Rowan House is supporting National Eating Disorder week, we have increased our knowledge on ‘What is an Eating Disorder’ by teaming together with our Psychotherapeutic Counsellor Julie Field who we interviewed in our last blog.

Julie has now go on to speak about What is Body Image.

What is body image?

Is it the subjective sense we have of our appearance and our body.

Unfortunately, this is often different from the objective / actual size and shape of your body.

Consider this: by the age of 10, most girls are afraid of becoming fat! More adolescent school girls diet than boys.

At college – a higher percentage of women than men report consistent dislikes about their bodies. Women in general report more negative attitudes about their physical appearance than men. Sadly, negative body image begins young and lasts their entire lives.

In society ‘thin is beautiful and beautiful is good’ prevails. Consequently women use weight as a yardstick to measure self-worth and attractiveness.

love your body, illustration in vector format

Attempts to meet this ideal are often ineffective in the long run and can lead to physical, psychological and behavioural problems including obsessions about food. Other effects in the pursuit for a perfect body include low self-esteem, feeling of inferiority, irritability and memory problems. They can also include loss of libido.

Body dissatisfaction can also be associated with depression, anxiety, relationship problems and social introversion. It would be true to say a high price is paid for being at war with your body. Feeling at home with our bodies is essential to our wellbeing. This is not possible if we are obsessively controlling calories and continually daydreaming about weight and food.

“To lose confidence in one’s body is to lose confidence In ourselves”.