Dieting and Body Image

So I’ve been reading the “Body Image Warrior Week” posts over at Fit and Feminist. They are great and they got me to really thinking about dieting and body image.

Usually negative body image and dieting go hand in hand. But dieting doesn’t solve negative body image.

If you can’t accept your body as it is now, you won’t accept it even if you find a diet that makes you look exactly the way you always wanted to. No matter how “good” you look, if you have a negative self-image, you will always be able to find some flaw.

So stop looking for the flaws. Stop thinking that if you just find the right diet you will be able to lose enough weight or fat to correct them. Stop thinking that dieting is the solution.

You can’t change the body you were given.

A healthy diet will make you look good, but you already have to be content. No matter how great the transformation in your body, a diet won’t create a positive self-image.

BUT, if you find a diet that will make you healthier, that will make you feel better, you will find a diet that makes your body look the best that it can!

That is why I’ve been so gung-ho about the Man Bicep diet. I found something that has made me healthier and feel better with the added bonus that my abs show.

My body may not be what someone else considers to be perfect, but guess what?…I like how I look! (Although I’m still weirded out when I log in and see like 50 bazillion pictures of myself EVERYWHERE, but it’s proof right!?! haha)

Is that cocky? No. Is it confident? Yes. Am I happy? Most definitely.

But I’m not only happy with my body because I feel it “looks good.” I’m happy with my body becauseĀ I like that I can lift more weight than is necessary. I like that I can sprint and paddle board and even occasionally eat till I have a food baby and can only roll around in pain and moan.

I love my body’s strength and feeling of health. Yes it has flaws, but there isn’t a person out there who doesn’t see a flaw no matter how “perfect” someone else thinks their body is.

And while I feel better and healthier when my abs are showing, I’m just as happy in my own skin when Chinese food and ice cream have hidden them (Ok so not quite as happy, but that is mainly because I usually feel pretty ill from the bad food binge-ing!)

So stop looking for the flaws in your body and realize how wonderful it is.

And I’m not undermining the importance of committing to a healthy lifestyle. I’m just saying a diet won’t correct a negative body image.

A healthy diet, however, does have a big pay-off – one bigger than 6 pack abs…You will feel freaking healthy and good!

Posted on March 2, 2012, in Body Image and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. I had no idea this week was devoted to Eating Disorders….there should be a month devoted to bring awareness to them! But guess that would put a damper on the diet-pill industry right now.

    I agree…a ‘diet’ doesn’t make bad body image go away . It won’t make others love you. Losing weight and getting attention won’t make it go away either. Loving your body and treating it with respect is the best ‘diet’….and then we can tune in and feed it what it needs to perform.

  2. Love this! Yes, dieting will not fix a negative self-image, as that is something that runs so much deeper than just the numbers on the scale. In fact, if anything, I’d be willing to bet that dieting might actually contribute to a poor self-image, because so many people can’t keep them up and aren’t successful on them, and so they start thinking that it’s because they suck and are undisciplined when the reality is that it is very difficult to restrict calories with the goal of weight loss.

    It seems better to learn to care for the body you’ve got and to treat it with respect then to exert a lot of blood/sweat/tears trying to transform it into some “ideal” that may very well be unattainable.

  1. Pingback: Weekend Randomness – March 16 « Fit and Feminist

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