Why Body Positivity Health Care is essential to holistic wellness

What is Body Positivity?

To be body positive refers to the acceptance and non-stigmatization of all bodies regardless of size, shape, skin tone, gender, or physical ability [1].

Céline Leboeuf, Author of What Is Body Positivity? The Path from Shame to Pride, states the body-positive movement is “often implicitly understood as the effort to celebrate diversity in bodily aesthetics and to expand our narrow beauty standards beyond their present-day confines [1].

For health care, this means placing less emphasis on appearance-oriented (body image) goals and more focus on body function and health. Your health is not just about the number on the scale.

What is Body Positivity Care?

Caring for our bodies means not deriving self-worth and value from physical appearances.

As primary care providers, our goal isn’t to make you “look better,” but to help you feel better and support your quality of life.

You might’ve heard the saying “when you look good you feel good” before, and this might be true for a great blazer, but we believe “feeling good” comes from tuned-in, holistic care, or feeling well from within.

Body-positive care providers help patients feel less shame when speaking about their bodies. A person’s body image isn’t only about perceived image. There are various reasons someone’s appearance can change, from disease to mobility to mental health.

To find the root of any health issue, patients need to feel comfortable talking through causes, factors, and potential solutions with their doctor without fear of judgment.

Just as it’s essential for psychiatrists and psychologists not to perpetuate shame or stigma onto mental health patients, the same rule applies to weight stigma and primary care physicians.

How can Body Positivity influence Holistic Care?

Body positivity facilitates honest and productive conversations between doctors and patients about physical and mental health. It’s easy to understand why many Naturopathic Physicians (ND) choose to embrace a body-positive or body-neutral approach.

The Whole-Person or Holistic approach recognizes and supports the connection between physical and mental health and offers informed, preventative treatment. Because Holistic Care Providers will ask a wider variety of questions, it’s vital that patients feel safe to discuss anything connected to body image.

When patients feel at ease with their primary provider, they’re more likely to speak up about pain, be honest about habits, talk about the past, and be transparent about sensitive topics. Creating a safe environment for patients should be a top priority for any doctor, but especially for Holistic NDs who treat all aspects of your health.

How LCC Practices Body-Positive Care

Link Community Clinic is a Naturopathic practice passionate about providing human-centered treatment in Tacoma, WA.

Naturopathy is holistic at its core and focused on patient empowerment [2]. This falls right in line with our mission to create positive change in our community by delivering truly caring primary care.

We recognize the combination of factors that define and impact health, such as what you eat, relationships, sleep, work, injury, illness, etc. We work with you to accurately assess these aspects of your life to provide the best treatment.

Getting to know you is a huge part of what we do, and we enjoy learning about our patients! Our team prioritizes non-drug methods such as lifestyle shifts, stress management, diet adjustments, and natural substances, but also includes medication, minor surgery, and referrals for specialty care when needed.

Thinking about finding a body-positive care provider?

Ask yourself these questions:

  • Have you felt uncomfortable in traditional or past healthcare settings?
  • Are you tired of seeing multiple doctors/specialists and juggling appointments?
  • Are you feeling unresolved about current health issues?
  • Do you feel understood by your current providers?

It might be time to explore Integrated Naturopathic care!

View Link Clinic’s services to learn more about how we can help.

To get started, contact one of our friendly team members today.

Hear firsthand from our providers

“You’re a human in our community and we care about you” – Gena Poling, ND, MPH, MSEd

“You don’t have to put up with a 10-15 minute medical visit where you’re only allowed to talk about one problem.” – Luciano Garofalo, ND, MS


[1] Leboeuf, Céline. “What Is Body Positivity? The Path from Shame to Pride.” Philosophical Topics, vol. 47, no. 2, 2019, pp. 113–28. JSTOR, https://www.jstor.org/stable/26948109. Accessed 24 July 2023.

[1] https://www.jstor.org/stable/26948109?read-now=1&seq=1#page_scan_tab_contents

[2] Tippens, Kimberly Michelle, et al. “A Dialogue between Naturopathy and Critical Medical Anthropology: Toward a Broadened Conception of Holistic Health.” Medical Anthropology Quarterly, vol. 26, no. 2, 2012, pp. 257–70. JSTOR, http://www.jstor.org/stable/41682569. Accessed 24 July 2023.