Your Body is Brilliant: Body Respect for Children By Sigrun Danielsdottir

Bodies do all sorts of amazing things, like move around, grow bigger and heal themselves. Bodies also come in all sorts of shapes and sizes and we need to take care of them so that they stay healthy and strong. If we listen to our bodies they tell us exactly what they need.

The colourful illustrations in this unique picture book will encourage children to love their bodies from an early age. By learning about all the wonderful things bodies can do, and how each body is different and unique, children will be inspired to take good care of their bodies throughout their lives. Promoting respect for body diversity among children will also encourage kindness and help prevent bullying.

This book is ideal for children aged 4-7 to read at home or school, either alone or with a parent, family member, teacher or other caring professional.

What I like About Me! By Allia Zobel Nola and Miki Yamamoto
What I like About Me! By Allia Zobel Nola and Miki Yamamoto

What I like About Me! By Allia Zobel Nola and Miki Yamamoto

This fun-loving book shows kids that, in a world where fitting in is the norm, being different makes us special.

Raising Body Positive Teens: A Parent's Guide to Diet-Free Living, Exercise and Body Image By Signe Darpinian, Wendy Sterling, Shelley Aggarwal
Raising Body Positive Teens: A Parent's Guide to Diet-Free Living, Exercise and Body Image By Signe Darpinian, Wendy Sterling, Shelley Aggarwal

Raising Body Positive Teens: A Parent’s Guide to Diet-Free Living, Exercise and Body Image By Signe Darpinian, Wendy Sterling, Shelley Aggarwal

In a world fraught with diet-culture and weight stigma, many parents worry about their child’s relationship with their body and food. This down-to-earth guide is an invaluable resource allowing parents to take proactive actions in promoting a friendship with food, and preventative actions to minimize the risk factors for the development of eating disorders.

Love Your Body By Jessica Sanders

Love Your Body introduces the language of self-love and self-care to help build resilience, while representing and celebrating diverse bodies, encouraging you to appreciate your uniqueness.

Good Enough By Jen Petro-Roy
Good Enough By Jen Petro-Roy

Good Enough By Jen Petro-Roy

Written by an eating disorder survivor and activist, Good Enough is a realistic depiction of inpatient eating disorder treatment, and a moving story about a girl who has to fight herself to survive.

Celebrate Your Body (And It's Changes, Too!): A Body-Positive Guide for Girls 8+ By Sonya Renee Taylor
Celebrate Your Body (And It's Changes, Too!): A Body-Positive Guide for Girls 8+ By Sonya Renee Taylor

Celebrate Your Body (And It’s Changes, Too!): A Body-Positive Guide for Girls 8+ By Sonya Renee Taylor

A body-positive guide to help girls ages 8 to 12 navigate the changes of puberty and grow into women.

A Kid's Book About Body Image By Rebecca Alexander
A Kid's Book About Body Image By Rebecca Alexander

A Kid’s Book About Body Image By Rebecca Alexander

This book shares positive ways kids can think about their body, their feelings about it, and how to love it the way it is.

Bodies are Cool By Tyler Feder
Bodies are Cool By Tyler Feder

Bodies are Cool By Tyler Feder

This picture book is a pure celebration of all the different human bodies that exist in the world. Highlighting the various skin tones, body shapes, and hair types is just the beginning in this truly inclusive book.

The Jots of Becoming By Lucie Waldman
The Jots of Becoming By Lucie Waldman

The Jots of Becoming By Lucie Waldman

The Jots of Becoming captures the story of my recovery from my Eating Disorder using journal entries containing insights and messages of hope. As someone who grew up involved in the Jewish community, the Jots of Becoming features narratives on recovering while Jewish.

the longest match
the longest match

The Longest Match: Rallying to Defeat an Eating Disorder in Midlife By Betsy Brenner

The Longest Match: Rallying to Defeat an Eating Disorder in Midlife is a beautifully written and heartfelt memoir illustrating the trajectory from early childhood, through adolescence and early adulthood, to midlife when eating disorder thoughts and behaviors took over the author’s life. Journal entries reveal occasional negative thoughts about her weight or food in younger years, but the stressors of midlife knocked this high functioning woman off her feet.

Pork Belly Tacos with a Side of Anxiety by Yvonne Castaneda
Pork Belly Tacos with a Side of Anxiety by Yvonne Castaneda

Pork Belly Tacos with a Side of Anxiety by Yvonne Castaneda

In Pork Belly Tacos with a Side of Anxiety, Yvonne Castañeda shares vibrant stories of her childhood growing up in Miami as the daughter of humble immigrants from Mexico and Cuba . . . and how she came to develop an unhealthy relationship with food.

Body Kindness by Rebecca Scritchfield
Body Kindness by Rebecca Scritchfield

Body Kindness by Rebecca Scritchfield

Create a healthier and happier life by treating yourself with compassion rather than shame.
Imagine a graph with two lines. One indicates happiness, the other tracks how you feel about your body. If you’re like millions of people, the lines do not intersect. But what if they did?
This practical, inspirational, and visually lively book shows you the way to a sense of well-being attained by understanding how to love, connect, and care for yourself—and that includes your mind as well as your body.

The Body Liberation Project: How Understanding Racism and Diet Culture Helps Cultivate Joy and Build Collective Freedom By Chrissy King
The Body Liberation Project: How Understanding Racism and Diet Culture Helps Cultivate Joy and Build Collective Freedom By Chrissy King

The Body Liberation Project: How Understanding Racism and Diet Culture Helps Cultivate Joy and Build Collective Freedom By Chrissy King

From author and wellness personality Chrissy King, an exciting, genre-redefining narrative mix of memoir, inspiration, and activities and prompts, with timely messages about social and racial justice and how the world needs to move beyond body positivity to something even more exciting and revolutionary: body liberation.

The Body is Not an Apology: The Power of Radical Self-Love
The Body is Not an Apology: The Power of Radical Self-Love

The Body is Not an Apology: The Power of Radical Self-Love

The Body Is Not an Apology offers radical self-love as the balm to heal the wounds inflicted by violent systems of oppression

The Art of Body Acceptance: Strengthen Your Relationship with Yourself Through Therapeutic Creative Exercises By Ashlee Bennett
The Art of Body Acceptance: Strengthen Your Relationship with Yourself Through Therapeutic Creative Exercises By Ashlee Bennett

The Art of Body Acceptance: Strengthen Your Relationship with Yourself Through Therapeutic Creative Exercises By Ashlee Bennett

Ashlee Bennett will teach you how to reclaim your creativity and make amends with your body using art.

You are Enough By Jen Petro-Roy
You are Enough By Jen Petro-Roy

You are Enough By Jen Petro-Roy

This nonfiction self-help book for young readers with disordered eating and body image problems delivers real talk about eating disorders and body image, provides tools and information for recovery, and offers suggestions for dealing with the media messages that contribute so much to disordered eating.

Reclaiming Body Trust: A Path to Healing & Liberation
Reclaiming Body Trust: A Path to Healing & Liberation

Reclaiming Body Trust: A Path to Healing & Liberation

Informed by the personal body stories of the hundreds of people they have worked with, Reclaiming Body Trust delineates an intersectional, social justice?orientated path to healing in three phases: The Rupture, The Reckoning, and The Reclamation. Throughout, readers will be anchored by the authors’ innovative and revolutionary Body Trust framework to discover a pathway out of a rigid, mechanistic way of thinking about the body and into a more authentic, sustainable way to occupy and nurture our bodies.

iMove: Helping Your Clients Heal from Compulsive Exercise By Amy Gardner
iMove: Helping Your Clients Heal from Compulsive Exercise By Amy Gardner

iMove: Helping Your Clients Heal from Compulsive Exercise By Amy Gardner

Pulling from her owen experience with compulsive exercise and from her work with many clients, Amy Gardner shows you how to help your clients move out of a compulsive exercise pattern.

How to Raise an Intuitive Eater by Sumner Brooks and Amee Severson
How to Raise an Intuitive Eater by Sumner Brooks and Amee Severson

How to Raise an Intuitive Eater by Sumner Brooks and Amee Severson

A manifesto for parents to help them reject diet culture and raise the next generation to have a healthy relationship with food and their bodies.

Fearing the Black Body: The Racial Origins of Fat Phobia By Sabrina Strings

An important and original work, Fearing the Black Body argues convincingly that fat phobia isn’t about health at all, but rather a means of using the body to validate race, class, and gender prejudice.

Decolonizing Wellness: A QTBIPOC-Centered Guide to Escape the Diet Trap, Heal Your Self-Image, and Achieve Body Liberation By Dalia Kinsey
Decolonizing Wellness: A QTBIPOC-Centered Guide to Escape the Diet Trap, Heal Your Self-Image, and Achieve Body Liberation By Dalia Kinsey

Decolonizing Wellness: A QTBIPOC-Centered Guide to Escape the Diet Trap, Heal Your Self-Image, and Achieve Body Liberation By Dalia Kinsey

Become the healthiest and happiest version of yourself using wellness tools designed specifically for BIPOC and LGBTQ folks.

meganjaynecrabbe

Megan Jayne Crabbe (she/her) is best known for changing the narrative of how women feel about their bodies. She is the author of Body Positive Power.

your.latina.nutritionist

Dalina Soto RD LDN (she/her) is an anti-diet dietitian. She founded Your Latina Nutritionist because she’s passionate about building nourishing new narratives for us that don’t include depriving ourselves of the foods we grew up eating. Her work is about supporting you to reclaim the flavor and enjoyment of your life by celebrating the foods you love and incorporating them into your daily life with education and awareness.

whitneytrotter.rd

Whtiney Trotter, MS, RDN/LDN, RN, RYT (she/her) is a Registered Dietitian and RN, Anti-racism Educator/Consultant and Human Trafficking Activist

newmoonrd

Meghan McGann, RD (she/her) is an anti-diet dietitian who advocates for inclusive care.

theshirarose

Shira Rose (she/her) is an eating disorder therapist, LCSW who operates from a fat positive + Health At Every Size framework

the_bodylib_advocate

Patrilie Hernandez is a self-described culture examiner, knowledge sharer, weaver of relationships and ideas. higher-weight, multiracial, neuroatypical, bisexual, genderfluid femme of the Puerto Rican diaspora. They have worked in the health and nutrition sector as an educator, advocate, and policy analyst for over 15 years, which has shaped their understanding of how the pursuit of “health” seamlessly intersects with the built environment, equity, and social justice. It wasn’t until they were diagnosed with an eating disorder in December 2017 that they realized how much of their own disordered behaviors and thoughts around food, health, and bodies infiltrated all aspects of their personal life and career.

resilientfatgoddex

SJ (they/them) is a Coach, Consultant, And Soon To Be Social Worker Focused On Fat Liberation Based In Anti-Racism And Anti-Colonialism.

ragenchastain

Ragen Chastain (she/her) is a Speaker, Writer, Researcher, Board Certified Patient Advocate, ACE Certified Health Coach and Functional Fitness Specialist. She primarily writes about the intersections of weight science, weight stigma, health and healthcare at the WeightAndHealthcare substack

queer.art_therapist

Wednesdae Reim Ifrach (They/Them) REAT, ATR-BC, ATCS, LPC, NCC, CLAT, LCMHC, LPCC is Fat, Trans/Non-Binary, Queer, Disabled. They hold a master’s degree in art therapy and their specialities include Their current specialties include gender affirming care, fat and body activism, intersectional social justice, complex trauma and eating disorder treatment.

pinkmantaray

Schuyler Bailar (he/him) is the first trans D1 NCAA men’s athlete. He is also in recovery from an eating disorder and self-harm.

nic.mcdermid

Nic McDermid (she/her) is a fierce activist, feminist, advocate and content creator whose work focuses on disrupting the dominant discourse around weight and bodies, and challenging the ways in which certain types of bodies are both idolised and idealised.

nalgonapositivitypride

Non-conventional eating disorder awareness organization run by Gloria Lucas (she/her). Her work focuses on eating disorder harm reduction.

thrivewithmeg

Meghan Watson (she/her) is a licensed psychotherapist, writer & consultant. She is the founder of the group practice Bloom Psychology & Wellness — a therapy collective of Black, Indigenous, South Asian, and Multi-racial therapists with a focus on building connection and fostering emotional growth in communities of colour. She shares reflections, skills and tools on how to show up as your whole self through a self compassionate and growth focused lens on her Instagram page

drrachelmillner

Dr. Rachel Millner is a psychologist, Certified Eating Disorder Specialist and Supervisor, and a Certified Body Trust® provider. Her work is trauma-informed, fat-positive, anti-diet and rooted in feminist theory, relational theory, social justice, and body liberation

bodyimage_therapist

Ashlee Bennett, AThR is an art therapist and artist and the author of The Art of Body Acceptance. Her areas of special interest include body image, internalized weight stigma/fat phobia, disordered eating/eating disorders, chronic dieting, and trauma.

bodyimagewithbri

Bri Campos is a body image educator who teaches body acceptance through grief

bodyjusticetherapist

Allyson Inez Ford is an eating disorders and OCD therapist. Social justice is an integral part of her work and she operates from a HAES lens.

bodyliberationwithlindley

Lindley Ashline is a body liberation photographer, writer and activist

decolonizingfitness

Ilya Parker founded Decolonizing Fitness in an effort to help dismantle toxic fitness culture. It is an online resource hub for coaches, gym owners, personal trainers and anyone who is invested in cultivating movement spaces that are more affirming and supportive to diverse bodies.

dietitiananna

Anna Sweeney, MS, RDN, CED-S is a relational nutrition therapist who specializes in eating disorders, disordered eating, and chronic illness

dr.jenniewh

Dr. Jennie Wang-Hall is a liberatory eating disorders psychologist creating community spaces for anti-carceral and agentic care

drcolleenreichmann

Dr. Colleen Reichmann is a clinical psychologist whose writing and work focus on body image, eating disorders, motherhood, and feminism.

edadhd_therapist

Stacie Fanelli, LCSW is an AuDHD eating disorder therapist who discusses neurodivergence, EDs, intersectionality & treatment reform

encouragingdietitian

Christyna Johnson, MS, RD, LDN is a non-diet registered dietitian specializing in eating disorder, disordered eating, intuitive eating, and body image. She sees the world through a liberation lens and advocates for collective care to move us forward.

heydrsand

Dr. Sand Chang (they/them) is a Nonbinary Somatic Therapist & DEI Consultant. Their work focuses on body liberation, trans health, and eating disorders

The Body Grievers Club

Brianna Campos is changing the cultural conversation from diets and rules to acceptance and freedom. This is a podcast that explores the ins and outs of body image, self-esteem, diet culture, self-love, and finding peace as you come home to your body.

Peace Meal

Peace Meal covers topics related to eating disorders, body image, and how society may influence our thinking.

All Bodies. All Foods

All Bodies. All Foods., a podcast by The Renfrew Center, covers topics related to eating disorders, body image and mental health. Samantha DeCaro, Ph.D., (she/her) and Ashley Vicari, NCC, LPC, (she/her) sit down with different experts in the field and those in recovery.

Body Dysmorphic Disorder & Anorexia Nervosa

Body Dysmorphic Disorder & Anorexia Nervosa

by Eating Disorder Hope Guest Columnist, Margot Rittenhouse, MS, PLPC, NCC

The way that we view our bodies and feel existing in them is of the utmost importance. Body image can influence our self-view, feelings of worth, and fulfillment with our lives and ourselves. A negative or toxic body image has implications that can vary from feeling uncomfortable in one’s skin to having low self-worth to developing disordered eating, exercising, and living habits. Body Dysmorphic Disorder is commonly discussed in disordered eating circles and important to explore for anyone that loves or works with someone with an eating disorder.

Beyond Body Image

You are likely aware that body image involves the representations an individual has about their physical appearance. What is less commonly discussed is that body image is the subcategories body image can fall into – perceptual, affective, cognitive, and behavioral [1].

Perceptual body image refers to how an individual perceives their body. For example, feeling that they are “too thin” or have a body part that is “too big.” Affective body image is the feeling that one has about their body, “especially the amount of satisfaction or dissatisfaction you experience in relation to your appearance, weight, shape, and body parts [1].”

Cognitive body image refers to the thoughts and beliefs that individuals have about themselves. Finally, behavioral body image includes the behaviors individuals engage in as a result of their body images, such as disordered eating, excessive exercising, or self-harming behaviors.

Considering body image from each of these perspectives can help an individual look more deeply at how they relate to their body and learn which area their self-view and body image is most harmful.

Body Dysmorphic Disorder

Woman struggling with Body Dysmorphic DisorderFor an individual with Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD), all 4 of these areas of their body image are likely distorted. Individuals with BDD go beyond having negative thoughts about their body to have an “intense preoccupation with a perceived flaw in one’s physical appearance [2].”

For those that struggle with BDD, “large amounts of time may be spent checking their appearance in the mirror, comparing their appearance with others, and engaging in behaviours designed to try to hide or conceal the area of concern [2].”

Typically, these perceived flaws are non-existent or so insignificant that others do not perceive them. Even so, being told this will not decrease the obsessiveness these individuals feel.

“BDD is a distressing condition which is often associated with depression, social anxiety, and feelings of shame. BDD often creates significant interference with day-to-day activities, as it can limit one’s desire to leave the house, socialise, and participate in activities such as work or study [2].”

BDD and Anorexia Nervosa

BDD is commonly associated with eating disorders, as individuals will engage in disordered eating and exercise behaviors to alter a perceived flaw. A recent study found that Anorexia Nervosa and BDD also have a neurological component in common.

The study, completed by UCLA researchers, determined that “found that abnormalities in brain function are related to severity of symptoms in both disorders, and may be useful in developing new treatment methods [3].”

One study creator, Dr. Wesley Kerr, stated, “these are brain abnormalities, and how we treat those brain abnormalities could be with psychotherapy, or psychiatric medications, but brain changes need to happen in order to address these disorders [3].”

This study, and numerous others, serve to remind us that disorders such as anorexia nervosa and BDD are not simply choices related to eating (or not eating) food. These disorders are much complex, with biopsychosocial components that must be considered.


Resources:

[1] Unknown (2020). What is body image. National Eating Disorders Collaboration, retrieved from https://www.nedc.com.au/assets/Fact-Sheets/NEDC-Fact-Sheet-Body-Image.pdf.

[2] Anderson, R. et al (2012). Understanding body dysmorphic disorder. Centre for Clinical Interventions. ISBN: 0 9757995 9 2.

[3] University of California – Los Angeles Health Sciences (2020). People with anorexia and body dysmorphic disorder show brain similarities, differences: Key patterns of brain function are more pronounced with more severe symptoms.” Science Daily, 11.


About the Author:

Image of Margot Rittenhouse.Margot Rittenhouse, MS, PLPC, NCC is a therapist who is passionate about providing mental health support to all in need and has worked with clients with substance abuse issues, eating disorders, domestic violence victims, and offenders, and severely mentally ill youth.

As a freelance writer for Eating Disorder Hope and Addiction Hope and a mentor with MentorConnect, Margot is a passionate eating disorder advocate, committed to de-stigmatizing these illnesses while showing support for those struggling through mentoring, writing, and volunteering. Margot has a Master’s of Science in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Johns Hopkins University.

7 Things Providers Need to Know about Gender Identity and its Effect on Body Image

Written by Christine Lang, MSW, M.Div. from Walden Behavioral Care 

Christine Lang is an adolescent clinician in the partial hospitalization and intensive outpatient programs for Walden Behavioral Care, providing individual, family and group counseling for adolescents and families with eating disorders. This includes a specialized treatment track for LGBTQ individuals

Did you know that transgender youth are four times more likely than their female, cisgender, heterosexual counterparts to have eating disorders? There are many factors that contribute to this population’s higher incidence of increased rates of body dissatisfaction, elevated rates of co-occurring mental health conditions such as depression and anxiety and increased risk for bullying, psycho-social stressors and emotional distress.

Even if you don’t consider yourself a specialist in working with these populations, it is important to have a general understanding of why they might co-exist and how you can best support individuals who present with either or both of these conditions.

1. Both transgender people and people with eating disorders may experience body dissatisfaction – the source of it may be both different and similar. In our culture, we seem obsessed with a particular ideal of “beauty” — one that has prompted an unhealthy diet culture, as well as general body unhappiness. Similarly, a trans person’s body may not match up to our society’s binary gender ideals of either “masculine” or “feminine” bodies, which may cause trans people to embody another layer of body dissatisfaction; neither are their bodies the right gender nor do they fit society’s ideal body type of that gender.

2. According to the current research, it seems that the idea of “an ideal thinness” and the idea of “an ideal femininity/masculinity” are risk factors for developing eating disorders.

3. Not everyone whose gender identities differ from their sex assigned at birth has a negative body image.

4. As clinicians, it’s important to help individuals to understand the function of their eating disorder. Many transgender people report using food and behaviors as a way to manipulate their bodies in an attempt to “better” align with mainstream culture’s idea of beauty and femininity / masculinity. I’ve also seen cases where a client’s eating disorder has nothing to do with either of those things—rather eating disorder behaviors are utilized as a way to cope with difficult situations / emotions. Having this information will help to guide treatment and determine the most appropriate interventions.

5. Our job is also to create a safe space where clients can notice and process their negative thoughts. This means, doing your best to ask for and use preferred pronouns and being aware of the unique stressors that can often be experienced by this population. Eating disorder treatment is hard—we want to make sure we are fostering an environment where individuals can feel comfortable making their recovery their number one priority.

6. Just as we don’t blame parents for the development of their child’s eating disorder, it is important that we help individuals understand that they are not to blame for being gender dysphoric. Those who have gender dysphoria experience a fair amount of body dissatisfaction because of external pressures created by society, which often become internalized forms of oppression. As such, it is important to work with individuals on identifying the difference between external oppression that has been internalized vs their own values and beliefs. Similarly, we work with individuals with eating disorders to be better able to distinguish between the voice of the ED and their own unique thoughts and feelings.

7. In providing an ongoing clinical space for individuals to explore the intersection of their gender identity and eating disorder behaviors, as well as the appropriateness of hormone therapy for themselves, we as clinicians will be better able to help provide long term eating disorder recovery.

If you or someone you work with is transgender and living with an eating disorder, there is hope for recovery.

Resources:

a) Author: Monica Algars, Katarina Alanko, Pekka Santtilla, N. Kenneth Sandnabba
Title: Disordered Eating and Gender Identity Disorder: A Qualitative Study
b) Jennifer Couturier; Bharadwaj Pindiprolu, Sheri Findlay, Natasha Johnson
Title: Anorexia Nervosa and Gender Dysphoria in Two Adolescents.
c) Stuart B. Murray, Evelyn Boon, Stephen W. Touyz
Title: Diverging Eating Psychopathology in Transgendered Eating Disorder Patients: A report of two cases.
d) Monica Algars, Pekka Santtila, N. Kenneth Sandnabba
Title: Conflicted Gender Identity, Body Dissatisfaction and Disordered Eating in Adult Men and Women
e) Lindsay A. Ewan, Amy B. Middleman, Jennifer Feldmann
Title: Treatment of Anorexia in the Context of Transsexuality: A Case Report
f) Sarah E. Strandjord, Henry Ng, Ellen S. Rome
Title: Effects of Treating Gender Dysphoria and Anorexia Nervosa in a Transgender Adolescent: Lessons Learned
g) Bethany Alice Jones, Emma Haycraft, Sarah Murjan, Jon Arcelus
Title: Body Dissatisfaction and Disordered Eating in Trans People: A Systematic review of the Literature

 

This blog was originally published on https://www.waldeneatingdisorders.com/7-things-providers-need-to-know-about-gender-identify-and-its-effect-on-body-image/ and is republished here with permission.