What is your relationship like with your social media apps? Do you often find yourself spending hours scrolling and wanting to stop but not knowing how? What can you do to upgrade your social media literacy and take back your control? In this podcast episode, Dr. Cristina Castagnini speaks about the swing in social media to the body positivity movement with Dr. Jillian Lampert.


Dr. Jillian Lampert is the Chief Strategy Officer of Accanto Health, the parent company of Veritas Collaborative and The Emily Program. Additionally, Dr. Lampert is Co-Founder and President of the REDC, the national consortium representing eating disorders care focused on treatment standards, best practices, access to care, and collaborative research. She is also a Board Member of the Eating Disorders Coalition, a DC-based national organization for eating disorders policy and advocacy, and a Board Member of WithAll, a Minnesota-based organization that empowers eating disorder prevention and strengthens support for recovery. She holds an adjunct graduate faculty position in the Department of Food Science and Nutrition at the University of Minnesota.

Visit The Emily Program and connect on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok, and LinkedIn.

See also the Veritas Collaborative and connect with them on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube.


  • Why you must be wary of social media
  • Develop your social media literacy
  • Building healthier social media habits
  • Positive changes in social media

Why you must be wary of social media

Social media is a great tool. It offers global platforms where you can meet, interact with, and see other people, and their lives, and hear their stories. However, we often forget that social media is just a window into one room of that person’s life and it is not the full picture, and because we might not know that individual personally, we may never know what struggles they are facing. So, when you compare yourself to someone else on social media, you are comparing your whole life to one chapter of theirs that you can see. Be careful doing that, and avoid it at all costs.
The pieces that are tricky with social media [is that there is] so much content … social media gives you a lot to notice, a lot to take in, and a lot to compare yourself to and – from a neurobiological and psychological perspective – social media is designed to work within the human psyche and how we respond psychologically to stimuli, and the algorithms for social media are set up to continue to pull us in. (Dr. Lampert)

Develop your social media literacy

If you find yourself getting caught up in social media spirals often, what can help you to recenter yourself is to get better at your social media literacy. Learn about social media and the fact that it was been designed to keep you scrolling endlessly. Those platforms watch your interaction, and will do almost anything to get you to stay on them for longer, liking and scrolling and sharing as much as possible.
When you look at the literature on dopamine and the dopamine spikes that happen when we get interesting things [that] we see or when we experience interesting things [on social media], it’s really the anticipation that spikes our dopamine. It’s really like, “What’s the next one?” So, social media is a perfect place to get a whole slew of dopamine spikes because you’re going to keep scrolling for the next one. (Dr. Lampert)
Once you understand and notice this concept, you can pull yourself out of the rabbit hole that social media invites you into. When you notice that you are scrolling mindlessly, you can pull the plug, shut the app, and regain intentional control.

Building healthier social media habits

In our technological world, social media is here to stay. Instead of deleting your apps or binging hours on them, strive to build a more self-aware and accountable relationship with the number of hours and amount of energy that you spend on those apps.
It really is a question I think of how [do] we modulate exposure [to social media]? How do you know if you’re spending too much time on social media, [and] what do you do about it? How do you take care of yourself? (Dr. Lampert)
What can you do to train yourself – and your brain – to take breaks from social media, change your following list, or be aware of when things are filtered or not. Remember that you are in control. You can always decide to put the technology down, close the app, and go for a walk to clear your mind. Your attention and focus are precious, so be intentional with which things you allow to grab onto them.

Positive changes in social media

What is necessary – and positive – in the social media space is diversity. People need to be reminded that bodies look different, are different, and that they should not be compared to each other. When social media platforms, stores, or brands use a diverse range of people to showcase their products, it reduces a lot of stress on their followers and even makes the brand seem more relatable and honest.
[People] walk into Target and they see a variety of bodies up on those pictures, even if they’re not really paying attention, everybody sees it and it just filters in … that kind of exposure to variety … matches [our] reality. (Dr. Lampert)
The more that the images we see match our lived experience, and our reality, the better it is for our brains because then it sees that things are as they should be. It communicates to our brain that people with a variety of shapes and sizes are all okay.



  I am a licensed Psychologist and Certified Eating Disorder Specialist. While I may have over 20 years of clinical experience, what I also have is the experience of having been a patient who had an eating disorder as well. One thing that I never had during all of my treatment was someone who could look me in the eye and honestly say to me "Hey, I've been there. I understand". Going through treatment for an eating disorder is one of the hardest and scariest things to do. I remember being asked to do things that scared me. Things I now know ultimately helped me to get better. But, at the time, I had serious doubts and fears about it. If even one of my providers had been able to tell me "I know it's scary, but I had to go through that part too. Here's what will probably happen...." then perhaps I would not have gone in and out of treatment so many times. My own experience ultimately led me to specialize in treating eating disorders. I wanted to be the therapist I never had; the one who "got it". I will be giving you my perspective and information as an expert and clinician who has been treating patients for over 2 decades. But don't just take my word for it...keep listening to hear the truly informative insights and knowledge guest experts have to share. I am so happy you are here!


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