One of the strongest clichés to disrupt about body acceptance is the fact that this means not to consider your health anymore.
Although it’s impossible to talk about everyone’s experience, generally embracing your body has to do with approving and loving your body despite its real or perceived imperfections.
This means accepting that your body is fatter or thinner than others, that your eyes are a little crooked, that you have a disability that makes it difficult to walk, that you have health problems – and all of these doesn’t lead you to be ashamed of your body. Body acceptance allows a diversity of bodies in the world, avoiding the concept that there is a wrong way to have one.
We all suffer the oppression of weight and body
Body acceptance concerns anyone who has a body. Because the oppression of weight and body is something that concerns everyone. When you live in a society that says one type of body is wrong and another is good, those who feel included in the definition of good constantly fear that their bodies become wrong. And those who have “wrong bodies” do everything they can to have good bodies.
In this process they both torture their bodies and do everything to enter or remain in the category of “good”. But nobody wins in this fight. The fight against the body creates an incredible amount of stress both on the body and on the mind. And when you stare at what you don’t like about your body and try to change it, you commit more dangerous behaviors that don’t lead to better health. Think about the limitations of food, excessive training, risky and invasive surgical procedures.
Perché accettare il proprio corpo
Loving your body and respecting its signals instead allows you to start eating in a nutritious way, also recovering from any eating disorders; to get better medical care because you know you have a right to something beyond losing weight; to find the trust necessary to establish the boundaries with people in your life and in tyour relationships, pretending to be loved without having to settle for; to stop comparing with everyone and be free from the pain of hatred towards yourself.
Embracing your body is not neglecting intentionally your health. Rather, the acceptance of the body has positive effects on health. Because embracing and loving your body allows you to free yourself from the desire to damage your body.
People with different bodies already face a lot of stigma, discrimination and exclusion every day to add even more shame to this. Embracing your body therefore allows you to refuse to accept body shaming. And this can only create a strong change, not only in your life but also in those around us – who will receive a positive message as a response to hatred.