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Experts answer key questions about body image!

 

Click on the images below to hear the experts give their views on body image. 

Sylvia Mac

 

'Every person is unique. We should all accept our bodies the way they look. Stop trying to compare yourself to other people or you’ll be doing that for the rest of your life.'

 

Sylvia Mac, a child burn survivor, is the founder of Love Disfigure after daring to bare her scares for the first time aged 48.

 

Love Disfigure is a campaign led by Sylvia in a bid to raise awareness and support those living with disfigurement and body image problems.

 

After being severely burnt as a child, much of Sylvia’s life has been spent trying to conceal her scars as she never believed she was beautiful. Now she looks back and realises she spent many years struggling with Anxiety, Depression and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

 

Sylvia wants people to feel happy and fulfilled in their own skin, no matter what.

 

She says: ‘If a young person is looking in the mirror and they don’t like what they see I would say to them: you’re unique, you’re beautiful, don’t think that the perfect body image can be found online – because it can’t.'

 

 

Dr Victoria Mountford

 

Dr Victoria Mountford is a principle clinical psychologist at the NHS Eating Disorders Service and also is a member of the British Psychological Society.

 

Dr Mountford is also an accredited practitioner, supervisor and trainer with the British Association of Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapy, and a member of the Academy for Eating Disorders.

 

She is also an honorary research associate at the Institute of Psychiatry, King’s College London. Her current research interests include treatment processes and outcomes for body image. 

 

She says: ‘I want young people to start respecting and valuing their bodies, they need to think about how they talk to their body and how they treat it and would they ever talk to a friend in the same way? We can be very harsh and critical towards ourselves.’

Carole Elliott

 

Carole Elliott is the Professor of Human Resource Development at the University of Roehampton.

 

Her projects include looking at ‘ESRC Gendered Media Mis(s)representations of women profesddionals and leaders’, ‘Women’s Leadership’ and ‘Feminist Challenges and Futures: Women, Diversity and Management Learning’.  

 

She is currently working to challenge stereotypes and the focus on appearance in media representation of female leaders. 

 

Carole Elliott says: ‘The media has the power to shape individuals’ realities and to influence people of all ages about who has status in society. There’s a phrase used by feminist activists that states: ‘If you can’t see it, you can’t be it’. I think this is a powerful phrase, especially when it comes to the images received by young women through traditional and social media. If you don’t regularly encounter images of women CEO's, then you informally learn that only men can be CEO's.’

Link to Event Link to Young People Link to Supporters Link to The Report

The Body Image Fix for girls is supported by The Tampon Tax Fund distributed by The Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport. DCMS helps to drive growth, enrich lives and promote Britain abroad.

 

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The Body Image Fix for boys is supported by Wellcome Trust. 'Wellcome exists to improve health for everyone by helping great ideas to thrive. We're a global charitable foundation, both politically and financially independent. We support scientists and researchers, take on big problems, fuel imaginations and spark debate.

 

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