Dear Ginny, My daughter is on the heavier side. I do my best to help her love herself by telling her how much I love her and that she’s beautiful to me. The problem is other people. For example, every time we see my mother she mentions my daughter’s weight. Sometimes she does this right … Continue reading Ask Ginny: What can I do when Grandma fat shames my kid?
Eating disorders are much more complex than body image, but negative body image is a hallmark of an eating disorder. We live in a culture that is strongly weight-biased and fatphobic. Our cultural messages assert that a person is healthier, smarter, and more worthy if they live in a smaller body. Weight stigma is very harmful … Continue reading Quiz: are you body positive? Plus, how to be a body positive parent and when “body positive” is not actually body positive
Eating disorders are strongly associated with low self‐esteem and poor body image. [1, 2] Self-esteem and body image must be improved in order to heal fully from an eating disorder because we can't change a behavior until we change the predisposing factors that drive that behavior.  If we tell a child that she's beautiful … Continue reading Self-esteem, body image, and eating disorders – what parents can do to help
Well-meaning educators can cause real harm by promoting dieting and weight loss at school. This includes making statements and putting up posters saying things like "eat less & move more," and "eat healthy foods." Such statements are problematic from a scientific, nutrition, health, eating disorder, and social justice standpoint. You may think you're being helpful, … Continue reading Educators: please stop promoting dieting and weight loss to children
When recovering from an eating disorder, it's quite common to gain weight. Whether your child begins recovery in a body that is underweight, of “average” weight, or “over” weight, recovery requires a loosening of the food restriction that underlies almost every eating disorder. While your child learns to eat intuitively and feed their body what it … Continue reading When your child gains weight while in recovery from an eating disorder
It is not unusual, when talking about the warning signs of teenage eating disorders, for someone to pipe up and say "that's normal teenage behavior." This comment makes me want to cry. Sure, they may be "normal" if we define normal as common, but when we're talking about body behavior, we must define "normal" as … Continue reading Body hate and obsession with appearance are not “normal” teenage behaviors
Dear Ginny, My daughter is plus size. Going shopping can be a real struggle since there are a lot of things that don't fit and just aren't flattering. When I tell her that something isn't flattering, she gets really angry. How can I say it in a nice way so that she avoids buying things … Continue reading Ask Ginny: Should I tell my daughter that an outfit is not flattering?
We must acknowledge that fat shaming is pervasive throughout our society. Almost everyone has probably fat-shamed and/or been fat-shamed at some point in their lives. People seem to feel compelled to warn other people about the dangers of being fat. This is bad enough in public forums like Twitter, on magazine covers and movie screens, but … Continue reading Are you fat shaming your kids? You’ve got to stop!
Our children who have eating disorders need to separate their souls from their bodies. This is extremely difficult, because they are surrounded by loud messages stating that their bodies drive who they are as people. We must educate our children about the media agenda that objectifies our bodies and turns them into the single most … Continue reading We suffer when we believe we are bodies first and people second – watch this awesome TED Talk by Dr. Lindsay Kite
Instagram is a great app, and it's grown rapidly due to its image-heavy platform. Instagram is not inherently bad, but research suggests that people who use Instagram - particularly young women - need to be cautious about managing what they see on their feeds. The greatest danger for young women on Instagram is images of … Continue reading 10 facts you absolutely need to know about Instagram and body image in young women