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Blog Body Shaming in the Vegan Community


Ginny Messina said:
I had the pleasure of speaking on a panel with Andy Tabar of Compassion Company and JL Fields of JL Goes Vegan at Vegfest Colorado in late July. We spoke about body shaming and food shaming in the vegan community. Although this is admittedly an unusual topic for a vegfest, it’s an important one. Not [...]
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Ginny Messina said:
Andy posted a live recording of our presentations on his Bearded Vegans podcast, and you can view the slides from my presentation here. I looked at some of the potential consequences of over-hyping the health benefits of a vegan diet and at how some tactics used in animal advocacy contribute to body shaming. Andy and JL shared personal observations about body shaming and food shaming among vegans and explored ways in which our community can do better.
This is what we can do (and not do) to counter body (and food) shaming:

  • Don’t promise people that they will lose weight on a vegan diet.
  • Don’t assume that everyone is trying to lose weight.
  • Accept that someone else’s body is not your business.
  • Don’t use terms like “junk food vegan.”
  • Resist the temptation to comment on someone else’s food post about how you “would never eat that.”
  • Recognize that there are many variations of vegan diets that are healthful.
  • Recognize that we do not have all the answers about diet and health.
  • Recognize that vegans can get sick.
  • Don’t make assumptions about why someone got sick.
  • Instead of celebrating certain vegan bodies, celebrate all vegan efforts to do justice.


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I would possibly add to this

"Accept it that people on a vegan diet might decide not to choose the most healthful diet for themselves, just like people on a non-vegan diet do every day (but there nobody bats an eye)"