Posts Tagged ‘Body Image’

7 Ways to Feel Better Naked

August 9, 2015

7 Ways To Feel Better Naked and Feel More Comfortable With Your Body in Bed,
Because Life’s Too Short To Be Insecure
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We’re always hearing that we could be having better sex, a better orgasm, or a better relationship. But how often do we actually  hear the nitty-gritty details of how we might actually achieve those things? Bustle has enlisted Vanessa Marin, a licensed sex psychotherapist based in San Francisco, to help us out with the specifics. This week’s topic: How to feel better naked in bed.

Is there a certain beauty routine or ritual that you genuinely love doing? Not because you feel like you’re “supposed” to do it, but because it’s authentically fun for you? For example, do you love brushing out and styling your hair? Applying the perfect cat eye? Rubbing your favorite lotion all over your body? The key word here is “authentic.” There’s a big difference between, “I’ve got to put on make-up because I look disgusting otherwise” and “I feel so hot when I’m wearing my favorite shade of red lipstick.” If you’re able to enjoy the process of getting yourself ready for the big reveal, you’ll feel way more confident.

Take Care of Your Body

Q: I’ve been dating someone new. Thus far we’ve only made out, but it seems like things are starting to heat up. Any tips for that awkward first time taking your clothes off around someone new? I wouldn’t go so far as to say I hate my body, but there are definitely areas that I strongly dislike.

A: The situation you find yourself in right now is one with which most people can relate. It’s such a bummer that the excitement of being with someone new for the first time has to be marred by self-consciousness about your own body!

It’s not that I blame you though. The physical ideals that women are expected to live up to are insane, and it’s hard not to pick yourself to pieces. I don’t think it’s possible to get rid of body consciousness entirely, but I do have some ideas for minimizing its impact in the moment.

Feel Sexy Getting Ready

When you grow up in our society, it’s hard to remember that you don’t need to have the body type of Beyonce to be attractive. Like I said before, I don’t think you can completely eliminate body consciousness, but you can develop a healthier relationship with your body.

Try to find ways to take care of your body and send it the message that it deserves love and pampering. Maybe that’s getting massages, manicures, or facials. I also recommend moving your body in ways you actually enjoy. The point is not to lose weight, but to help you feel more comfortable with and present in your own skin. That might be dancing, yoga, running, weight lifting, or swimming.

Set the Scene

If you can, invite your partner over to your place. Being in the comfort of your own space can help alleviate some of your anxiety.

You can also set things up to help you get in the mood. One of the best investments you can make is a cheap dimmer switch and soft light bulbs, which are much more flattering than your typical harsh overhead lighting. Or you can buy a small bedside lamp or candles. Don’t forget to put on music that makes you feel confident and sexy.

Consider Investing in Good Lingerie

Good lingerie is an extremely underrated self-esteem booster. You want to feel excited about your partner seeing what you have on under your clothes!

The important thing is to find lingerie that shows off your best assets and captures your style. Most women think only of Victoria’s Secret when they think of lingerie, which is a shame because VS is definitely not everyone’s cup of tea. There are so many more interesting style options out there these days — burlesque-inspired, minimalist, high-fashion, or tomboy.

Check out indie designers For Love And Lemons and Negative Underwear. Etsy is also a surprisingly good resource for creative and unusual lingerie. You can look for body-positive lingerie stores, like Dollhouse Bettie in San Francisco. They can also help you find the proper fit, and suggest cuts that flatter your body. If you’re not sure what kind of style you’re into, check out True and Co, which allows you to try on bras and chemises in the privacy of your own home.

Don’t Put Yourself Down

A lot of women feel so self conscious that criticize or make excuses for their bodies before even taking their clothes off. Please don’t do this! Don’t beat yourself up in front of your partners. Don’t point out your flaws. Don’t make self-deprecating “jokes” about your body. It’s unnecessary, it’s cruel, and it draws attention to things your partner probably wouldn’t have noticed on his or her own!

Remind Yourself What’s Important

If you catch yourself thinking critical thoughts in the moment, remind yourself what’s really important to you about being intimate with another person. To yourself, you could say something like, “I want to focus on being present with my partner instead of stuck in my own head” or “instead of criticizing myself, I’d rather pay attention to how good this feels.”

Know That You’re Your Own Worst Enemy

We women can be so mean to ourselves, especially our bodies. I promise you that any sexual partners you may have will never be as critical of your body as you are. With each item of clothing you remove, your partner is far more likely to be thinking, “hell yeah!” than, “hmm, her upper arms look a little jiggly to me.”

I hope these suggestions lessen your anxiety and help you actually enjoy this experience. Don’t forget to have fun!

Article sourced from: http://www.bustle.com/articles/58719-7-ways-to-feel-better-naked-and-feel-more-comfortable-with-your-body-in-bed-because?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=partnerships&utm_campaign=greatist

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Coffs Coast Health Club eNews – July 2015

July 2, 2015

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Christmas in July!!
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Come down to the main street of Sawtell and help us celebrate ‘Christmas in July’ at Split Cafe & Espresso Bar!
The awesome team at Split will be putting on a great cocktail menu for us & allowing everyone to BYO alcohol for the night. Juice, soft drinks, tea & coffee will be available for purchase from the cafe.  There will be an amazing strawberry laden Wicked Berries cake for dessert!
Where: Split Cafe & Espresso Bar, First Avenue, Sawtell

When: Friday 17th July from 6pm

Cost: $25 p/head

How: Book now at reception, via info@coffscoasthc.com.au or by calling 6658 6222 

The party is limited to the first 80 people to register & pay for their ticket, so get in quick!!!
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When Life Gets Tough Put On Your Boxing Gloves!
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Have you ever tried a PUNCH class?  PUNCH is your ultimate fitness based boxing class that incorporates upper body strength and endurance. It is a great way to let go of some negative energy while working on a fitter, stronger, leaner and healthier you.
PUNCH is on our timetable:
Mondays at 9.30am, Tuesdays at 5.30pm, Wednesdays at 6.00am, Thursdays at 5.30pm and Fridays at 9.30am
All classes are run by a personal trainer who can coach you, help you with your technique and push you to your limits.
You don’t need to bring a partner and boxing gloves and focus pads are supplied. So really there are no excuses…give a PUNCH class a try this week.
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Coffs Coast Health Club CENEX logo gray 2BUSINESS DIPLOMA NOW AVAILABLE on the Coffs Coast!
Gain a professional edge in Business, Management, Project Management, Human Resources, Workforce Planning and Marketing by developing your skills and knowledge to explore various roles across a variety of industries, and more with a BSB50207 Diploma of Business.  Business managers assist companies in reaching goals and objectives related to sales, productivity, profitability and industry penetration.  The Diploma of Business is designed by leaders in the business industry and is based on REAL life experience to make you the best business manager you can be. It provides you with a step-by-step business plan and shares the secrets of successful business leaders.
This qualification has been specifically designed by leaders in the business industry and is based on REAL life experience rather than on textbooks.
The course will arm you with the necessary skills you need whilst still allowing you the flexibility to tailor your course to suit your schedule. You can juggle your studies with work or other commitments, enabling you to have the best of both worlds and learn face to face, not just online only.
NEXT COURSE STARTS 21st September & runs until 11th December.
Mondays:         5pm – 9pm
Wednesdays:    5pm – 9pm
Fridays:            5pm – 9pm
Our Diploma of Business is VET FEE-HELP approved, so you can start studying towards your dream job today – with no time lost!
Contact Christian directly on 0412 778 736 for further information regarding the course and qualification.
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Short Term Workout Options for Friends & Family!
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Do you have friends or family that are in town during the school holidays? Would you like to save them some money & get them working out with you?
Well due to popular demand we are now offering some short term workout options for them…
Single Visit – adult only $15, student or baby boomer only $10, incl access during all supervised hours
Week Pass – adult only $29, student or baby boomer only $19, incl access during all supervised hours
Simply see reception or call 6658 6222 to take advantage of these offers for a limited time.
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Sugar Busters Program – Are Hidden Sugars Stopping Your Weight Loss?

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You’ve probably seen our Sugar Busters Board at Reception showing you how much sugar is in common foods and drinks.  Its been the topic of much discussion and also been quite a shock to some people how much sugar they are consuming and how much sugar can be that hidden culprit in weight gain.
The Healthy Inspirations team can now offer you a 4 week Sugar Busters program for $149 ($89  if you are already a health club member!) This includes 4 weeks access to all health club facilities, weekly 1:1 Sugar Buster Coaching Sessions, weekly Sugar Buster Phone Consults and your Sugar Buster Resource Kit!
Speak to Simone, Leslie or Jenny from the Healthy Inspirations Team or call them on 6658 6222 to get started.
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Coffs Coast Health Club, very own Dance for Cancer 2015 participant – Jacqui Barnett!
JacquiJarrattProfile1This fundraising event, which will be held on Saturday 14th November, has been running for 6 years on the Coffs Coast and although it has gone through a couple of name changes it is a fantastic night of entertainment with each participant strutting their stuff on the dance floor to compete in 3 categories with all proceeds going to the Cancer Council.  Leading up to the event Jacqui will be running 2 fundraising events so save Friday August 28th for a Fun and Fabulous Trivia Night with a Twist and Friday October 30th for a Halloween Cocktail party.  More details on the way.  Donations can be made initially straight in to the Cancer Council charity box at reception!
Here’s the link to the Facebook page
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Stars-of-Coffs-Coast-Dance-for-Cancer/1584019218507518?notif_t=fbpage_fan_invite jump on, like, comment and share!
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Be Rewarded For Your Hard Work In Julyimage001

Reward yourself this month at Coffs Coast Health Club. Not only do we provide the latest fitness & strength equipment as well as a huge range of cutting edge classes from the low intensity Seniors & Baby Boomer classes, through fun dance classes like Zumba, to high intensity Boxing, Circuit, Pump & Cycling classes but we would like to reward you for all your hard work.
For the month of July, Coffs Coast Health Club is offering a chance to win a FREE 60 Minute Massage each week with our Fabulous Masseuses for the Fitness Passport Member who visits the most in a week.
To win is simple, take time out of your busy day and treat yourself physically, emotional and spiritually with as many workouts as you can!
A winner will be draw at the end of each week in July, the more you train the more chance to win!

If you would like to know more call us on 6658 6222 or email us at info@coffscoasthc.com.au
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Climb 4 The Chopper!mount-kilimanjaro-np

Have you ever wanted to achieve a goal so big you can’t see it from the bottom, yet you know in 7 days you will have reached the summit?

Picture this. You are 5895 metres high, on the roof of Africa, just about to take your final steps on to the summit of the Dark Continent’s highest mountain; the beautiful and majestic Mt Kilimanjaro. As you reach the summit, the memories, the struggles and tribulations of the past seven days of adventure come flooding back and culminate into one euphoric emotion. At that moment, the feeling of achievement and success in reaching your goal is almost overwhelming…… YOU FEEL ALIVE!!

Peak Potential Adventures in support of Westpac Life Saver Rescue Helicopter give you this opportunity to climb to the summit of the world’s highest free standing mountain from the 4th to the 13th of December!

Feel like this is something you want to be involved with? Contact Russ Holland on 0407 524 752 ASAP to secure your place for the adventure of a lifetime!

As an incentive, Coffs Coast Health Club are offering a FREE Mountain Fit program to help you climb the mountain of success!
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Welcome DanIMG_3683

Dan has recently come on board with us as a Personal Trainer. He is keen to help steer you in the right direction of health and fitness.

Dan has great sporting back ground, playing with the Coffs Harbour Comets Rugby League club and now being back on board with them as their Trainer, helping steer them towards another victory.

Dan has recently returned from the Baltimore in the US where he completed an internship at the headquarters of Under Armour. There he learnt how to train everyone from NFL players to the normal person wanting to get fitter and lose weight. Dan now has another way of making you head to your goals and have fun doing it.

If you see Dan on the floor, have a chat with him and introduce yourself and make him feel welcomed to the Coffs Coast Health Club Team.
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Clearance Sale Now Onimages

The weather has already cooled down so now is the time to update your NEW wardrobe.
We have stock that we need to move to make way for new exciting merchandise coming soon! We need your help to make this happen, and you save money! We think its a win win!

SALE Starts:       Wednesday 1st of July
SALE Finishes:   Friday 31st of July
SAVE 20% off the entire Coffs Coast Health Club Clothing Range!
Remember the best things go first, so hurry in.
See your friendly Reception team to find out more. Hurry while stocks last!
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Flash Sales for the Month of Julyimages (1)

At Coffs Coast Health Club all Supplements are on sale in July!
We are the exclusive stockist of all Nano products on the Mid North Coast
We will be heavily discounting stock at different times throughout the whole month of JULY!

Prices NEVER seen at Coffs Coast Health Club!
All supplements can be taste tested throughout the month
Ask your trainer which supplement will help you reach your goal faster.

Thinking of trying something new? Ask us how we can help you TODAY!
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“Clear your Head, Make a Difference” ~ Why Not Go Dry in July?  Im-Dry-this-July

Dry July is a fundraiser that challenges you to go booze-free for a month to support adults living with cancer.  It helps you get healthy and clear your head while also raising funds for an important cause.

Dry July takes a lighter-hearted approach to raising funds for a serious issue.  You don’t often get the chance to raise money for charity by not doing something! It is a challenge of determination that rewards participants with a great sense of achievement and feeling of wellbeing.

Taking part in Dry July gives you the chance to also focus on yourself – notice your own drinking habits and the value of a healthy, balanced lifestyle. Dry Julyers recognise a multitude of benefits themselves such as increased energy levels, a clearer head and clearer skin!

Dry Julyers are supported by an online community of other participants, ambassadors and partners providing advice, help and encouragement throughout the challenge.

Check out the Wellbeing Website if you plan on kick starting some healthy lifestyle changes with Dry July http://wellbeing.dryjuly.com

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Healthy Inpirations Recipe of the Week – Pecan Crusted Pork Steaks

October 30, 2014

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAPecan Crusted Pork Steaks – Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 2 Tbsp ground flaxseeds
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp soy-sauce
  • ½ cup ground pecans
  • 4 pork porterhouse steaks
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil

 Method

  1. Combine the flaxseeds, salt and paprika on a plate. In a wide, shallow bowl, whisk the egg and soy sauce. Place the pecans on a plate.
  2. Dip each steak into the flaxseed mixture, then the egg mixture, and then into the pecans to coat.
  3. Heat a large skillet or frypan over moderate heat and add the oil. Cook the steaks for 4 minutes, turn and cook a further 4 minutes.
  4. Serve with steamed greens.

Reflexology … what’s it all about?

August 5, 2014

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Reflexology is massage of the feet or hands that aims to promote healing in other areas of the body. Modern reflexology is based on the principle that the foot has ‘reflex’ points that correspond to the various structures and organs throughout the body. For example, on the left foot, the tip of the big toe corresponds to the brain’s left hemisphere.

Many ancient cultures, including the Egyptians and Chinese, practised foot therapy as a form of healing. In the early 20th century, the Americans Dr William Fitzgerald and physiotherapist Eunice Ingham rediscovered and refined the techniques.

Reflex points

According to the philosophy of reflexology, all the organs, glands and parts of the body have representing reflexes on the feet. Any health problem in the body can usually be detected in the corresponding area of the foot. The left foot generally relates to any organs, glands etc on the left side of the body while the right foot relates to any organs, glands etc on the right side

Practitioners believe that by massaging or stimulating the reflexes using specific techniques there will be a direct effect on the corresponding organ.

A reflexologist may interpret foot marks or problems such as corns and calluses as an indication of a possible health imbalance in the corresponding area of the body.

A range of disorders

Supporters of reflexology believe that it can effectively treat a wide range of disorders including:

  • Stress
  • Circulation problems
  • Impaired immunity
  • Digestive disorders
  • Hormonal imbalances
  • Reproductive problems
  • Sleep problems
  • Lack of energy
  • Oedema (swelling)
  • Common childhood complaints such as colic, teething pain and bed-wetting
  • Emotional problems.

The procedure

A typical session lasts approximately one hour. The practitioner first asks detailed questions about lifestyle and prior and current medical problems. The patient sits or reclines on a couch with their feet bare, while the practitioner examines the feet before working on all the areas of the feet.

Generally speaking, the greater the degree of tenderness felt by the patient, the more likelihood there will be a possible imbalance in the corresponding area of the body. The practitioner relaxes the feet with gentle massage, and then works on the reflex points using specific techniques. Practitioners are well used to handling feet and apply sufficient pressure so that ticklishness should not be a problem! Reflexology is not meant to hurt, but should be felt. Strong pressure does not necessarily have a greater effect on the reflexes.

Medical evidence is still limited

Foot massage, including reflexology, encourages relaxation and improves circulation in the feet. However, clinical trials on the efficacy of reflexology as treatment for other health problems have produced mixed results. For example:

  • Premenstrual symptoms – in one study to assess reflexology as treatment for premenstrual symptoms, participants who received weekly therapy reported, on average, a reduction of symptoms by 62 per cent.
  • In another study, the benefits of reflexology were no different to the benefits of regular foot massage performed by people with no training in reflexology.

For further information regarding clinical trials and the efficiency of reflexology go to www.reflexology–research.com

General cautions

Treatment for foot problems such as corns, calluses, bunions and ingrown toenails are not in the scope of practise of a Reflexologist and should be treated by a podiatrist. In particular, people with diabetes are prone to serious foot problems and should be guided by their doctor about appropriate treatment. Reflexology can be an excellent therapy for people with diabetes, however if in doubt about your medical condition it is always recommended that you consult with your doctor before seeing a reflexologist.

Reflexologists do not diagnose, prescribe or treat specific conditions. If an imbalance was detected in a particular reflex during a treatment, the practitioner is likely to refer you to a doctor to get checked. Do not stop any medical treatments on the advice of your reflexologist.

Choosing a reflexologist

To find a reputable and qualified reflexologist in your area, contact the Reflexology Association of Australia. All professional practitioners have undergone extensive training, hold a current Level 2 first aid certificate, have professional indemnity insurance and can provide you with a professional receipt that you can use to claim back part of the treatment from participating private health insurance companies.

Where to get help

  • Your doctor
  • Reflexologist
  • Podiatrist
  • Reflexology Association of Australia Tel. 0500 502 250
  • Australian Podiatry Association (Vic) Tel. (03) 9866 5906

Things to remember

  • Reflexology is massage of the feet that aims to promote healing in other areas of the body.
  • Modern reflexology is based on the principle that the foot has ‘reflex’ points that correspond to the various structures and organs throughout the body.
  • Always consult your doctor if you have a medical condition.

Article sourced from: http://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/bhcv2/bhcarticles.nsf/pages/Reflexology

Hey Guys … What your Erection Says About Your Health

May 4, 2014

erectile_dysfunction

Almost 400 years ago, English physician Thomas Sydenham wrote that “a man is as old as his arteries.” I can relate. As a cardiologist, my practice is dedicated to helping arteries stay young. In this effort, I ask every one of my male patients about his ability to develop and maintain an erection. Although the usual response is “strong like bull,” many men do have serious problems.

Recent data indicate that identifying a man with diabetes who is unable to have a satisfactory erection predicts the presence of diseased arteries and future heart events several years before a heart attack or heart death — more than asking about smoking, blood pressure, or even a family history of early heart disease.

This allows time to identify, treat, and reverse arterial damage. So do yourself or your man a favor, share this information in a supportive way, teach more people about “survival of the firmest” as it’s been called by Dr. Michael Greger, and enjoy a lifestyle that promotes arterial health, head-to-toe but emphasizing the joy of the groin.

1. Why the connection between healthy arteries and satisfactory erections?

The inner lining of every artery, including the penile arteries, is a single layer of cells called the endothelium. An appreciation of the endothelium won three researchers the Nobel Prize in Medicine in 1999. They figured out that when this wallpaper-like lining was healthy, it produced the gas nitric oxide (NO), which resists plaque, clotting, or constriction of arteries.

A good endothelium leads to good sustained erections, just as it leads to good heart artery flow. Endothelial dysfunction (ED) leads to a poor blood flow response throughout the body and poor maintenance of the swollen penis needed to create and sustain an erection.

2. What harms the endothelium?

I know I sound like a broken record about eating properly, but lifestyle factors are known to harm the endothelium and its production of nitric oxide. Lifestyles leading to hypertension, diabetes, elevated lipids and obesity produce erectile and endothelial dysfunction.

The standard American diet (high in processed foods packed with chemicals, fat, sugar and salt), combined with a sedentary lifestyle, poorly managed stress, environmental toxins like BPA, and poor sleep are among the factors that produce ED. Diets emphasizing plant-powered rainbow diets, low in trans- and saturated fats and rich in minerals, vitamins, phytonutrients promote arterial health and erectile success.

3. How powerful a heart predictor is erectile dysfunction?

ED is an amazing predictor of future coronary artery disease events. For example, if you live in Olmsted County, Minnesota, near the Mayo clinic, and are a man between the ages of 40 and 49 without known heart disease but with ED, you have up to a 50-fold higher incidence of eventually having new heart events compared to men the same age without ED. Rarely in medicine is there ever a risk factor this powerful. (To compare: smoking, for example, may raise the risk of similar events 3-fold.)

4. What do you do if you have erectile dysfunction?

My advice is to see a physician, perhaps a cardiologist, interested in advanced detection and prevention of arteries. In my office, patients with ED and no known heart issues are going to receive instructions to address their diet, exercise, and stress management, guiding them to an artery healthy lifestyle that promotes a strong heart and a strong erection. The “numbers” that matter will be measured like blood pressure, weight, waist circumference, blood sugar, cholesterol and LDL particle number, hs-CRP, homocysteine and lpA. An EKG will be performed.

Generally, I recommend patients have a coronary artery calcium CT scan at a local hospital that generally costs under $200. There is now a way to directly measure the health of the endothelium and in my office I perform this non-invasive examination on men with ED.

A trick used by miners to avoid being exposed to and dying from elevated levels of toxic gases was to bring a caged canary into the coal mine. If the canary acted strange or died, the miners knew to exit the mine immediately before they were at risk for death. Erectile dysfunction is often referred to as the canary in the coal mine. The erection that doesn’t happen or cannot be sustained can give clues to poor lifestyles and sick arteries 3 to 4 years before the chest pain strikes. If you’re a man with erectile dysfunction, get a complete check-up.

If you know a man with this problem, share this article and gently but firmly (remember: survival of the firmest) guide him to getting checked. You might save a life and restore sexual performance and joy.

 

Article sourced from http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-13561/survival-of-the-firmest-what-your-erection-says-about-your-health.html

Male and Body Image Issues

July 9, 2013

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Body image is how you perceive, think and feel about your body. Men can have a poor body image. Poor body image may contribute to eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa, bulimia or binge eating in men.

Your body image is what you think you look like. This may have little to do with your actual appearance. Around one in four Australian men in the healthy weight range believe themselves to be fat, while 17 per cent of men are on a weight loss diet at any given time. Men also worry about being muscular. A desire to fit the ideal masculine image of lean muscularity means that over-exercising and the use of dangerous and illegal drugs (like steroids) are on the rise.

It’s estimated that about 45 per cent of Western men are unhappy with their bodies to some degree, compared with only 15 per cent some 25 years ago. Gay men, models, dancers and athletes are particularly vulnerable to poor body image or feeling insecure about their bodies. This is because they are more likely to be judged (or believe they will be judged) according to their appearance.

Body image and self-destructive behaviours

A negative body image encourages a range of self-destructive behaviours, including:

  • Fad dieting – around 17 per cent of men are dieting at any given time. Those diets are not always nutritionally sound.
  • Eating disorders – one in 10 people with anorexia nervosa is now male, while 4 per cent of men are purging (vomiting or exercising compulsively, also known as bulimia) and about 3 per cent of men have problems with binge eating.
  • Exercise dependence – around 20 per cent of regular exercisers (approximately five per cent of the population) are addicted to exercise, either psychologically or physically.
  • Steroid abuse – around three per cent of Australian teenage boys use muscle-enhancing drugs (like steroids).

Causes of negative body image

Some of the factors that contribute to a negative body image include:

  • Teasing in childhood and adolescence (for being too thin, too weak or too fat)
  • Peer pressure among teenage boys to be tough and strong
  • A cultural tendency to judge people on their appearance
  • The emphasis on male sports players as role models for boys
  • Advertising campaigns and media coverage featuring idealised male images
  • Promotion by society of the ideal man as always being strong, lean and muscular
  • Well-meaning public health campaigns that urge people to lose weight.

Body image problems in Australian men

Most experts believe the real figures on eating and exercise disorders among Australian men could be much higher. Men are less likely to seek medical help than women for any type of illness. Since worrying about weight and body shape has sometimes been seen as a ‘female’ problem, men are even less likely to ask for help, for fear of looking weak.

Improving body image

A negative body image develops over the course of your life, so changing it can take time and effort. Suggestions on improving your body image include:

  • Reflect on your experiences and try to identify the influences on your body image from childhood.
  • Try weighing yourself less often. Focus on health not weight.
  • Make a pact with yourself to treat your body with respect, which includes eating well and not embarking on punishing exercise routines, or taking drugs.
  • Try to strike a healthy balance between being concerned about how your body looks, rather than the way it functions.
  • Get informed by reading up on body image issues.
  • Develop reasons for exercising (such as stress release or improved concentration), rather than concentrating only on changing your body shape.

Help for body image issues

If you are feeling depressed about your body, or if you are developing destructive behaviours (like crash dieting, binge eating or compulsive exercising), then professional help is a good idea. There are counsellors and psychologists, trained in the areas of body image, who can help you change negative beliefs and behaviours.

Where to get help

  • Your doctor
  • Counsellor
  • Dietitians Association of Australia Tel. 1800 812 942
    Coffs Coast Health Club 6658 6222

Things to remember

  • Body image is the way you perceive, think and feel about your body.
  • Poor body image is a male problem too, with around half of all men feeling unhappy with their body shape or size.
  • Figures on male anorexia, bulimia and exercise dependence could be much higher than quoted, since men are traditionally reluctant to seek medical help

Article sourced from http://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/bhcv2/bhcarticles.nsf/pages/Body_image_issues_for_men

Turn Down Negative Self-Talk

April 21, 2013

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“I might as well face it, I’ll always be fat.” When Franco Beneduce hears a client say something like this, he knows he has his work cut out for him.

Beneduce is a certified life coach and group facilitator in San Francisco. As he coaches people on weight loss, body image, and successful life strategies, he sees how their self-talk — the conversations people have in their heads — either supports or undermines their progress toward their goals.

If you are a negative self-talker, you may not even be aware of it. Thinking the worst can be second nature after years of doing it. But it can be influencing how you live life and keeping you from getting the best out of it. Here’s how to cut back on negative self-talk.

It’s Not All in Your Head

Self-talk isn’t just mindless chatter. It has a way of creating its own reality. Telling yourself you can do something can help it happen. Telling yourself you can’t do something can make that come true. Tell yourself you’ll never lose weight and it can be like eating a whole bag of chips. Tell yourself it’s too hard to find another job and you’ll likely watch TV instead of updating your resume.

“Self-talk dictates how you relate to yourself and how you show up for other people,” says Beneduce. Let’s say you think you have nothing interesting to say. If you keep telling yourself that, other people are going to see you that way, too.

In fact, people who think negatively tend to be less outgoing and have weaker social networks than positive thinkers. Multiple studies link positive emotions with more satisfying relationships, more romance, and lower rates of divorce.

Avoid a Downward Spiral

Negative self-talk can be a runaway train. Your mind goes around in circles replaying a negative event or your own shortcomings. “People who ruminate dwell on negative feelings,” says Sonja Lyubomirsky, PhD, professor of psychology at the University of California in Riverside. You may think that you’re getting in touch with your true feelings, but bad feelings have a way of getting worse the more attention you give them.

The more you focus on negative events or shortcomings, the harder it is to put them behind you. Research shows that happy people do put bad days behind them. In a survey of 231 college students, those with a positive outlook were more likely to look back on negative events and report how much better things are for them now.

Talk Yourself Out of It

If negative self-talk came with an off switch, you could just flip it. But it doesn’t. It takes a plan and some work to tone it down. Here are four ways to make it happen:

  • Distance yourself. You can’t banish negative self-talk forever, but you can take a step back from it. When you notice negative self-talk occurring, Beneduce says address it like you would an opinionated third party. You might say, “Thanks for sharing,” or “It’s interesting you feel that way” and move on.
  • Distract yourself. “Over-thinking involves focusing on a train of thought that goes around and around,” Lyubomirsky says. “You can stop that train of thought by focusing on something else.” Try playing basketball, doing a crossword puzzle, or any other activity that fully engages your mind.
  • Call them on it. Give your negative thoughts the third-degree and they could crumble. You might ask yourself, “Is that really true?” or “Is there another way to look at this situation?” You may also look for benefits. If you missed that job promotion, are there any lessons for the future you can take from the situation? Or could another opportunity come out of it?
  • Save them for later. Set aside a time of day for negative self-talk. If you hear yourself doubting, blaming, or comparing yourself to others at another time of day, tell yourself you will come back to the conversation later. When the appointed time arrives, your negative thoughts may have lost most of their oomph.

Make It Positive

Beneduce admits he’s not immune to negative self-talk. When he works with large groups, he knows everyone will be watching him. If he’s on, the day will go well, but if he’s off, he flops. So going in, he tells himself, “I am confident. I have the skills I need. I am going to trust myself.” Sometimes he’ll write three words on a piece of paper to reinforce it. Throughout the day, he glances at them: “Fun. Smart. Effective.” And that is what he projects.

Article sourced from http://www.webmd.com/balance/express-yourself-13/negative-self-talk?page=2

Love your body, love yourself

June 3, 2012

I don’t feel bad about my body

by Jean Hannah Edelstein

"Not feeling bad about my body is something I’ve never articulated because feels like such a defiance of convention."
“Not feeling bad about my body is something I’ve never articulated because feels like such a defiance of convention.”

I don’t feel bad about my body, though heaven knows, I’ve tried.

I’ve found myself splitting a bottle of wine with friends who get on to the topic of how they’re trying to change or improve their figures; I’ve remained silent. I’ve pored over fashion spreads that purport to offer the right swimwear (or dress, or jeans) for my figure, provided I can categorise my figure by what is wrong with it, the way in which it is too much or too little; I’ve failed. I’ve pondered whether ill-fated romances fell apart because of something repellent about my physique; I’ve concluded that while there are many reasons someone might not want to date me, they’re all more compelling than my being too tall or too short or too hippy or too anything.

Not feeling bad about my body is something I’ve never articulated because feels like such a defiance of convention. An utter subversion, when in the cultural narratives most familiar to me are so often focused on the problems that women have with their bodies – and that the rest of the world has with women’s bodies. From the hundreds of daily articles in the tabloid press breaking them down into a collection of inadequate parts; to the products endlessly marketed to help us conceal and improve and reshape them; to the perfectly well-meaning people we all know, who greet a woman they haven’t seen in a while with, ‘Oh, you’ve lost weight!’ because they assume it must always feel like a compliment.

I don’t feel bad about my body not because it’s a particularly outstanding one. In fact, it’s fairly average, a sturdy UK size 12 topped with a kind of enormous head that I suppose should give me a complex. I don’t feel bad about my body because I made a conscious decision not to. In the late years of my teens, with friends and classmates in the evil clutches of eating disorders, I decided that this was one area of self-abuse in which I would no longer be a participant. I stopped weighing myself, because I knew that whatever the number on the scale, I would want it to be smaller. I stopped reading magazines that attempt to explain to me how to fix my body through fashion or exercise or diet. I did start doing more exercise, though – not to lose weight, but with the aim of feeling healthier and more at ease in the body that I had so that I would not be seduced by the prospect of longing for a different one.

And for the most part, it worked: I am these legs and arms and back and bum and spleen, and I remain determined not to feel bad about any bit of it, even in spite of the plenty of things about my body that people have now and then pointed out to me as things that are wrong, because that’s just something that people feel they can do to women. The university boyfriend who told me that at first he didn’t think I had a pretty face, but that over time it had ‘grown’ on him. The lingerie saleswoman who screamed: ‘this is so weird!’ at the sight of my breasts, exposed for a bra fitting, because one is ever so slightly larger than the other.  The gym instructor I shocked at my induction session when I declined her offer to weigh and measure me, because I wanted to use the gym to maintain my fitness level but not to attempt to fix things about my body that I hated (and also because I am not competing to be a prize farm animal).

Regarding our bodies as flawed things that need to be fixed is pretty much the reverse of the truth, isn’t it? They are the only things in life that we really can’t get rid of. Which makes them all, in their way, intrinsically flawless. Instead of despairing that we’re not good enough to fit into clothes or work as supermodels and blaming ourselves for these shortcomings, we should be blaming the dresses for being badly cut and the aspirations for being unrealistic. We can wear a different T-shirt. We can celebrate different kinds of beauty. But we can’t get a new body, not really, no matter what the plastic surgery ads tell us.

And that’s why I think it is time to admit that I don’t feel bad about my body. And I hope that more women will admit it, too – to encourage an interrogation of why we’re made to feel that we should consider ourselves flawed, rather than continuing to analyse how we can mitigate the so-called flaws. To stop assuming that as women, it is natural to consider our bodies to be flawed; that we need to be fixed. That anything can make our bodies perfect except loving them ourselves. Unless someone can recommend a bikini that will make my giant head look smaller. In which case, of course, I’ll take six.

Information sourced from: http://www.dailylife.com.au/life-and-love/real-life/i-dont-feel-bad-about-my-body-20120521-1z05i.html