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How To Stop Your Daughter From Hating Her Body

Between celebrities and supermodels today’s media set high and unrealistic standards for appearance, causing women to be critical of their own bodies.  The pressure women feel to have the “perfect body” leaves them with feelings of dissatisfaction, a risk factor for eating disorders says Shannon Snapp, Ph.D., and her colleagues at University of Arizona. Snapp and her colleagues looked at first-year college women who are particularly vulnerable to body dissatisfaction and placing a high value on appearance. Their study identified the following five factors that promote positive body image for young adult women:

1) High family support.
2) Low levels of perceived socio-cultural pressure from family, friends, and the media regarding the importance of achieving a ‘thin and beautiful’ ideal.
3) Rejection of the ‘superwoman’ ideal, which is the desire to excel in many diverse roles such as being thin and beautiful, a loving mother, and also an independent career woman.
4) Positive physical self-concept.
5) Ability to deal with stress.

Researchers conclude, “It is particularly important for women to develop a sense of self-worth that is not solely based on appearance, and to build resilience to pressures they may receive from family, friends and the media.”

Based on these five factors, the researchers created recommendations for women including the development and use of coping skills, participation in daily exercise and appreciation of the body, and promotion of emotional well-being and balance in life.

Source: Sex Roles

About Dr. Julie Hanks, LCSW:
Dynamic self & relationship expert Dr. Julie de Azevedo Hanks, LCSW loves to make a difference for women. She owns Wasatch Family Therapy and regularly contributes to KSL TV's Studio 5, and her advice has been featured nationally including Wall Street Journal, Parenting, Fox News, and others. Connect on Facebook & Twitter. Her books The Burnout Cure and The Assertiveness Guide are now available.

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