Health At Every Size®

Health At Every Size® (HAES®)

Diet culture refers to the beliefs, customs, messages, and behaviours that place value on weight, shape, and body size instead of health and well-being. Health At Every Size (HAES®) offers an alternative evidence-based framework to dieting that recognises health and well-being are so much more than food, exercise, and weight. HAES® supports exploring health goals of your choice across many facets of your life- physical, emotional, psychological, and/or spiritual health. It shifts the prime focus from dieting and weight loss to exploring health-enhancing behaviours for people of all body shapes and sizes, where weight loss may or may not be a side effect. Watch this animated video exposing the limitations and false assumptions linking body weight and health.

Weight stigma refers to discrimination projected onto people living in larger bodies arising from cultural beliefs and attitudes based on their weight, shape and size.  Sadly, weight stigma can be experienced in workplaces, social interactions with friends and family, and even with medical and other health professionals. HAES® is underpinned by the belief that all bodies deserve to live a life free from weight stigma, shame and discrimination and have equal access to medical care that excludes weight loss recommendations.

Our Dietitians work through a HAES® lens and support its 5 principles.

The Health At Every Size® (HAES®) principles we support include:

Weight Inclusivity

We accept and respect the inherent diversity of body shapes and sizes and reject the idealizing or pathologizing of specific weights.

Health Enhancement

We support health policies that improve and equalize access to information and services, and personal practices that improve human well-being, including attention to individual physical, economic, social, spiritual, emotional, and other needs.

Eating for Well-being

We promote flexible, individualized eating based on hunger, satiety, nutritional needs, and pleasure, rather than any externally regulated eating plan focused on weight control.

Respectful Care

We acknowledge our biases, and work to end weight discrimination, weight stigma, and weight bias. We provide information and services from an understanding that socio-economic status, race, gender, sexual orientation, age, and other identities impact weight stigma, and support environments that address these inequities.

Life-Enhancing Movement

We support physical activities that allow people of all sizes, abilities, and interests to engage in enjoyable movement, to the degree that they choose.

Learn more about the evidence supporting a shift in ethical healthcare from weight loss to HAES.