How do you feel about yourself when you look in the mirror? Do you see a beautiful, confident woman? If you struggle with dissatisfaction about your height, weight, or shape, you’re not alone. Many women around the country struggle to find positive things to think about their bodies. This dissatisfaction can lead to an unhealthy preoccupation with your body image that can result in developing an eating disorder. To learn about our treatment options, contact our women’s only eating disorder treatment center today by calling 877.978.1667.
Positive vs. Negative Body Image
In fact, research says that being dissatisfied with your body is one of the biggest contributors to eating disorders, such as anorexia and bulimia.
When you have a positive body image, you have a clear understanding of your body and shape. You see your body as it really is. Feeling positive about your body involves you feeling confident and comfortable in your skin. It also means accepting your natural shape and size for what it is and realizing that how you look says little about your value as a person. Unfortunately, very few people have a positive body image.
Conversely, negative body image means that you have a distorted perception of your physical shape. Your dissatisfaction with your body leaves you feeling ashamed, anxious, and self-conscious. You may feel like your body is flawed in comparison to other people. You may also struggle with conditions such as:
- Low self-esteem
- Eating disorders
Dissatisfaction with your body generally begins when you’re young and can continue throughout your adult life. Women of any age can struggle with body image concerns and too often women impose harsh judgements on themselves and others with body image anxieties. Conversely, they may never come up at all.
That said, according to the National Eating Disorders Association, by elementary school, close to 50% of girls are concerned about getting fat or their weight. Furthermore, girls as young as six may begin to express concerns about their body shape. This concern continues into adolescence, with nearly half of teenage girls trying to control their weight by fasting, vomiting, skipping meals, or taking laxatives.
Body Image and Eating Disorders
Body image concerns can affect anyone, regardless of age, gender, and culture. While each person has different triggers and pressures, many American girls feel pressured to succumb to Western beauty standards. We feel like we have to be thin and “beautiful,” regardless of how our body shape looks naturally. As a result, many women feel like they need to conform to these standards in any way possible, even if it isn’t a healthy response. Often, this means that they may fall into poor eating habits, eventually spiraling into an eating disorder. At Crossroads Maine, we provide a range of eating disorder treatment programs, including:
- Anorexia treatment
- Bulimia treatment
- Avoidant/restrictive food intake disorder treatment
- Binge eating disorder treatment
Cultivating a positive body image is vital to promote diversity, accepting your body as it is, and creating a healthy body image for each individual. It’s vital that we embrace body diversity and accept all body types as good bodies. Though everyone will have days when they feel uncomfortable and awkward in their body, developing your positive body image is vital to respecting your natural shape. Then, you can overpower any negative thoughts you have, replacing them with positive, accepting, and healthy ones.
Aren’t you ready to leave your negative body image and eating disorder behind? We want to help you. Contact our women’s eating disorder treatment center today and ask us about our treatment programs by calling Crossroads Maine at 877.978.1667.