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What is the Health At Every Size(SM) approach and why it is important

The Health At Every SizeSM approach is about the ways that people of all sizes can maximize their health.  This approach does not mean to give up or to let everything go.  It is an active process by which people work positively with their bodies and within their lifestyles to achieve a level of health which is reasonable and above all, sustainable for them.  It means managing health within a framework of a life well lived as opposed to weight centric, thin at any cost methods.  It means managing nutrition and fitness within a global health framework that would include managing stress, sleeping well, maintaining social connectedness and much, much more. This is not passive, and it is not easy.  It requires a lifetime of careful work in learning which foods nourish you and which leave you feeling unwell; in learning what forms of exercise strengthen you and energize you and which forms leave you depleted and hurting; and in learning to make positive, gradual changes based on self-care rather than self-hatred.

The  HAES Files will serve as a means to push for a shift in paradigm from weight centered to health centered.  The Association for Size Diversity and Health has asked four of its prominent members to contribute once a month to create a weekly blog .  Deb Burgard, Linda Bacon, Jon Robison and Michelle May work in diverse fields and have been key to bringing the Health At Every SizeSM  message to the academic, eating disorder, medical and corporate communities.    We have asked each of our bloggers to challenge us on how we address weight and diet and nutrition and physical activity and stigma and discrimination and ALL that our culture has deemed to wrap in a so-called “obesity crisis.”   We are no longer content with sitting in the back of the room, listening politely as policy makers, the media, and the food, diet and health industry dictate how this is going to play out.  We are done asking for a seat at the table, we are taking one.

Deb Lemire, President

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