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15 Ways to Create a Body Positive World (on TV)

Good writers entertain … great writers entertain and educate. And, the shows can have a truly monumental effect by incorporating healthy body image into their scripts. By the time the average high school student graduates, s/he has watched about 20,000 hours of television.

You can help to create a body positive world (on tv) by portraying characters who:

  1. Encourage positive comments and try to avoid negative comments, about their own and other people's bodies.
  2. Participate in physical activities that make them feel good about themselves (without making other characters feel bad about their bodies).
  3. Try not to make judgmental comments about food, calories, dieting, and weight.
  4. Learn the facts and challenge the myths on size and bodies.
  5. Compliment people more often on their ideas, personality and accomplishments than on their appearance and physical being.
  6. Try to think of bodies as whole, functional units, rather than breaking them down into parts. Instead of saying, "I'm unhappy with my thighs," have characters say, "I'm pleased that my body is capable of doing this activity well."
  7. Don't participate in, encourage, or laugh at jokes that make fun of a person's size or body.
  8. Accept all types of bodies as beautiful and challenge limiting societal standard of beauty.
  9. Learn about eating disorders and seek help when they suspect that they (or a friend) have a problem.
  10. Wear the clothes that they like and feel comfortable in, rather than what they think makes them look "too fat" or "too thin."
  11. Try to eat when they are hungry, enjoy their food, and take pleasure in the process of eating, without guilt or stress over what they are eating.
  12. Object to gender-based assumptions on how bodies should look, such as "women should be thin" or "men should be muscular."
  13. Support organizations and activists who work for positive body image and ending "sizism."
  14. Teach kids at a young age that they are beautiful just as they are!
  15. Understand that size and body oppression relates to other forms of oppression, such as sexism, racism, and homophobia and then challenge all types of oppression.

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