Body positivity movement does not glorify unhealthiness

Creative Commons Photo Courtesy of Key Notez

The “aerie real” campaign emphasizes body positivity.

Tess Rempel

The campaign for body positivity is everywhere and leaders of the body positivity movement promote the idea that sizes, shapes and skin tones don’t define beauty.

According to the American Psychological Association, 84 percent of American women and 43 percent of American men are unhappy with their bodies. This unhappiness, coupled with stereotypes of beauty, sparked the body positivity movement.

The intention of body positivity is to spread self-love by helping people embrace their bodies, regardless of differences due to age, circumstance, access to healthcare or genetics.  Advertisements, such as unedited photos and campaigns to overcome body image issues and insecurities from companies, have been promoted by Aerie and Dove in order to align with society’s push for diversity and inclusivity, and the movement’s message.

This message, according to Newsweek, significantly improves self-image in men and women and decreases comparisons between different body types.

Although body positivity spreads the message of detachment of worth from physical appearance, physical health cannot be detached from weight. Self love and body acceptance can be promoted while still recognizing the harmful effects of unhealthy lifestyles. Body positivity means inspiring people to take care of their health from a place of love and acceptance, not forcing them to not take care of it at all.

Consumers need to recognize that just by normalizing plus-size models, society is not glorifying or promoting unhealthy habits. As long as we understand the importance of a healthy lifestyle, plus-size models deserve to love themselves just as much as other thinner models who fit society’s narrative of a beautiful person.

So, join the rebellion and love yourself. Advocate for inner beauty and inspire others to do the same, and realize that self acceptance and a healthy lifestyle are two ideas that can peacefully coexist.