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Is The Media Responsible For Eating Disorders?


Michelle Meiklejohn / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

The media bombards us with pressure to be thin and perfect, and this kind of pressure does not lead to a healthy self-image or healthy eating habits. Women, especially teenage girls, are particularly vulnerable to the images of celebrity and model bodily perfection that are really just the result of personal trainers, stylists, and airbrushing. Despite the fact that women logically know that bodies portrayed in the media and popular culture are false idols, they still worship and strive for them and some women go as far as harming their bodies by developing eating disorders as a method of weight control. Eating disorders are on the rise across the Western world, and they are now becoming more prevalent in children. The media is not solely to blame for them; there are a variety of biological and environmental factors that contribute to the development of conditions such as anorexia and bulimia. Let’s take a look at some of the basics of eating disorders to get a better idea of how to combat them by creating healthy eating habits.

Eating disorders are a group of conditions characterized by abnormal or unhealthy eating habits; they include anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa and binge eating. There is much debate surrounding the precise cause of eating disorders: nobody really knows what causes them for sure. Like many other psychological/medical conditions, it is unclear if biology or environment play crucial roles, but many researchers believe that environmental factors are what shape eating disorders, particularly since they are more prevalent in Western cultures. Many people who develop these disorders have suffered from childhood abuse, be it physical, emotional, or sexual. Teenagers who are particularly influenced by peer pressure and the drive to be thin can also develop eating disorders. Controlling how and what you eat is a way that many deal with stress and feel that they have some order and control over their lives in a very complicated, fast, and high-pressure Western society.

Eating disorders are extremely harmful to the body and mind and if left untreated, they can be fatal. Depending on the disorder, they can cause constipation, scurvy, heart problems, cavities/tooth loss, brain atrophy, electrolyte imbalance, and kidney failure. Eating disorders are severe health problems that need to be dealt with swiftly in order to minimize the risk for permanent, long-term health damage.

There are many courses of treatment for people who suffer from these disorders, ranging from cognitive behavioral therapy to hypnotherapy and inpatient treatment. Helping people with eating disorders to discover an inner peace, inner love for themselves, and healthy eating habits is vital to their recovery and will help them to avoid relapses. If you or someone you know is suffering with an eating disorder don’t wait-get help today.

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Comments

  1. Maureen says:

    Thanks Carol, I do like to provide as much information as I can so people are well informed and then better able to care for themselves.

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