How much time do you spend on social media? How much of that time is spent comparing your real, present reality to a makeshift and constructed reality that people try to mimic? When should you take a break from social media? In this podcast episode, Dr. Cristina Castagnini speaks about the dangers of social media filter apps, how they create unattainable standards and how it affects those struggling with body image and eating disorders.


  • There is no way to compare
  • Eating disorders and filtered apps

There is no way to compare

There is no way to accurately compare and recreate real-life in photographs where the goal is to change what real life is showing, without any damage to your self-perception. There is no real reason to edit the pictures we take of ourselves and others to such a degree that we look the opposite of what we are trying to achieve: instead of looking like a perfect version of reality, we end up not looking real at all.
Spending hours on social media and being exposed to these filtered, altered images, it’s going to affect how someone looks at themselves in comparison. (Dr. Cristina Castagnini)

Eating disorders and filtered apps

For people who are in the throes of an eating disorder, who are recovering from one, or who identify as perfectionists, it can be incredibly triggering to have this technology at one’s fingertips: the power to edit and change a representation of you to a version that you find acceptable. This unreal, often unattainable constructed version of yourself then becomes dangerous, because when someone is struggling with an eating disorder, they may identify more with the constructed reality that reflects the one their eating disorder is guiding them towards, instead of the actual reality they exist in.
We know perfectionism is a potential risk factor for the development of an eating disorder … these apps only perpetuate the idea that we can all look perfect. (Dr. Cristina Castagnini)
If you find yourself starting to compare yourself to others, or to a constructed version of your digitally altered self, perhaps consider taking a lengthy break from social media to clear your mind and realign with your body.



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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