Food Psych #152: How to Make Peace with Photos of Yourself with Lindley Ashline


Body-positive photographer Lindley Ashline joins to talk about the power of representation, the process of breaking fashion rules for people in larger bodies, how the diet industry uses aspirational marketing to lure us in and keep us hooked, Lindley’s journey to her career in photography for diverse bodies, and so much more! Plus, Christy answers a listener question about whether it’s appropriate to talk to diet-recovery clients about choosing “whole” foods. 

Lindley Ashline is a professional photographer in Seattle, WA, who specializes in body positive portraits of people of all sizes, genders, orientations, ability levels, and ethnicities, not just the ones whose bodies are likely to be seen in magazines and advertisements. Lindley takes a judgment-free approach to her photographic subjects, with little to no retouching.

She created RepresentationMatters.me in 2016 as a response to (and rejection of) the airbrushed, normative, too-perfect stock photography available on the big mainstream stock sites. The images available on the site focus on representing people who are fat, of color, and/or part of the LGBTQIAP+ community.

Representation Matters gives small business owners a way to represent the real bodies and lives of their customers in their marketing and on websites and social media. It contains Lindley's own photography as well as photos and illustrations from a growing number of contributors, making diverse and body positive artwork accessible and affordable while paying contributors a living wage. 

Find thousands of high-quality diverse stock images and free monthly photos over at Lindley's site, RepresentationMatters.me.


We Discuss:

  • Lindley’s relationship with food, including how her family’s class status and her sensitivity to certain flavors and textures impacted it

  • Her journey to finding intuitive eating and learning how to create boundaries

  • How she avoided so much of the diet culture messaging while growing up

  • Lindley’s experience of body shame

  • Her struggle during puberty to find plus-size clothes

  • Dieting as a class marker and indicator of wealth, and how Lindley aspired to dieting due to the class status she felt that it indicated

  • The diet industry’s use of aspirational marketing

  • Lindley’s experience with weight stigma and fatphobia at the doctor’s office

  • The trajectory of “failing” a diet or “falling off the wagon”

  • How being in a relationship with an intuitive eater can help us on our own recovery journey

  • How the Fatshionista community on LiveJournal helped Lindley embrace fat acceptance and fashion

  • The process of breaking fashion rules for people in larger bodies

  • Lindley’s process of coming to body acceptance, and how self-photography played a role

  • How the heritage of body positivity affected Lindley’s relationship with her body

  • Lindley’s journey to her career in photography for diverse bodies

  • The complex issue of choice feminism

  • Lindley’s boudoir photoshoots, and how she balances accessing mainstream beauty standards with rejecting fatphobia and extreme photoshopping

  • The ways in which photos lie about our true, holistic appearance, and how to move away from focusing on the flaws that we see in photographs of ourselves

  • The ongoing process and internal dialogue of body peace

  • Lindley’s work with LGBTQ+ folks, and her efforts to make her work a safe place for people of all identities

  • The birth of Representation Matters stock photos, and how Lindley has used the platform to reject mainstream stock tropes

  • The power of representation


Resources Mentioned

Some of the links below are affiliate links. Affiliates or not, we only recommend products and services that align with our values.


Listener Question of the Week

How is “The Wellness Diet” a new form of diet culture? What’s the deal with “whole foods?” What are the issues with the current food industry? Are there class implications for demonizing “processed foods?” Why is gentle nutrition at the very end of the intuitive eating process?

(Resources Mentioned: Intuitive Eating, 3rd ed. by Evelyn Tribole and Elyse Resch, Food Psych Podcast Episode #127, Intuitive Eating Fundamentals)

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Food Psych #135: Body Respect, Weight-Inclusive Care, and Health at Every Size with Lucy Aphramor

Lucy Aphramor

Lucy Aphramor, anti-diet dietitian and co-author (with Linda Bacon) of Body Respect, joins us to talk about Health at Every Size, why we need to be weight-inclusive instead of just weight-neutral, the social determinants of health, the importance of having a trauma-informed focus as a healthcare provider, her struggles with body image in the context of gender identity and sexuality, the importance of prioritizing emotional safety, and so much more! PLUS, Christy answers a listener question about how to handle arguments that stopping emotional eating automatically leads to weight loss.

Lucy Aphramor is an award-winning radical dietitian and critically acclaimed performance poet aka The Naked Dietitian. She practises the weight-equitable approach Well Now that advocates health-gain and body respect for all. Her co-authored book Body Respect, written with Linda Bacon, explores many of the key concepts of Well Now. She subsequently developed Well Now theory to be compassion-centered, trauma-informed and justice-enhancing. Lucy is interested in starting conversations that build a fairer world--and the role of story in this--and co-founded Dietitians for Social Justice with Fiona Clarke. Find her online at LucyAphramor.com.

Grab Christy's free guide, 7 simple strategies for finding peace and freedom with food, to start your intuitive eating journey. You can also text "7STRATEGIES" to the phone number 44222 to get it on the go :)

12/20 is the LAST day to get Christy's newest online course for fellow health & wellness pros, Master Your Anti-Diet Message! Grab it now at christyharrison.com/message.

Share your stories with Storyworth! Get $20 off a subscription with our special URL, storyworth.com/psych.

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We Discuss:

  • Lucy’s relationship with food growing up, including her transition into an orthorexic and anorexic style of eating and movement, and her struggle with IBS

  • Lucy’s experience as a nationally ranked runner, and the current problem with fitspo

  • How coping mechanisms can serve a larger purpose, even if they’re destructive in the end

  • The effect of trauma on our eating behaviors

  • Lucy’s experience finding a feminist therapist, and how they helped her heal

  • The experience of healing from an eating disorder versus healing our body image

  • Gender identity and sexuality, the idea of identity resilience, and understanding our core sense of self worth in our body image journey

  • The value in naming our experience

  • Lucy’s discovery of her queer identity, and how poetry helped her to discover it

  • Lucy’s model of “eating distress discovery,” and the different philosophies surrounding recovery

  • How social oppression affects our mental health struggles

  • Lucy’s experience training as a dietitian, and the ways in which dietetics education reinforce disordered eating

  • Lucy’s experience working in the mental health system, and the ways in which it opened her eyes to social justice

  • Social determinants of health, and Lucy’s process of finding a weight-neutral paradigm that considered trauma’s impact on wellness

  • Finding Health at Every Size, and Lucy’s approach of “Well Now”

  • Weight inclusive vs weight neutral, and the healthism embedded within neutrality

  • Lucy’s and Christy’s experiences finding communities to hold their ideas and exploration

  • Guiding clients away from weight loss and to intuitive eating, and exploring the role of restriction and dieting in someone’s life

  • Helping people to identify and meet their needs and desires

  • The importance of prioritizing psychic and emotional safety

  • Centering health behaviors vs social determinants of health in discussions about Health at Every Size, and grappling with the definition of HAES


Resources Mentioned

Some of the links below are affiliate links. Affiliates or not, we only recommend products and services that align with our values.


Listener Question of the Week

Does stopping emotional eating lead to weight loss? Is intuitive eating a path to weight loss?

(Resources Mentioned: Food Psych Podcast Episode #127)

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