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Viewing Our Bodies Through a Broken Mirror

By Alison Ross, LMFT, CEDS

Body dysmorphia is a distorted perception of your body that can result from being mistreated, shamed, or excessively scrutinized about your body. Being mistreated about your body is an experience all too common in diet culture that often leads to excessive worries and distorted thinking about appearance. And it can cause body dysmorphia, a condition where you to perceive your body as you fear it is, instead of how it actually is.

Interestingly, this distorted perception is a survival mechanism ingrained in our nature, where we overestimate perceived threats to protect ourselves. An example of this is when you're hiking and notice a shadow in the bushes. Your mind is likely to interpret it as big and threatening, even if it's not actually dangerous. This instinctive response prompts swift action for self-preservation. It's like nature saying, "Save yourself! Run!"

Similarly, when you've been conditioned to fear your own body, you are likely to perceive it as you fear it to be, not as it truly is. But for those who struggle, body dysmorphia is a really devastating experience because that fearful perception feels so real.

At Non-Dieting Health, we treat body dysmorphia at its core by targeting the stress response. Using neurofeedback brainwave training, we treat the nervous system, reducing the fear you were made to feel about your body to help you restore a more objective perception.

If you or someone you know is struggling with body dysmorphia, please reach out or visit our website at for further support.


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