170 Body Positivity 101 with Jaime K from Save the Kales!

We are so stoked to finally do an episode on body positivity! This week, we’re joined by the lovely Jaime Karpovich to talk the basics of body positivity: what it is, what it isn’t (or shouldn’t be), how it’s been commercialized in the mainstream, and what the vegan movement should learn from it.  

In This Episode

We talk to Jaime Karpovich of Save the Kales! this week about body positivity as it is today. Jaime breaks down for us what the movement looked like 20 years ago vs today, ways that it has been commercialized and misunderstood, and the difference between body positivity vs body neutrality vs body autonomy, all while giving helpful tips along the way! Content Warning: Mention of clothing size; mention of suicidal thoughts. At one point, Jaime mentions her clothing size. We kept it in because it’s relevant to her experience and to what she was saying at the time. There are no other mentions of weight or size throughout. Nichole briefly discusses how those who live with chronic pain also often live with suicidal thoughts. Joke in the Middle
Why was the carrot embarrassed?

Find Jaime K at:

Website | YouTube | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter

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    • Thank you so much for having this discussion. I’ve noticed how all plus-sized models still exhibit conventional feminine beauty standards and been perplexed by this. When the “eff your beauty standards” thing started happening I was so confused because the girls wearing the gear just looked like pictures of victoria’s secret models that’d been stretched horizontally to various degrees. I want to see actual diversity. And thank you for bringing up Lauren Ornelas’s view that vegan advocacy helps communities of color even if there is a health focus. I’d love to hear her thoughts on this. Maybe you can have her on the show! My musings on the subject follow. For any community who is experiencing negative health consequences because of the food they are eating (or air they breath or hog farm they are forced to live next to) we can address and try to fix the health problem without bringing up individuals bodies. It might be that communities who have limited access to fruits and veggies have a higher rate illness and fatness. But the fact that they are fat is not what is causing the illness. Stress, poverty, high-density of liquor stores, pollution, working multiple jobs etc are just as important, I don’t know why individual food choices are weighed so heavily. It’s the discriminatory systems that are the problem. Saying that the problem is that these people are fat is avoiding the actual problem. We’re all doing the best we can with the shit we’ve got. Our measure for success in helping these communities should be how much better we make their lives not how much weight they loose. I’ve seen some great YouTube videos about people using veganism to re embrace their traditional diet, since most indigenous cultures were heavily plant based. There are so many benefits to advocating for a vegan diet within marginalized communities and we don’t need to talk about size at all in order to do it. As a thin person I’ve often wondered how to be an ally in this movement. One approach I can think of is taking on some of the emotional labor of talking to people about fatphobia. Do you see any problems with this approach? If you do another podcast on this subject I would be interested in going more in depth. Thanks again!
        • Hey Teale! I would love to have Lauren on to talk about these issues. We’re seeing her in a few weeks, maybe I’ll see if she has the time/energy to sit down with us and record some thoughts on this topic. It was very eye-opening for me to think about “health veganism” in this way and try to work into my ideas around vegan advocacy. I would love to explore that with her further. I also love your question about being a thin person who is an ally. I would love to cover this on the show at some point but in the meantime, I’d say yes, please have these conversations with people so fat-identifying folks and large-bodied folks don’t have to. We had an incident of fat-shaming at a party over last weekend, and my very thin friend did the emotional labor of talking to her boyfriend privately afterwards to explain why it was not ok. She did the work of patiently walking him through why it’s not cool so we didn’t have to, and I’m so grateful for that. Anything you can do to make people understand fat-shaming is not acceptable is greatly appreciated. I’ll put this on our topic list as something to cover in a future body liberation episode 🙂 <3 Nichole

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