Finding an anti-diet doctor near me when I first rebelled against diet culture was virtually impossible. Finding any anti-diet, HAES-aligned, weight-neutral professionals hasn’t been easy for my patients either.
So, when I read the statistics about 40-60% of patients reporting medical weight stigma (Puhl et al 2022), it didn’t surprise me, but it still broke my heart. My patients have been telling me about their stigmatizing and dismissive experiences with medical and wellness professionals for years. After all, it’s part of the reason that I became an anti-diet doctor in the first place.
Too Many Patients Are Avoiding Medical Attention Due To Fear of Weight Stigma
Medical weight stigma is leading patients to avoid seeing a doctor at all. Patients have experienced outright refusal of testing until weight loss is achieved, misdiagnosis (all things are blamed on weight), and flippant recommendations for weight-loss surgery when they went in for a sore throat (sadly, an actual patient story).
Additionally, about 10% of Ontarians don’t have a family doctor. As a result, many chronic health issues aren’t managed. Diabetes and hypertension are left unchecked. Routine screening for cardiovascular disease (like cholesterol checks) and cancer (vaginal exams and pap tests) are left undone.
As a Naturopathic Doctor (ND) in Ontario, I’m uniquely positioned to offer weight-neutral care, free from weight stigma and shame. NDs in Ontario can offer the following:
- bloodwork to monitor blood sugars, cholesterol, hormones, and more (judgment-free)
- Test thyroid function and other hormones (without the recommendation of weight loss first)
- physical exams (without being weighed)
- prescription for certain medications, including thyroid and bio-identical hormones
- provide vaginal exams including Pap tests
Want an anti-diet Pop-up Clinic in your city?
If you’d like to vote for a city near you, fill out the Pop-Up Clinic Survey here.
- Vaginal exams and Pap tests will be offered in future clinics with enough interest
- Table has weight limit of 1500 lbs
- BP cuff fits up to 17″ or 42 cm