through Intuitive Eating, believes the obsession with diet culture overshadows the actual research proving that weight loss is unsustainable and actively harmful to individual wellbeing.

Christy seeks to turn what you think you know about health and wellness upside down while taking on diet culture and the multi-billion-dollar industries that profit from it. Her podcast Food Psych is now one of iTunes top 100 health podcasts.

In today’s episode, Christy shares what drove her to write her book, including some of her own struggles making peace with food. She explains the science behind the health at every size (HAES) model, and how current research and funding are being swayed by diet culture. 

Christy discusses the health implications of weight stigma, as well as non-stigmatizing language to use. She disputes the common belief that obesity is unacceptable and instead offers that weight is similar to an inborn characteristic like race or height. Finally, she leaves us with a practical application to start shifting the paradigm.

Interview Highlights (with timestamps):
  • [6:49] What drove Christy to write her new book, and what she hopes to accomplish with it
  • [16:06] The science behind health at every size
  • [19:11] The dangers of weight stigma
  • [23:17] Research and funding overshadowed by diet culture 
  • [29:06] Why people don’t want to believe the science against weight management
  • [31:12] Non-stigmatizing language surrounding weight
  • [33:53] The “wellness diet”
  • [37:08] Making peace with food and stripping away value judgments
  • [42:14] Disputing the idea that obesity is unacceptable
  • [49:32] Health At Every Size (HAES) approach
  • [52:08] Christy’s actionable tip
Mentioned in this episode:
Full Bio:

Christy Harrison, MPH, RD, CDN is an anti-diet registered dietitian nutritionist, certified intuitive eating counselor, and author of the book Anti-Diet: Reclaim Your Time, Money, Well-Being, and Happiness Through Intuitive Eating (Little, Brown Spark 2019). She offers online courses and private intuitive eating coaching to help people all over the world make peace with food and their bodies. Since 2013 Christy has hosted Food Psych, a weekly podcast exploring people’s relationships with food and paths to body liberation. It is now one of iTunes’ top 100 health podcasts, reaching tens of thousands of listeners worldwide each week. 

Christy began her career in 2003 as a journalist covering food, nutrition, and health, and she’s written for major publications including The New York Times, SELF, BuzzFeed, Refinery29, Gourmet, Slate, The Food Network, and many others.

Learn more about Christy and her work at: