Every day, the media tells us a new thing to follow or a new trend to adopt. This is so overwhelming that we barely have time to think about what is real and what is not. What can be achieved and what is just a sham.
There are a lot of posts about unrealistic body standards for men and women. Actors and actress, TV broadcasters, Instagram models are all shown to be incredibly lean and thin which makes us believe we are unhealthy. This practice has a detrimental effect on self-esteem and eating habits of many people.
Growing body gap:
Most people are aware of the difference between their bodies and the incredibly lean or muscular bodies appearing in media. According to various surveys, there is a growing trend of thin bodies in media but an increase in average weights among the general population. This is alarming because exposure to such unrealistic body standards causes mental dissatisfaction. It leads to poor self-esteem and worsens mood. People then try to achieve those body standards which in truth are not really healthy and fall victim to negative behaviours like purging, inducing vomiting or adopt restrictive eating habits. This takes a toll on general and mental health as well. Psychologists believe that having a negative view of your body can affect the general quality of life and confidence.
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Health vs Looks:
What is being portrayed as ideal bodies for both male and females is actually the product of Photoshop and extreme restriction in diet. This is in no way relatable to the general population and creates false believes and depression that their body is not worth it. According to the study, many fitness models focus on how you look instead of how healthy you are. With the advent of social media, people can now choose to follow what they like and each fitness model has more guilt-inducing messages rather than motivation. This affects the self-esteem of the general population and causes them to adopt habits that are actually unhealthy for their body.
Many people like me are 9 to 5 workers who get very little time to exercise. It is recommended to exercise 30 min for 5 days a week and anyone should do it. But it is quite impossible to have 6 pack abs or be incredibly thin when a person is working half of the day. Thin bodies types being glorified on media are actually a product of worse eating habits and represent bad health from a medical point of view. Therapists recommend having a positive body image about yourself and therapy can actually help people suffering from negative body images to regain confidence.
There is growing awareness among the newer generation about what being healthy and fit means. People are now promoting self-acceptance and positive body images. With plus size models now being incorporated in fashion campaigns, there is a possibility that the younger generation will get the difference between being healthy and being thin.
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