Demi Lovato On Her Body Image Journey: Recovery Begins With Honesty

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She has spoken openly about her battle with an eating disorder and self harm in the past. But singer and actress Demi Lovato isn’t done talking about her recovery journey just yet, because like many sufferers are taught in treatment, recovery is a lifelong process. Demi believes in using her celebrity status as a platform to encourage others and share good news.

In an interview with Buzzfeed during Eating disorder awareness week (Feb 22-28) she spoke about how she defines confidence today, how she deals with insecurities and what she would do differently if she had a do-over at life.

For those who are struggling with some of the same issues she did, it is important to remember everyone’s journey is unique and different, but there is much to be learned in sharing stories. Sometimes it can be hard to find people in your own community who you can empathize with, but thanks to social media platforms and technology, finding online resources and recovery networks has never been easier.

Given that we live in such a celebrity-obsessed culture, when star such as Demi Lovato who have such a huge influence over young men and women speak out about an important issue, people take notice.

“For me, healthy living involves taking care of myself — both mentally and physically. It means surrounding myself with positive and supportive people, as well as exercising and maintaining a well-balanced diet. At this point, healthy living is just a way of life,” she says.

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One of the thing she started implementing into her routine on her journey to self-acceptance was her #nomakeupmonday selfies, which you may have seen if you follow her on Twitter or Instagram.

“I started posting #NoMakeupMonday selfies in hopes of inspiring other women to feel comfortable in their own skin. Embracing yourself is important and I wish that all women would realize how beautiful they are, inside and out.”

She also started her own skincare line called Devonne by Demi, which is specifically geared to bridge the gap between “pimple years and wrinkle years” says the website.

One of the things young celebrities get hammered with as they grow up in the spotlight is the pressure to stay looking a certain. It is unnecessary and unfair, because every other human being on the planet is allowed permission for their bodies to change and evolve. But somehow we expect celebrities to be superhuman. Demi is no stranger to this pressure which is one of the things she has battled publicly and now shares her insight with others.

“It’s only natural for your body to change as you get older. I have come a long way mentally, emotionally, and physically, and I’m proud of where I am today. When I look back, it saddens me to think that I was so hard on myself — when I was younger, I thought I had to look like everyone else, but I learned that beauty comes from how you feel about yourself. Once I started taking care of my mind, body, and soul, I realized that I didn’t need to conform to what’s “normal” and started to love myself.”

Just recently she posted an image of her lying on the beach in a bikini to her Instagram account with an empowering message for young girls who may be caught up in the ridiculous body trends that have grown momentum over the past couple of years on social media (fitso, thinspo, bikini bridge, thigh gaps etc).

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“Regardless of what society tells you these days…you don’t have to have a thigh gap to be beautiful. It is possibly to love your body the way it is,” she wrote in a caption next to the image. While she feels this way now, she certainly didn’t in her younger years going through the thick of her body struggles. It is something she doesn’t regret but would do differently if she could go back in time.

“You can’t live with regrets — every moment in my life has led me to where I am today, and because of my struggles, I’m able to serve as a role model and help others struggling with similar issues. If I could turn back time, I would tell myself that I’m beautiful every day, because we all are! And we need to start believing it!”

And if you don’t think Demi still has “those” days, you’d be wrong. Despite the beautiful smiles, and glamorous appearances, there are days when she struggles with insecurity.

“We’re all human so of course there are days when I’m feeling insecure. When that happens, I take time to reflect on how far I’ve come and how far I will continue to go — it helps me feel empowered and self-assured.”

At the essence of her journey to recovery, Demi believes it was about being honest with herself and acknowledging what wasn’t working in her life. It is something she encourages other people to do if they too are in the same position.

“I’ve been open about my struggles because part of my recovery includes being honest with myself and others, and I’m inspired to use my success as a platform to help others suffering. If you’re hurting, don’t be afraid to seek the help you need! Speak to someone — it may just change your life.”

“Ultimately, you can only help yourself — just know that you have a purpose and you are beautiful! Stay strong!”

If you are suffering with an eating disorder or think you need help with a body issue, please go to the National Eating Disorders Association website to find resources that can help you.

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2 Comments

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