Body positivity is a movement that encourages people of all body shapes, sizes and weights to respect and accept their bodies with the goal of improving overall health and well-being.
Body image is the perceptions, feelings and beliefs a person has about their body. This includes how a person views about their body compares to society’s views and norms. Body image is influenced by how an individual feels and the reactions from people in the community.
Positive body image helps children to feel good about themselves, which flow onto every aspect of health and self-care. Positive body image is linked to positive self-worth.
When children have issues with self-worth and body image, they are more likely to be dissatisfied with their body and engage in unhealthy attitudes and behaviours around food and diet, thus increasing their risk of developing, disordered eating, eating disorders and other mental and physical health outcomes.
A child with a positive body image is comfortable with their physical appearance and is more likely to think about their body in terms of its functionality rather than its appearance.
There are many positive ways to improve your child’s body image and nurture body positivity. This section lists some key points to consider when working out the best ways to support your child in being body positive.
The goal of being body positive is to develop a strong sense of identity and self-worth that is separate from body appearance.
a) Signs Your Child May Have a Negative Body Image
I had the pleasure of writing ‘Things Your Grandmother Would Say About Nutrition That Are Right’ for Ideal Nutrition.
I was inspired to write about this topic because I love grandparents. I love my grandparents – I am lucky to be surrounded by 5 grandparents, 4 who are nearing 90 and one who is 90!
Good genes or good nutrition?
Aren’t grandmothers (and grandfathers!!) full of wisdom?!
I often find myself reflecting on how I don’t have many opportunities to soak up their wisdom with how busy life is and living interstate.
I enjoyed interviewing my grandmothers and hearing additional stories from grandmothers about their thoughts on food, eating and nutrition growing up. I even learnt a few things along the way.
Interestingly, the wisdom shared by these grandmothers form some of the foundational pieces of my nutrition philosophy from which I live and help my clients by.
In this post, Continue reading
Do you need some suggestions for how to explain to your child why chocolate is a ‘sometimes’ food without labeling food as “good” or “bad”?
Explain Why We Eat
I suggest explaining the basics of why we eat to give some context. I.e. We need to eat a variety of food every day so we can give our body lots of nutrients. We also eat food for various other reasons including for pleasure, to celebrate occasions and cope with stress (although used as an ongoing first-line strategies emotional eating may not be helpful and cause more problems) and so on. Continue reading
Last fortnight, I published a blog post title, Dietitian Mum Breaking School Rules Around Food to share my family’s story about food-shaming at school.
Due to the interest in our experience and some questions I had received from teachers asking how they can help students and parents when some students come to school with XYZ in their lunch-boxes, I decided to write this follow-up blog post.
I believe this concern over lunch-boxes is the reason we are hearing so many stories of food-shaming in schools.
Teacher’s often ask, “How do I help students and parents when some students come to school with XYZ in their lunch-boxes?”
This question is difficult to answer as each school, teacher, student and parent is different. I don’t see a one-size-fits-all approach or even a single strategy working in schools to address this concern/question.
Here are some of my thoughts on the question to add to the conversation around supporting students, families, teachers and schools to provide nutritious lunch-box choices and nutrition education.
Getting your child to eat vegetables is not your job.
Parents naturally want their children to eat their vegetables and other nutritious foods.
Many parents become so fixated on getting their children to eat vegetable that the fun is taken out of food and meal-times and eating together as a family becomes a battle ground.
To avoid turning meal times into the next world war, Continue reading
Last year, my oldest son started school. I was excited and a little apprehensive about what the year held for him. Unfortunately, this excitement wore off pretty quickly.
On day 2, my son received a card in his lunch box – “We love your healthy lunch” and a newsletter stating the school rules around what can be eaten at each lunch break.
My bubble of food joy and peace burst right there and then as damage-control kicked in.
I ended up writing a letter to the school about my experiences as a parent and an APD. I offered actionable suggestions about how the school could support my child and the school children around food, eating and nutrition.
Here is the letter I wrote:
Being a mum is hardly ever what we imagined before kids came along.
I remember enjoying the gym scene before I had kids.
I remember a friend said to me when I was pregnant that I would not be able to continue my “gym” lifestyle with small children.
Honestly, I didn’t really like hearing her comment and reacted with Continue reading
Check out my article in the Summer Edition of Nurture Parenting Magazine.
If you are anything like me, you grew up with the expectation that you ate everything on your plate.
I think this food rule came about as a way to attempt to maximise nourishment and reduce food wastage.
Decades later in the work I do as a dietitian, I know how potentially harmful this seemingly innocent food rule can be.
It distracts people from trusting themselves and listening to their body. It does not support people to regulate their own food intake or to meet their bodily needs.
In susceptible people, disordered eating and eating disorders can develop.
Next time you feel you should tell yourself or your kids to eat everything on their plate, Continue reading
Are you sick of the harmful messages like “No pain, no gain”, “Sweat is fat crying”, “Hustle to get more muscle”, “Don’t stop till you drop”, “Eat clean, train dirty” and so on???
I developed a range of products with positive non-diet messages to counteract the unhelpful and harmful messages we hear everyday living in this diet culture.
This and more!!!