Eating Disorders Essay

1448 Words 6 Pages
Eating disorders are conditions defined by abnormal eating habits that may involve either insufficient or excessive food intake to the detriment of an individual’s physical and mental health. People that have an eating disorder will have a negative view of their body image and generally try to control their weight by exercising excessively, purging, or dieting. According to National Eating Disorders Association (2008), approximately 20 million women and 10 million men suffer from a clinically significant eating disorder, which includes (but is not limited to) anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and binge eating disorder. Besides genetic and psychological factors, research has shown that the media is a huge contributor to
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These messages have a huge effect on young people and cause them to become overly obsessed with their appearance and weight, which may lead them to an eating disorder. In our modern society, media puts emphasis on being thin as a requirement to be beautiful. For instance, when a model or a celebrity gains a small amount of weight they are scrutinized by the media and will have their picture plastered on the front pages of magazines with horrible comments on their weight. Furthermore, if you look at the majority of advertisements, whether it be on television, Facebook, Twitter, or in a magazine, they are aimed at women and are products to help them look thinner and younger. In a typical day, statistics show that on average, a single person is exposed to at least 5,000 messages regarding weight and appearance. Those statistics put into perspective the idea of persuasion and how exactly it can affect social influences regarding body size and shape. Persuasion is a social influence where an attempt is made to change a person’s belief or attitude. Messages from the media undoubtingly show an unrealistic ideal for body size and shape. The average woman is 5’4” tall and weighs 140 pounds compared to an average American Model who is 5’11” tall and weighs 117 pounds. Something that is not necessarily new to the media world, but is quickly becoming the center of it, is the reality shows that are shown on most television networks. Shows like Bridalplasty,

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