Nowadays, there is such an influx of the media’s portrayal of the ‘perfect’ body that not even children are protected from it. Celebrities, toy companies and movies all display what they deem as being the ideal figure, and sadly it is easy for children to become sucked in.


Unfortunately, it is not just outsiders that influence how your child perceives their own body – you do too. While not intentionally, you can set your little one up to have negative views of themselves, but it can be prevented.


Here are four ways you can ensure your child has a positive body image.


Treat your own body well

Whether you realise it or not, your child is looking to you to see how they should react in certain situations and this includes how they look at their body. This makes it so important to not put yourself down or criticise aspects of your own body in front of them. If you learn to love you for you then your child will know that it is ok to love their own body.


Watch what you say

Always remember that what you say is being picked up by your son or daughter. Saying things like ‘I wish my legs were longer’ or ‘I'd love if my my stomach was flatter’ show your son or daughter that only a certain figure or shape is normal or acceptable. So, even if you are having a bad day, try to find something about your appearance that you love and say it out loud.


Don’t criticise others

It is so easy to let things like 'wow his beer belly is huge' or 'she has put on a lot of weight' slip out of the mouth, but it doesn’t make it right. It is vitally important you make a conscious effort to watch what you say and avoid commenting on other people’s appearance. If you continue to put others down, not only will your child believe it is acceptable to do so but they may become self-conscious about your opinion of their body. 


Look to health rather than weight

It is perfectly ok to want to lose a little weight, but it is how you approach and tackle the situation that really matters. Avoid telling kids you are going for a run to lose weight or to the gym to get a flatter stomach – try to keep it about health rather than weight. Instead say things like 'I want to keep my body fit and healthy so that I can run around after you' or 'I like going for runs because it makes me feel good'. 



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