Try these 6 podcasts for an antidote to food culture

Start Episode: “The Body Mass Index”

As the title suggests, this show aims to counter many of the harsh, self-critical messages people take on about their bodies. Rebecca Scritchfield is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist who has focused her counseling practice on rejecting body shame and traditional diet goals. She brings that same gentle, humane approach to her monthly podcast, which is billed explicitly as a show about health, not weight loss. Scritchfield’s advice is deceptively simple: She encourages people to stop seeing food through the lens of reward versus punishment, and instead try to eat intuitively. With a five-year-deep back catalog, there’s an episode devoted to just about any topic you could want, including the fat acceptance movement, diabetes, and the ways chronic dieting can affect mental health.

Start Episode: “Bernie and Rebecca Discuss Emotional Eating”

One of the best ways to combat the toxic food culture is to reconnect with your love of food itself – the flavors, the texture, the cooking process. Cookbook author Julia Turshen (her latest is “Simply Julia”) is here to help with this comforting interview show. Guests included writers, chefs and celebrities such as Antoni Porowski of ‘Queer Eye’. “Keep Calm and Cook On” is a great reminder of how food interacts with just about every other aspect of life, including mental health, relationships, and race. So while Turshen may ostensibly talk about cooking with her guests, the conversations are always intimate, vulnerable and broad.

Start Episode: “On Baking: Roxane Gay”

Four years ago, actress Jameela Jamil (“The Good Place”) started a social media movement called “I Weigh”. The title is ironic – Jamil’s reaction to both the Kardashians, who promoted diet products at the time, and a wider cultural obsession with female weight. With “I Weigh” and the spin-off podcast, Jamil encourages women to ignore the number on the scale and instead focus on a more abstract version of their “weight” – a concept that takes into account their strengths. points, their achievements and all the things that make up who they are. In the podcast, Jamil interviews women in various fields about everything from menstruation to the best way to spot a liar. Jamil is now an advocate for what she calls “body neutrality,” and while the podcast isn’t explicitly about body image, the theme comes up in many of her interviews.

Starting Episode: “Beanie Feldstein”

Over the past decade, countless documentaries have pledged to uncover “the truth” about the health effects of various foods. But many of these movies seem biased, oversimplified, or based on shaky science, encouraging viewers to make radical changes to their diet — such as giving up sugar, going keto, or leaving animal products — in order to achieve real health. Hosted by Pixie Turner, a nutritionist, and Nikki Stamp, a cardiothoracic surgeon, “In Bad Taste” cuts through the noise to determine which movies are worth watching. Each month, Turner and Stamp focus on a different documentary, giving them plenty of time to thoroughly analyze the claims being made. Even when tearing a documentary to shreds, their enlightening conversations somehow manage to keep warm, and it’s always clear that they’re motivated by a genuine passion for countering harmful nonsense.

Start Episode: “The Magic Pill: Nothing Magical About Keto”

Bon Appétit’s latest podcast is a light, entertaining weekly dose of food conversation that largely keeps the diet talk away. Instead, each episode focuses on a different culinary question. Some are prosaic (is an air fryer really worth the counter?) and others are more abstract (should you change the way you eat for someone you love?). The podcast covers the question of the week with help from Bon Appétit employees, chefs, and a single celebrity guest.

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