Essay about Media and Its Negative Effects

1217 Words Feb 1st, 2009 5 Pages
Media and the Negative Effects on Body Image Many things contribute to how a woman feels about her body. Peer pressure, family history, and age all play important roles in how people feel about how they look. The media can also play a dominant role on body image, as it almost always ties success, health, and happiness with being thin. To clarify body image, it is how you see yourself when you look in the mirror or picture yourself in your mind. With the constant exposure to media images of the “ideal” female body it is presenting an unrealistic “ideal” difficult to achieve and maintain it can lead to depression, lower self-esteem, and increases unhealthy eating habits. The average model portrayed in the media is approximately 5'11" …show more content…
Girls are starting to diet at younger ages and developing the most recognized eating disorders such as anorexia or bulimia. The American Psychiatric Association characterizes anorexia and bulimia as psychosocial disorders that result in distortions in self-image and self-perception (1994). Statistics show about 10 in 100 adolescent girls suffers from anorexia due to media influence impacting on girls to be thin (American Academy, 2008). In Boston a mandatory physical education class in an elementary, middle, and high school where 548 girls in fifth through twelfth grades participated in a survey to see the impact of the media on feelings about weight, shape, and the ideal body image. Sixty-nine percent of the girls reported that magazine pictures influenced their idea of the perfect body shape, and forty-seven percent reported wanting to lose weight because of magazine pictures (Media, 1999). Typical women’s magazines, such as Glamour, Teen, or Cosmopolitan, reinforce the idea that a ‘healthy’ weight is one that is as low as possible. In the United States the average person sees approximately 3,000 ads in the media everyday (Witmer, n.d.). Teenagers are getting bombarded by the ideal body image much too often. These images continue to be typically portrayed in spite of our increasing awareness of

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