Episode 16: Before and After Photos Don't Tell the Whole Story

Before and After Photos

Don’t Tell the Whole Story

I was going through my Instagram feed when I came across a great post by Jenna Jozefowski talking about how before/after photos posted all over social media or in diet ads may make some of us squirm vs feel inspired.  I immediately had to address this topic here on Speaking of Hungry!

There was a time in my disordered days when I looked at before and after photos and thought, "Wow, this girl has it all figured out!" Now, as an anti-diet, intuitive eating counselor, AND someone who has gone through an eating disorder and disordered eating recovery, I look at these photos VERY differently. 

Yes, these people probably worked very hard. I do understand our need to want to celebrate how hard we've worked at something and I think it's amazing to share how proud you are of you. 

I look at these pictures deeper. Why? Because I've heard the "AFTER" story from the BEFORE/AFTER photos. When everyone was praising their weight loss, how awesome they looked, how fit and sculpted their body became.... but they later reveal it all came at a hefty price. 

The sacrifices of the "after" pictures may have been more than missing out on carbs. It may have led to fear and anxiety around food, fatigue, depression, missed periods, fertility issues, 24/7 thinking about food, becoming withdrawn and missing social functions, working out to the point of exhaustion and injury ... the list goes on. 

Listen here as I talk about how to deal with before/after pictures that can be a huge TRIGGER and sneakily lure you back into the empty promises of diet culture. 


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Mentioned on this episode:

Jenna Jozefowski and her recent Instagram post about before/after photos

Alison's 1:1 online intuitive eating counseling