Disordered Eating – Part 1: The Toxic Culture Around Body Image

Podcast Therapists image with three therapists and their logo for their episode about the toxic culture around body image.

The culture we live in is toxic. The way the media shows us we’re supposed to look, act, and feel, has a massive negative impact on our body image and also our kids’.

With the huge increase in disordered eating we’re seeing throughout the pandemic, we’re starting this series within our podcast all around disordered eating. In this first episode, we focus on how we see the culture negatively impact folks and ways we can combat this for ourselves and our kids.

“The problem is that the way that it’s presented is like:
‘If I lose weight, I will be happier’“

We live in a toxic culture regarding body image

Images of trained bodies and photoshopped skin and hair are everywhere around us and our teens see it, day in, day out. Often with a hidden message that got ingrained into our thoughts:

When I lose weight, I’ll be happier.
When I have a six-pack, I’ll find a better partner.
When I lose a few inches, people will take me more seriously.

That’s the image we get from social media and other media outlets, and it has even found its way into the way we talk about our own bodies and that of others. When this is what our kids see everywhere around them, they’ll start to think that it’s real (or even normal) and that this is what they’re supposed to be doing. It’s incredibly hard to have a healthy relationship with food and bodies in the culture we live in today.

We believe there’s not enough education about bodies, the way the body naturally changes, etc. to even all this out. With this series, we hope to create more awareness and give you helpful tips and insights.

More about Virginia Family Therapy

Virginia Family Therapy is a mental health practice serving individuals, families, and our community. VFT is designed to help people at all stages and from all walks of life by offering therapists and physicians with diverse backgrounds and specialties via face-to-face, walk-and-talk, and telemedicine appointments. Throughout, we are committed to developing strengths-based, authentic, and long-lasting relationships with you and your children. We hope to provide you with the support and insight you need to help your family navigate life’s hard times and joys.

Contact us here.

In this episode on the toxic culture around body image, we cover:

  • How we see the culture negatively impacting adults and teens;
  • The image (social) media paints about how we should look, act, and feel;
  • The role of Social Media’s algorithm in the images we see;
  • What we as parents can do and say about this.

Resources and links mentioned in this episode

Disclaimer: Please remember we are real live therapists, however this is a podcast and is not considered a therapy session. Not only because there is no co-pay but also because we can’t speak to your individual experiences. We are here to help you keep raising healthy kids. And remember, if you are an imperfect parent, we are right there with you. If you or someone you love is in immediate danger, please call your local crisis hotline or go to your nearest emergency room.