Your Bod

Everything you need to know about body neutrality

Body neutrality is the internet's new approach to wellness. It's based on the idea of viewing your body as something that isn't positive or negative. The mindset is all about gratitude for all that your body does for you—rather than how it looks.

According to Wendy Childs Faracchio, a registered dietitian, "It’s appreciation for your body and its capabilities, without the pressure that positivity or negativity often brings. It’s acknowledging that you are more than what you look like." 

But what is all the hype about? And how do you even try being body neutral? No worries, we've got all the answers! 

How is body neutrality different than body positivity?

They may seem similar, but body positivity and body neutrality are totally different concepts. Body positivity, while amazing, is all about loving how your bod *looks* as it is. It is about learning to accept how your body looks rather than wanting to change it.

But body neutrality separates how your body looks from how it functions. If you are body neutral, you do not value your self-worth in your body's appearance. 

"Body positivity is geared toward self-love and praise toward your body—and thinking it’s beautiful regardless of its size or ability," Childs Faracchio says. "Body neutrality is not necessarily thinking it’s beautiful, but not necessarily thinking it’s not, either. Simply put, the emphasis isn’t on the body in a body neutral mindset."

Why are people loving being body neutral?
People all over the world are loving body neutrality because it's freeing! Being body neutral means letting yourself go from your own judgments. You don't have to love your body all the time, but being body neutral helps you learn to respect how it helps you do what you love.

Childs Faracchio explains that being body neutral is extremely helpful for teens, "especially today where everyone basically lives on social media."

She adds, "Sometimes the body positivity mindset can be overwhelming, especially if you are not feeling particularly positive about yourself on a given day—and a neutral mindset keeps you from getting caught up in that."

Should I try out body neutrality?
YES! Body neutrality is a wonderful way to navigate the ever-changing wellness world. It won't always be easy to be body neutral, but there are tons of ways to remind yourself of your goals.

Childs Faracchio advises that you can try out being body neutral by "focusing on where you are right now and challenging any negative thoughts you may have about your body." She recommends wearing clothes that fit you comfortably and represent your style and personality. "Focus on things your body does for you every day instead of how it looks. Show yourself respect and don’t compare yourself to others."

Try positive affirmations, meditation and connecting with nature! Most importantly, remember to stay connected to your body and love it for all that it does for you.

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Graphics by Laine Napoli

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by Laine Napoli | 8/25/2022