Black Women Talk About Self-Care | Black Women OWN the Conversation | Oprah Winfrey Network

Who believes we
make excuses for not taking care of ourselves? Yes?
All day long. Let me hear from you. My name is Lisa Banks. And I am the only
girl in my family. I’m the oldest. So I was born with stress. I lost both of my
parents back to back. So you go home to
your father’s funeral. You deal with preparing
for them, repast. Then you go back to work. They only give you three days. You go back to work, pay bills,
take care of your daughter, your household. But you didn’t mourn– not
one parent, but both parents. And then on top of that, you
still got to get up every day, and go to work,
and pay the bills, and produce, and be
that person people think you supposed to be. You’re dying inside. You’re stressed inside. You’re not taking
care of yourself. There is no exercise. There’s no meditation. Now, today I’m getting better. The weight is definitely stress. I don’t take care of
myself as I used to. But I’m praying about it,
moving forward, and making small changes in my life. But when that video came on,
I resonate so much with that. Because that’s what
I was dealing with. [APPLAUSE] So I actually
want us to hold up a little bit before
we do this thing where we start blaming ourselves. I hate when people talk about
black women being obese. I hate it. Because it becomes
a way to blame us for a set of conditions
that we didn’t create. We’re moving. We’re taking care of kids. But our food quality suffers. We are living in the Trump era. And look, those policies
kill our people. You can’t get access to good
health care, good insurance. The research says
that black women, when we do the same diets as white
women, we lose less weight and we lose it slower,
even when we’re following the diet, than our
white women counterparts. And what public health
practitioners think is that our stress responses in
the body change our metabolism. It’s literally that the racism
that you’re experiencing and the struggle to
make ends meet actually means the diet don’t
work for you the same. [APPLAUSE] And I’m with you. I’m with you. But I think it’s also
really important for us to know that we have the power
to choose how we see ourselves. Sure. We will be
fortified to fight all of these other external issues
when we pour into ourselves enough to say, I love me. I am not the conditions
that surround me. I am not my experience. I am more than the circumstances
that I have gone through.

69 Replies to “Black Women Talk About Self-Care | Black Women OWN the Conversation | Oprah Winfrey Network”

  1. So the big girl in pink wants to blame Trump for her being fat as a pig? She knows good and well that she's been fat all her life.

  2. Itโ€™s not just things like racism and the the circumstances outside of the community. The stress first begins within the community. A lot of our mothers do not experience happy pregnancies for different reasons (trash males, financial situations whatever), we do not have the best or the healthiest family ties and plenty of other issues that first begin WITHIN the community before we even reach the outside society. Let alone when we finally yes self care is not only wanted but in my opinion NEEDED for a black woman.

  3. This where if youโ€™re Blessed to have Paid Time Off take it. My mother passed and I was off for 2 1/2 weeks and was paid for it all. When my father passed I was able to take a week off. Before he passed I took off a week to take my daughter to meet her Grandfather for the first time. I was very thankful I had the vacation time to do that.

  4. One of the major differences between black and white women are melanin levels. Black women have more melanin which means we need longer exposure to the sun in order to have proper amounts of vitamin D3. Black people have ancestors that lived close to the equator. We are not in the best environment for optimal health. A daily vitamin D3 supplement is crucial under these circumstances.

  5. Racism definitely affects diet. From the "soul" food to the fast food, which is essentially all scraps. These eating habits are passed down from generation, so even when a black woman becomes financially equipped to do better she will have to break the old cycles or get rid of the physical effects that the old cycles have caused. This is all residual effects of slavery. They put fast-food chains on every corner in black neighborhoods or even worse one right after the other. Black women in particular who do work a corporate job are either overworked and underpaid or being mistreated at the job, which further leads to unhealthy eating habits to find peace. But the most important thing to understand is that Black descendant of slaves are eating from everyone else's diet but our own, which causes high blood pressure, obesity, cancer, etc. And that's because as a collective we don't know who we are. I have noticed that once a black woman reaches a certain age (mid to late 20's and older) and if she is still in shape and toned, she is looked at as an anomaly. People view being healthy and good looking for a black woman after a certain age as having some form of privilege because the wear and tear of the system shows on black people, particularly black women, whether it be in our face, body etc and when it doesn't people become curious and don't know why or where their curiosity lye's. The sad part is that black women can become jealous of other black women who don't show physical signs of the residual effects of slavery and trauma, which further leads to disconnects in our community.

  6. I am not an AA woman & I allowed stress to cause problems in my health! We as FEMALES are guilty of this as a GENDER not as JUST a RACIAL ISSUE! People thought I was overweight just bcoz I could not LOSE weight? It is VERY difficult to find competent medical help from MY white woman perspective when they were questioning whether I was taking my medication PROPERLY!?!? I have more to say about women who follow men to prison & care more about men & get pregnant over & over by those that could care less coz U gettin food stamps & housing, etc… Baby๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿคฃ๐Ÿ˜ขBaby U know I have trouble gettinโ€™ a job/keepinโ€™ a job… We let em talk smack & take the heat for their sorry behind when all along if I had thought more of myself I couldโ€™ve finished college & had a GOOD$$$JOB๐Ÿ˜ฒ

  7. Yeah … nice affirmation. But it will take another 400 years to change your life with that. It takes better food quality like she said, less working like a mule on a job everyday ,knowing thyself and serious commitment to exercise, we lazy , I know I am or have been – no more excuses big ladies you got to exercise and stop praying it away.

  8. That's right sister, Tina Lifford, we have the power to choose how we see ourselves!๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿผ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿผ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿผlove the way you thinkโคโค

  9. Very interesting discussion. Being a wife and mother can wreak havoc on our minds and bodies. We have to learn to take care of ourselves first.

  10. That easier for her to say she donโ€™t know what they do to you! Why you think I lashed out on social media I know I am not tripping

  11. Treat yourself to day spa massage groupon..form a waiting to exhale group..put everyone wish or topic in a secret basket.pool moneu or resources for investment or trips tru civil rights museum Memphis Tennessee..beale st river boat whitney plantation..nola

  12. Tell me I!'m lying when I say IT'S HARD BEING A BLACK WOMAN IN RACIST AMERICA?!! ๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ˜ญ

  13. This is sooo true!! We must love ourselves fully,mind body and spirit inspite of our situation or circumstances. We can Not pour ANYTHING from an empty vessel, good bad or indifferent. We MUST make sure we are complete WHOLE individuals in order to physically mentally emotionally and spiritually thrive

  14. White women are just as stressed out and diets does'nt work for anyone๐Ÿ˜• So unecessary but convenient to make it into a race thing and blame someone else again.

  15. This is why it's such a betrayal for black men to ignore the unique struggle of black women, point an accusing finger and saying, why can't you be more like Becky?

  16. No, you are just obese, stop it! Take accountability for your health and stop making excuses. Black people will not stop suffering for a while but we still need to better ourselves and that includes keeping ourselves healthy!

  17. Oh lord, these excuses…our grandparents were facing way worse social conditions than we are and the majority of them still didn't end up living with morbidly obesity. Take accountability and admit you've grown comfortable being unhealthy.

  18. "We have the power…"no truer words have been spoken. Stop blaming others for your choices. It all starts with you!!๐Ÿคจ

  19. Stress releases Cortisol and other hormones that if out of wack because of environmental stressors can led to a slew of health problems for some women and men. This system is designed for your failure. For those of you who are maintaining despite of the systematic factors that are placed as barriers to "selfcare" continue to be blessed and if and when possible assist those who are having a difficult time.

  20. As a black woman we must stop ostracizing ourselves from each because of cliques or limited perspectives. Our blind spot never shows all that our sisters have been through and we can learn to be more supportive, kind, respectful and friendly towards one another and be understanding that people are different but yet the same….also what one diet does for some does not mean that for all. Our bodies are different but in unity we can help each other become healthy and even stronger-better together#Im old school but thatโ€™s what the ancestors did

  21. Why do people always include race into matters? What does race have to do with how you take care of yourself? Sounds like a bunch of excuses.

  22. People refuse to take responsibility for themselves . Until we can be honest about whatever our issues are there'll be no change. WHEN it comes to hardship none had it harder than poor uneducated women did. Image not having any of these modern conveniences, grants for education, subsidized housing , no fast food restaurants and multiple kids to feed. OH, AND no day care. Just goes to show how ridiculous most of our excuses are.

  23. Obesity is a CHOICE! Eat right and take the time to workout stop getting pregnant by sorry men! These tips will help you with stress tremendously! In order for change to take place in our lives and future generations we have to be completely honest with ourselves. Careers first, worry about babies men and marriage later, TAKE CARE OF YOUR BODY and YOUR DREAMS FIRST! Itโ€™s just that simple!

  24. She's so right at the end….it's all about accountability!!! A few months ago I joined a Planet Fitness by my house….it's been like therapy for me! I'am loving myself over again and again!!!!๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿพ๐Ÿ™‹๐Ÿฝโ€โ™€๏ธโคโคโค๐Ÿคž๐Ÿฝ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿฝ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿฝ๐Ÿ‘ธ๐Ÿฝ

  25. Nobody really clapped for the lady talking about obesity because people were obese before Trump or whatever policies. I dont think there is much excuse for most men and women who dont have unpreventable illnesses. ๐Ÿคท๐Ÿพโ€โ™€๏ธ

  26. This was a horrible conversation about self care. Idk what this has to do with it. I barely have time for self care because I'm doing everything else for everyone else. They shouldve used this moment to remind women to not be afraid to set some time for yourself to relax and shut down for a second.

  27. Lose weight, we're the leader of dying from heart attacks and strokes. We must eat better and treat ourselves better, drink water.

  28. Black women in the last 50 years havent had to RESPECT or submit to Black men. Because of black men in jail prison. So many black men out of the home. So why should we black men care. Goto the gym. Have some wellpower.

  29. Total bs!!
    You are to blame for the conditions of your health. When I started hearing remarks about my weight at 13. I changed what I could. Now I work out 5 days a week. 1 hour. I also eat healthy Iโ€™m not as well to do as this lady.

    Not having insurance should motivate you to take better care of yourself.

  30. Although I don't like Trump, you can't blame him for having poor diet because this has been going on long before. Obesity in the black community is a problem and needs to be addressed.

  31. People forget that the top priority in life is our spiritual evolution. If we go through things that shake us to the core. That's the ABSOLUTE signal that we need to go inside and nurture ourselves. Nothing outside of us will change for the better if we overlook this ABSOLUTE ESSENTIAL RULE AND NUMBER ONE RESPONSIBILITY IN LIFE! Our spiritual/mental/emotional health is the only thing that truly outlasts all of the coming and goings of life! It's meant to be this way and a part of the process !

  32. Ok but no one is putting the food in your mouth. I don't need the added stress of being overweight. You have to pick a struggle. The minute they take responsibility is the minute they will begin to lose weight.

  33. Obviously telling black women to be accountable for their health is not effective. For one to take care of themselves, they must have value; but if the value of a person is selective and limiting, then what is the point of taking care of oneself? It just seems like people want all black women to somehow wake up the next morning and say "yes, im going to make a change today to better myself", just so you can feel comfortable and not feel accountable for your role in the situation. So lazy as to only suggest an unintelligent, incomplete, and disingenuous notion concerning self help–as if people havent been doing so for ages.

    We need better practical solutions. Black women need more power so they can have more control over their self care– which is multi-faceted. If you're a black women that takes care of their health in spite of Trump, that's wonderful; but please don't extrapolate your experiences to other black women unless you're a pundit on black lives–which i highly doubt.

    Thanks for reading!

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