Over 90 Percent of Girls and Women Don’t Love Their Bodies, Research Shows

Over 90 Percent of Girls and Women Don’t Love Their Bodies, Research Shows featured image
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Throughout my life, my relationship with my body has been one of the most difficult and tumultuous parts of my identity. Having been raised as a dancer, it was almost required for me to look at and scrutinize my body day in and day out. As I got older and left the dance world behind, the negative thoughts about my body remained, and the feeling was often very isolating. But, as I found out through a panel with Oprah Winfrey and Weight Watchers last week, I am far from alone in my struggles.

Last Thursday, Oprah Winfrey teamed up with Weight Watchers to host a “Making the Shift” panel packed with celebrities and weight health experts in hopes of dismantling the harmful diet culture and body shaming habits that dominate our culture today. During the event, founder of IT Cosmetics and best-selling author of Worthy, Jamie Kern Lima took to the stage to share some eye-opening statistics about body image in women, and some advice for how we can move forward.

Lima on Body Image: How We Can Rewrite the Narrative

When Jamie Kern Lima founded IT Cosmetics, she dealt with her fair share of body shaming. As Lima candidly shared with Oprah and the livestream audience, one of her original investor prospects turned her down because he didn’t believe people would buy makeup from “someone who looked like her.” While a comment like that would discourage some, it only prompted Lima to become an even bigger advocate for body acceptance and self worth, catapulting her to write her best-selling book Worthy: How to Believe You Are Enough and Transform Your Life.

Throughout her extensive research for the book, Lima came across some staggering statistics about body image today, including the fact that—per Mario Palermo’s 5 Facts About Body Image—a whopping 91 percent of women and girls don’t love their bodies. Furthermore, 80 percent of women don’t believe they are enough, and 73 percent of men share the same thought. So, how do we move forward? As Lima explains, it starts with unlearning the idea that our weight is in any way tied to our worth.

“What happens when we believe that our weight determines our worth is that we start waiting on our weight to live our best lives,” Lima says. “We start saying ‘no’ to the party, we say ‘no’ to the swimsuit, we don’t ask for the raise or the promotion, we hide in our cover up on the beach while everyone else is splashing in the waves. We tell ourselves this story that, ‘when I finally hit that goal weight, then I’m going to be happy.’ If you believe that your weight determines your worth, that is a lie, and it is time to unlearn that lie.” To hear more from Lima and the dozens of other incredible guests on Weight Watchers’ “Making the Shift” livestream, click here.

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