The Pressure of Comparison on Appearance with Nadia Craddock, PhD

Image of Nadia Craddock smiling at camera with light pink and pinkish orange, with white block over her chest and the words in black: Nadia Craddock on Body Image

Nadia Craddock is a body image researcher for the Centre for Appearance Research. After recovering from her own eating disorder, she became interested in reducing harmful societal appearance pressures at the macro-level. In addition to her work with the Dove Self Esteem Project Research Partnership team, she is also the co-host of two podcasts: Appearance Matters: The Podcast! and The Body Protest Podcast.

My body does amazing things every day, without me even thinking about it.

Nadia Craddock

In this episode of In This Body, Nadia dives into important research findings on body image, comparison, appearance, and social media. And in true spirit to the ethos of the In This Body podcast, she shares her personal experience of being a biracial women and the additional pressures she’s felt to not only be exceptional, but also be an example of what that looks like.

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What You’ll Learn from the Interview with Nadia Craddock

  • What is meant by “positive body image” in research
  • The ways capitalism is linked to shame and how it makes shame easier to internalize than feelings of pride
  • How reaching for positive feelings about yourself can be small acts of resistance
  • What research suggests about comparison in social media leading to feelings of shame and objectification
  • How social media platforms are actually advertising platforms and ways they can be used to help improve body image
  • Why it is important to name various points of privilege one has
  • The benefits, according to research, of being in nature for mental health and body image

Quotables from Nadia Craddock


I think there is something exciting and dynamic and engaging about being in more diverse environments, for sure.


When we talk and think about positive body image, in body image research, it is this much broader idea of appreciating your body, respecting your body, taking care of your body, and celebrating and having gratitude for all of the things that your body can do, and does.


Re-shifting some of my focus from achievement to connection has been really important.


What social media has shown is that people do like body diversity. And I think that’s really powerful.


There’s all of the different ways society can make you feel ashamed for your body. I think that’s something to zoom out and look at… And then how do you take steps along the way to do those acts of resistance against feeling shame about your body. And find ways to appreciate it and respect and care for it.

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Connect with Nadia Craddock

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