5 Ways to Keep Body-Shaming From Making You Sick

woman looking in mirrorPlease stop judging your body. Turns out, the horrible things we say to ourselves about our bodies aren't just bad for our self-esteem. Body-shaming yourself could actually be making you sick.


It’s science, ladies. We have to stop shaming ourselves over everything we perceive to be wrong with our bodies!

The brainiacs over at Bucknell University conducted two separate studies that found women who feel ashamed about their bodies get sick more often and have worse overall health than those who went a little easier on themselves. 

And get this: Body shame recorded in September actually translated to a form of sickness come December.

More from The Stir: 11 Reasons to Celebrate Your Big, Awesome Thighs

Researchers explain that women who are their own worst haters are less responsive to their own physical needs and may not evaluate their own health as well or seek health care as speedily as women who are kinder to their bodies.

And so, friend, here are 5 simple things you can do to help give your poor thighs a break already, and boost your health along the way. 

1. Take a compliment already! Are you one of those chicks who every time someone gives you a compliment you shoot it down? Amy Schumer has a totally brilliant sketch on this, in which she shows us how ridiculous it is how we argue with every bit of positive reinforcement we get about ourselves and our looks. "I love your hat!" her friend tells her. "Ugh, are you kidding, I look like an Armenian man!" she responds. It's smart and will make you think twice about swatting down that next shout-out about your shoes. 

2. Put down the lady mag. We know all of those damn pictures are touched up and Photoshopped to death, but why do we still insist on comparing ourselves to the impossible standards in women's magazines? In recent weeks, even Oprah's O magazine ran the article "Can I pull off a crop top?" In response, millions of women took to social media to rock their crop tops no matter their size. Take a cue from these ladies, and just put an end to the media madness and go read a book instead.  

3. Work out for the right reasons. Exercise because you LOVE your body and you want to take care of it and make it stronger, not because you hate the way you look now. Repeat something simple like "I love my strong body" while you're working out. And please resist the urge to compare yourself to the beautiful lady with the rock-hard abs on the elliptical next to you. It's stupid and a big waste of time that’s making you ill.  

4. Pick the right friends. Surround yourself with people who think you are far more valuable than the sum of your lady bits. Women who body-shame probably have friends who spend a lot of time obsessing about how they look. Find meaningful connections with women who inspire you to think about things outside of your muffin top. It's not only important for your health, you'll have a lot more fun.  

5. Challenge yourself! If you're feeling down on your body, try taking on some sort of physical challenge. Try walking a 5K or flying on a trapeze or learning to cha-cha. Reminding yourself of all the amazing things your body can do is a sure way to help take the focus off whether it looks like Gigi Hadid's.


Becky Bracken is a news and views writer who serves it up with a sassy side of girl power. If you don't have anything nice to say, you should probably sit next to her. Get more at NerdieGaga.com. 


Image via UygarGeographic/iStock

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