What Is Body Neutrality?
Body neutrality is an approach to body acceptance that encourages us to focus on our health rather than our appearance. It enables us to break free from the traditional beauty standards that society has imposed upon us and helps us learn to appreciate and love our bodies for what they can do.
It is a concept that focuses on accepting and respecting our bodies as they are, without placing value or judgment on our appearance. The mindset encourages us to view our bodies as a vessel for our experiences, abilities, and strengths, rather than solely evaluating or critiquing them as objects.
Body neutrality differs from body positivity in that it does not necessarily require us to love or celebrate our bodies at all times. For some, body positivity can feel false because loving our appearance every day isn’t as simple as it sounds.
The body-positive movement promotes self-love and acceptance. Body neutrality, on the other hand, aims to shift the focus away from our bodies altogether and toward the things that truly matter, such as our achievements, relationships, and personal growth. Being body neutral means being okay with having any feelings about our bodies, as long as we can also uncover the good aspects, too.
Learning how to become body neutral is, however, easier said than done. If you want to deepen your understanding of this idea and gain insight into how to cultivate self-acceptance, you need to add these five books about body neutrality to your reading list.
Body Neutrality Reading List
1. “Body Neutral” By Jessi Kneeland
“Body Neutral” by Jessi Kneeland is a must-read book that dives deep into the concept of body neutrality. It serves as a great jumping-off point to understanding this concept. Kneeland offers valuable insights and practical advice on how to cultivate a more positive relationship with your body. Through personal stories and thought-provoking exercises, Kneeland encourages readers to embrace body neutrality, focusing on self-acceptance and appreciation rather than constant scrutiny and body shame.
2. “More Than Enough” By Elaine Welteroth
In “More Than Enough,” Elaine Welteroth shares her personal journey towards embracing body neutrality. This memoir is a powerful exploration of society’s beauty standards and the pressure to conform. Welteroth candidly discusses her body image issues and how she learned to find value beyond her appearance. Her story, with raw honesty and relatable anecdotes, serves as an inspiration for readers seeking to cultivate a more accepting relationship with their bodies.
3. “You Are Not a Before Picture” By Alex Light
In a culture obsessed with the before picture, Alex Light challenges this notion of comparing ourselves to idealized images in her book “You Are Not a Before Picture.” Light shares her personal journey of self-acceptance and offers practical advice on how to navigate diet culture and unrealistic beauty standards. This book is a powerful reminder that we are more than our physical appearance and deserve to have a healthy body image.
4. I Am More Than My Body By Bethany C. Meyers
In her book “I Am More Than My Body,” Bethany C. Meyers discusses the concept of body neutrality and the importance of embracing it. As the founder of the be.come project, a platform for body-neutral workouts, she shares her own personal journey to body neutrality and how it has positively impacted her life. Through the book, she offers practical tips and insights on how readers can also cultivate a body-neutral mindset.
5. Embody By Connie Sobczak
“Embody” by Connie Sobczak is a powerful book that explores the concept of body neutrality and provides practical tools to help individuals embrace their bodies. Sobczak, who struggled with an eating disorder herself, shares her personal journey and offers insight into the societal pressures surrounding body image. With exercises and personal stories, Embody encourages readers to challenge cultural norms and shift their focus toward body neutrality.
Dispelling these myths can be challenging in a society that tells us how we should feel about our bodies. With these books about body neutrality, you can learn how to overcome these societal concepts to find the body acceptance and radical self-love you deserve.
This article was written exclusively for Love What Matters by Kate Fann. Be sure to subscribe to our free email newsletter for our best stories.
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