Will Demi Lovato’s Bikini Photo Hurt Her Recovery? Expert Weighs In

/ May 18, 2011

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Was Demi Lovato’s bikini photo an encouraging declaration of her new healthy body image or a dangerous example to set for girls who are themselves battling with self-image issues?  When the Disney star – who has publicly declared that she has had issues with eating disorders – posted a photo of herself in a white bikini on Twitter, most fans came out in support but some critics felt that it was the wrong path to take to show off her new confidence.

Dodai Stewart from Jezebel wondered if Demi’s new-found body confidence went beyond posting bikini pics on the internet. “Hopefully she also realizes it’s a body made for thinking, laughing, nourishing and other stuff besides wearing a bathing suit,” Dodai wrote earlier this week.

When asked about the criticism, Dr. Wendy Lader of S.A.F.E. Alternatives, told Celebuzz that she didn’t think it really applied to this particular case.

“If it’s meaningful to her that she’s able to put herself out there and not care what people say or don’t say then that is a coup for her and she’s come a long way,” Wendy noted. “So, if that’s what she’s doing for herself then all the more power to her.”

Besides, Dr. Lader notes, people who are in the spotlight are always being criticized about their appearance. “People are always going to find the flaw or the negative, especially if you are a star,” Wendy says. “She’s a beautiful young woman, it’s sad that there was any question whatsoever that she wouldn’t be able to be in a bikini in front of people. It’s sad that she had to go through that, I think it’s wonderful that she’s at that point now.”

“I’ve been working so hard to get healthy and fit,” Demi wrote on her Twitter. “I never thought I’d ever feel confident enough to ever to that. I’m excited how far I’ve come since being completely ashamed of my body. I never thought I’d ever feel confident enough to ever to that. I’m excited how far I’ve come since being completely ashamed of my body.”

Dr. Lader is quick to point out that her support for Demi comes with one caveat: “I would assume – and I would hope – that she had talked with her treatment team about this.” Since people often pick apart celebrities’ bodies, posting a photo of yourself in a bikini for all the world to see could be dangerous for someone recovering from an eating disorder.

Luckily, everyone’s reaction to Demi’s bikini photos has been overwhelmingly positive. Fans have been posting sweet notes to Demi star and Jordin Sparks (who recently posted her own bikini photo on Twitter) sent words of encouragement to her fellow Disney star. “Work girl,” Jordin tweeted at Demi. “You look amazing!”

Demi checked into a treatment center for eating disorders, self-harm and a bipolar disorder in November. She was released from in-patient treatment in January and left her hit Disney show, Sonny with a Chance, to focus on her recovery.

Do you think it was good for Demi to post her bikini photo on the internet? Sound off in the comments.