Why you need to curate your social media feed and who you need to follow
Is your Instagram feed looking a little too wellness-y? Are the constant beach bodies, Covid getaways, and yet another marriage proposal getting you down?
Research shows that social media can impact our body image, mood and self-esteem, with pretty negative consequences – increasing symptoms of depression and anxiety even when factoring in the COVID-19 pandemic. (1)
Instagram, in particular, has been criticised as a platform with a tendency to promote orthorexic behaviours and symptoms in young people when this was not found across other social channels. (2)
Stating this, we also must recognise the importance of social media and its value in connecting others, particularly in a world where we feel so distanced by busy lives, not to mention a global pandemic.
Social media can also be a fantastic way to educate, advocate, and express our thoughts to the outer world. Public health professionals’ implications for the use of visual social media such as Instagram is also being recognised. (3)
In an increasingly tech-reliant world, we must learn to live with social media, but how can we do it positively and sustainably? Perhaps a little sprinkle of good vibes and empowerment into your feed can help you recognise tools and abilities you can live and work with to live a more fulfilling, grateful life.
If your following needs a revamp of positive, uplifting content – look no further! Embody Health London loves to support others in the mental health and body image space, so we have handpicked some of our favourite accounts for you to follow and be inspired by. And, if you’re not already, be sure to give your favourite dancing dietitians a follow, too.
Megan Jayne Crabbe, aka The ‘bodyposipanda’, started her Instagram after discovering the world of body positivity and the liberation it gave her. On her blog you can find all things intuitive eating, bikini confidence, size prejudice, and so much more on diet culture.
Her book, Body Positive Power, is a must-read for anyone looking to understand diet culture problems better and be inspired to live full, wholesome lives without worrying about weight.
Elizabeth of @daylightillustrations posts adorable and uplifting graphics on all things self-care, motivation and positivity. We love her use of pretty pastels and illustrations and know you will, too, particularly all of the feline lovers out there!
You can also check out her Etsy shop where you can buy (or simply be inspired by) her beautiful quotes, stickers, journals, and wall-hangs. Having positive messages of reinforcement can be a fabulous tool in improving our self-esteem and mood, so she is absolutely worth checking out.
Lindley Ashline is a body liberation activist, providing resources on unpacking weight stigma, inclusive clothing brands, body-positive journalling, and more.
On top of this, she is a professional photographer who creates body-positive, HAES-aligned stock photos for marketing purposes to allow businesses to represent their clients better.
You can check out her website to learn more about her work.
Aubrey Gordon started out by anonymously posting about the social challenges and realities of living in a larger body under the pseudonym ‘your fat friend.’
Today, she writes for the New York Times, Vox, Lit Hub, SELF Magazine, and Health Magazine, among others, and has published her first book titled ‘What We Don’t Talk About When We Talk About Fat.’
You can also find Aubrey co-hosting the podcast ‘Maintenance Talks‘ with Michael Hobbes, and check out her ‘Fat Reading List’ for some bookshelf inspiration! Whether you like poetry, non-fiction or a memoir, she’s got you covered.
The Confidence Corner is a female-led community space for women to relate, engage, and learn. Callie and Lauren are two plus-sized women who are striving to create a platform for women to connect and make their voices heard.
There is the option to become a paid member of their community and receive access to monthly resources that can boost your self-esteem and help you to live your best life.
This includes access to private Facebook and Instagram communities, a self-development book and TV club, as well as exclusive discounts, events and talks with experts.
You can also check out their blog and look out for Callie’s podcast on Spotify, Apple, or wherever you get your podcasts.
Whilst there are countless self-care accounts now out there, we think this one deserves a special mention. Self-care express is an adorable Instagram account filled with cute quotes, affirmations, and advice.
As much as we appreciate its highly aesthetic feed (and who doesn’t love one?) We are obsessed with this account because its designs and uplifting posts alone are enough to boost your mood when you might be having a tough day.
The infographics are the perfect balance of informative and inspiring, without being overwhelming. As we know, digesting information in bite-sized chunks throughout your day can be most effective in your healing journey.
If you enjoyed this article, go out there and give all of these queens a follow! As always, stay tuned for more delicious blog content from us.
Take care and carry on your incredible journey with all of the beautiful compassion, optimism, and strength we know you have within you!
Priya Chotai, BSc ANutr
EHL Team x
1. Gao J, Zheng P, Jia Y, Chen H, Mao Y, Chen S, Wang Y, Fu H, Dai J. Mental health problems and social media exposure during COVID-19 outbreak. PLoS One. 2020 Apr 16;15(4):e0231924. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0231924. PMID: 32298385; PMCID: PMC7162477.
2. Turner PG, Lefevre CE. Instagram use is linked to increased symptoms of orthorexia nervosa. Eat Weight Disord. 2017 Jun;22(2):277-284. doi: 10.1007/s40519-017-0364-2. Epub 2017 Mar 1. PMID: 28251592; PMCID: PMC5440477.
3. Fung IC, Blankenship EB, Ahweyevu JO, Cooper LK, Duke CH, Carswell SL, Jackson AM, Jenkins JC 3rd, Duncan EA, Liang H, Fu KW, Tse ZTH. Public Health Implications of Image-Based Social Media: A Systematic Review of Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr, and Flickr. Perm J. 2020;24:18.307. doi: 10.7812/TPP/18.307. Epub 2019 Dec 6. PMID: 31852039; PMCID: PMC6907901.