MEET SERENA NANGIA
Serena Nangia is a long-time advocate for eating disorder recovery, the host of The Body Activism Podcast, and the founder of The Body Activists. Serena has spent close to a decade building expertise on the way body image, media, and eating disorders affect people’s daily lives. She is a frequent public speaker on the issue of fatphobia and actively works to elevate diverse voices of People of Color and Fat people. Serena’s inspiration comes from her sister, Ellen, who struggled with an eating disorder for over a decade and is now in long-term recovery.Visit Serena's website and The Body Activists. Connect with her on Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn.
IN THIS PODCAST
- Fatphobia and eating disorders
- Look for your community
- Share your work
- The business of body image
Fatphobia and eating disorders
Fatphobia as a systemic issue is related to why a lot of people have eating disorders [because] of the focus on the “ideal” body. (Serena Nangia)Eating disorders are not only about someone’s physical appearance and can be caused by a range of different factors. However, many people develop eating disorders as a consequence of buying into the societal belief that there is an “ideal” body type and that health only looks a certain way. If society has trained people to think that all fat is unhealthy or bad, then they sometimes develop and internalize fatphobia, leading to fat people being treated poorly.
What, psychologically, have we been taught to believe about what is true about fat people and what is true about not-fat people? Even if it’s not about the body … it might be because they see, underneath all the surface, how fat people are treated [in society]. (Serena Nangia)
Look for your communityUtilize digital platforms to connect with like-minded and supportive people, wherever they may be in the world. Become familiar with different types of content and a diverse group of people.
In my virtual space [I surrounded myself with] people who were at different levels of comfortability with their bodies and weren’t bashing their bodies or making themselves feel bad. (Serena Nangia)Start by following people who have a similar body to you, and find others who exist in differently sized bodies.
Share your workWrite, draw, perform, or sing about your experience, and share it with your community. Spend time with people who welcome you and protect your safe space alongside you. Share your experience and your interaction with life with other people who can empathize with you.
The business of body imageThe body image and diet culture industry are massive. They spend hundreds of millions of dollars each year in promoting certain ideals to lure clients into buying products or weight-loss services that are designed to fail.
I hope to see a world where companies that have so much power don’t harm people unintentionally or intentionally [for profit]. (Serena Nangia)Be mindful of where you are spending your money. Which companies are you supporting and which dialogues are you a part of?
- Visit Serena's website and The Body Activists. Connect with her on Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn.
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