body love

How To Transform Body Hate Into Body Love

June 21, 2021

Transform Body Hate Into Body Love

“I’ll feel better it when I can fit into those jeans.”

“If I could just weigh what I used to I’d look so much better.”

“My body sabotages everything I try to do to be healthy.”

“I hate my body!”

Have you ever had one of these thoughts? Or maybe all of them?

Negative thoughts like these can be a sign you have an unhealthy relationship with your body or even “body hatred.” In this article, body hatred refers to having dissatisfaction with your body.

In research studies, body hatred is referred to as “body dissatisfaction.” Studies show that people with obesity and women are more likely to have body dissatisfaction. To keep things simple in this article, we’ll use the terms “body hatred” or ”body hate.” It’s important to address body hate because it can keep you from body love and lead to low self-esteem, self-sabotage, and even depression.

The question is, how do you transform body hate to body love?  Here are 5 steps that may help.

Steps To Transform Body Hate to Body Love


Write down your negative thoughts

What do you say to yourself regularly? Words are so powerful. Even if it may seem to help initially, negative self-talk can eventually sabotage our lasting weight loss efforts because it feels like fighting against ourselves. Writing your thoughts down forces you to acknowledge and confront them.  Often we’d never say aloud the unkind thoughts we’re thinking towards ourselves.


Match each negative thought with a positive body love affirmation

Once you’ve acknowledged the negative thoughts, it’s important to replace them with a positive affirmation. Studies have shown that positive self-affirmations can help with weight loss and wellness by improving your openness to health information & increasing your likelihood to make positive health changes.  If you need help creating body love affirmations, you can get a free copy of Embrace Daily Affirmations for Optimal Wellness.


Release people, places, circumstances & mindsets that make you feel bad about your body

In addition to addressing the internal sources of body hate, it’s important to remove any external sources of negativity. Simple things like getting rid of clothes that no longer fit can help relieve the pressure to return to a certain size.

Additionally, studies show having a positive support team is helpful to improve self-esteem and body image. As you develop a loving relationship with your body, it’s important to protect yourself from any sources that may keep you from body love and trigger body hate.


Invest in clothes that make you feel good in your current body

Too often, I’ve worked with people that are former fashionistas that are punishing themselves by wearing drab clothing until “I weight.” Or people force themselves into uncomfortable, ill-fitting clothing because they don’t want to “buy anything at this size.” This makes you feel worse about yourself on the journey to your optimal wellness. Don’t wait any longer. Invest in comfortable clothing that looks good on your current body and makes you feel more like yourself.


Seek help, especially if you can’t move past hating your body

There are several causes of body hate ranging from a history of trauma/ abuse to several mental health disorders. Major depressive disorders and generalized anxiety disorders are the most common mental health disorders, especially during the pandemic.

Both depression and anxiety can be associated with a negative self-image. More specifically, body hate can be a symptom of psychiatric conditions such as eating disorders. The most common eating disorders are anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, or binge eating disorder.

Body dysmorphic disorder (BDD) is an obsessive-compulsive disorder characterized by intensely focusing on a physical feature the person thinks is flawed but not recognized as flawed by others. A significant amount of time is spent focusing on the feature and compulsively trying to correct it.

Both eating disorders and body dysmorphic disorder are serious medical conditions that need multidisciplinary treatment from medical and mental health professionals. If you suspect you have an eating disorder or body dysmorphic disorder, it is worth seeking help.

Try starting with the National Eating Disorders Association. It has a helpline and many resources. For body dysmorphic disorder, try finding a psychologist near you via Psychology

Transforming Yourself From Body Hate Into Body Love

As an Obesity Medicine expert who has also personally lost 60 pounds twice, I can say that the transformation from body hatred to body love or more importantly self-love doesn’t occur overnight. It is a gradual process that consists of many choices.

I encourage you to do the internal and external work to transform body hate to body love. Regardless of what your weight or wellness goal is, I have found that embracing self-love is essential to making lasting, lifelong transformations and move past harmful dieting that only leads to temporary changes. A diet may not last, but the gift of self-love and the positive lifestyle changes it contributes to can last a lifetime.


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Dr. Sylvia Gonsahn-Bollie, M.D. is a dual board-certified obesity medicine expert who learned to compassionately listen to women struggling with weight loss after she lost 60lbs, not once but twice. As CEO and lead physician of Embrace YOU Weight and Wellness, Dr. Bollie is passionate about empowering other women who have more than 25lbs to lose, stop obsessing over the scale and get to their happy, healthy weight for good through a customized wellness based strategy that can be used for your lifetime.
Read more articles by Dr. Sylvia Gonsahn-Bollie!