Love Your Summer Body With These 5 Books

These summer reads will have you rethinking your relationship with your body—and almost everything you were told about health.

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From constant talk about “summer bodies” to the need to bare more skin when the weather really starts heating up, the hottest season of the year is a hard time for many to feel 100% comfortable in their own skin. That’s because so much of media and advertising still doesn’t show a full range of body types—and that can leave those of us whose bodies aren’t represented feeling out of place.

This summer, let’s rewrite the script. Pack your beach tote with books that make you feel great in your skin and rethink what media, advertising, and even doctors have been telling us for so long. To get you started, here are 5 books Dia&Co team members recommend and why they made such a difference in their lives.

the fck it diet caroline dooner

Image courtesy of HarperCollins

“The F*ck It Diet” by Caroline Dooner

“We’ve been inundated with diet culture all our lives and are sometimes so steeped in it that we don’t even realize. Until I read this book, I took the widely spread beliefs about food, weight, and health as gospel and accepted them without question. This surprisingly funny anti-diet guide has science-backed proof that we’ve been given the wrong information for decades—and that trusting your body, and accepting and loving it at any size, is the surest route to health and happiness. I feel better about my relationship to food and to my body, and as a result, better about my life.”

Sarah d.J., Editorial Copywriter

body of truth harriet brown

Image courtesy of Hatchette Book Group

“Body of Truth” by Harriet Brown

“If I were to sum up ‘Body of Truth’ into one word, that word would be validating. This is an especially great read if you have people in your life who you feel antagonize you with ‘health concerns.’ The book is broken up into small sections, which I always like for a summer read so I can easily pick up where I left off. With a mix of personal anecdotes and delving into medical studies, ‘Body of Truth’ gave me the language and statistics to defend myself, and reclaim what ‘health’ means to me in a fat body.”

Sean P., Social Content Specialist

the beauty myth naomi wolf

Image courtesy of HarperCollins

“The Beauty Myth” by Naomi Wolf

“For my personal journey toward body acceptance, it’s been important to question why society’s standards of beauty are so narrow—but also why those standards exist in the first place. ‘The Beauty Myth’ examines the ways in which culturally imposed beauty standards have effectively served to drain women’s time, energy, and brainpower—resources which could otherwise be put to use fighting for more social and political power. This line really drove the point home for me: ‘A culture fixated on female thinness is not an obsession about female beauty, but an obsession about female obedience.'”

Carol G., Director of Communications

things no one will tell fat girls jes baker

Image courtesy of Seal Press

“Things No One Will Tell Fat Girls” by Jes Baker

“Avid reader and follower of ‘The Militant Baker’ since my college days, I was super excited to read Jes Baker’s first book when it was announced. Once I got my hands on a copy, I devoured it in less than a day. It’s a well-researched book that feels more like a conversation and covers issues surrounding body image and the body-positive movement. I greatly appreciated the fact that she made a point to include discussions on social class, status, and how they relate to plus-size fashion—since the truth of the matter is that there are people who can’t afford to eat a certain way or live a certain type of lifestyle. It’s definitely a must-read, even if you’re not plus size.”

Marlena M., CX Associate

the body is not an apology sonya renee taylor

Image courtesy of Penguin Random House

“The Body is Not an Apology” by Sonya Renee Taylor

“A valuable read for anyone feeling like their body doesn’t ‘fit’ in this world due to body size, race, disability, gender, sexual orientation, etc. She breaks down systems of oppression, how they relate to our bodies and profit from body shaming. She writes with love, compassion, and empathy and in a way that gently challenges the reader to contemplate the world around them.”

Natali T., Technology Manager


Has a book changed your relationship to your body? Share your experience in the Dia&Co National Community Facebook group and start a conversation!