When I battle fatphobia online, I often see a lot of people use so-called “scientific facts” as a battering ram against fat people. Those ‘facts’ are often built on hearsay and conventional wisdom and not any of the real scientific research about fat people.
I decided it was high time, that I actually went to a professional to sit down with us and tells the real truth about fat people. Immediately thought about Kristina Bruce, who is a certified life coach who has a degree in Health Studies and Sociology.
If you are on Instagram, and in the fat-positive movement you probably have seen her posts reposted everywhere. This is how I encountered her, and I realized Kristina Bruce is one of the most sought-after health professionals in the fat positive moment and is actually a Body Movement Ambassador. I was very lucky that she agreed to sit down and do an interview with me.
Now, sit down, pull up a chair and let’s get this interview started shall we?
You are a body acceptance coach? Can you tell me a little bit about what this is?
As a Body Acceptance Coach, I help people move past the fixation of wanting to change their bodies so they can so they can live fuller, more joyful lives now, not 10, 20 or 30 pounds from now. Diet culture tells us that there is a certain way our bodies are supposed to look and that there is a certain way we’re supposed to eat and exercise etc. These ideas have robbed us of our ability to trust ourselves to take care of our body, and it often sucks the joy right out of living. Through my coaching, I help people re-learn to trust their bodies and get in touch with what makes them feel good, instead of what they think they “should” do. We also that a look at the ideas and beliefs that we have grown up believing are “fact” – beliefs like “fat is bad” etc., and see how it’s impacting their lives. Ultimately, the goal is to get back in touch with what makes people feel the most healthy and happy – not what they have been told will.
Where you always body positive and fat accepting?
No, not at all. I grew up in a family where the women were always concerned about their weight. My Mom was always on a diet, so was my Aunt and Grandma. I learned through my family and diet culture-at-large that if I was thinner, I would be better (namely more beautiful and attractive which of course I was socialized was important, especially as a woman). My body was an average size, but it wasn’t thin, so I spent my 20s and early 30s heavily focused on being and staying thin. I also believed the popular rhetoric about weight and health (that fat was bad) but also, that weight gain was the “fault” of the person who was bigger. Sadly – I was sucked right into diet culture.