In a world where societal expectations overpower personal beliefs, understanding the relationship between weight and self-esteem has been a sensitive discussion, changing how we accept ourselves and how we think others look at us.
The connection between one’s weight and, as a result, one’s overall self-esteem is more than just skin deep. In fact, perceptions of our weight can sometimes reach the core of our emotional and mental well-being.
This blog will explore the undermined link between weight and self-esteem, gathering insights from health experts.
The Perception Of Weight In The Society
Whether we like it or not, today’s culture places a significant emphasis on ideal body size, which often covers a standard for physical appearance and weight. Although it is difficult to understand why, weight is the ultimate marker of aesthetic scrutiny nowadays. This is partially why “weight loss” has been a concept of beauty rather than health and wellness in most cases.
From social media influencers, beauty pageants, and models to fitness experts and the glossy pages of magazines, the portrayal of “ideal size”, commonly known as “size zero”, has set a somewhat unrealistic beauty standard for many.
This changing landscape of self-worth based on the number on the scale is almost casting a shadow on one’s confidence and overall self-esteem.
Studies further validate this relationship, where self-esteem is positively associated with a healthy weight in young adults. In contrast, the self-esteem score was negatively associated with young adults having odds of an unhealthy weight (being overweight or obese).
The Feedback Loop
While it is pretty challenging to understand this relationship, weight and self-esteem work in a feedback loop, where negative comments and perceptions of one’s body can lead to unhealthy habits.
This can come primarily in the form of binge eating, social isolation, poor sleep, and an inactive lifestyle, all collectively contributing to weight gain or making it difficult to maintain a healthy weight. Social media and internet influences with jaw-dropping body transformation also have a noticeable role to play in this regard.
If prolonged, this feedback loop can further erode self-esteem, creating a cycle that is hard to break. Understanding the onset of this behavior and taking measures to settle it is crucial in ensuring the perception of weight doesn’t override the emotional connection of the body.
1. Nurture Positive Perception About Yourself
Always remember how you see yourself is how people see you. Embrace yourself and your body. This calls for a lot of self-reflection, acceptance, and self-love.
Rather than focusing on a bunch of numbers on the scale, think of weight as a health concept. Understand the value of overall holistic and mental well-being. This can include acknowledging personal achievements, reaching milestones, and cultivating meaningful bonds.
2. Be Around Supportive-Positive People
Surround yourself with the right people and communities. It goes a long way in reshaping how you look at weight and yourself.
Sharing mutual experiences, challenges, and successful transformation can break the feeling of loneliness. It can set you free from unrealistic beauty standards and make you feel better knowing there are people just like you navigating these sensitive topics.
As a quote best explains this, “You become what you surround yourself with”. So, be around people who can bring positivity, love, and compassion to any discussion.
3. Make The Right Choices
Lastly, make better choices. If your weight or how you look bothers you so much that you cannot look ahead, do something about it. It’s important to understand that being overweight and underweight goes beyond just aesthetic concerns; and they can be critical factors that trigger certain health conditions.
Start by consulting a weight loss expert for a customised plan. Talk about your expectations and explore the choices you have. Thankfully, with the advancement of technology, there are many effective weight loss surgery options you can choose from. The pathways to losing weight are higher now than ever, from bariatric surgeries and revisional surgeries to weight loss tablets and injections.
Once you reach your ideal weight, adopt a healthy lifestyle to maintain it. Exercising, following a balanced-clean diet, and getting enough sleep can help with weight management, increasing energy levels, improving one’s mood, and, most importantly, enhancing self-esteem.
Contact Dr. Samir if you have any questions
02 Jumeirah Beach Rd - opposite Burj Al Arab - Umm Suqeim - Jumeirah 3 - Dubai
9am-9pm (Saturday- Thursday)