Body Images Affecting Canadian Youth

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Body images and the ensuing and inevitable body shaming, has grown to become a pressing problem impacting the Canadian youth. With overweight rates at 65% and 30% for adults and children, respectively, one may see weight loss as the necessary solution to solve all body images stigmas. On the contrary, eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa are climbing steadily amongst today’s Canadian youth. (Derene & Beresin, 2006). With such drastic sides of the spectrum, many have pointed toward different potential reasons for this trend however, a key determinant that must be tackled in the role the media play’s in the lives of today’s youth. The average child spends 4 hours per day watching television, heavily outweighing activities…show more content…
Dissatisfaction amongst today’s youth regarding their personal body image is increasingly common, warranting a necessary change in the norms and behaviours that are portrayed to Canadian youth. The necessary change that must be implemented moving forward is the portrayal of healthy and attainable body images through media. A 2012 ABC News article stated the average model weighs 23% less than the average woman (Lovett, 2012). Such an appalling statistic is something that must be tackled as we progress toward the future seeing as it showcases to the youth of today that anorexia and unhealthy body weight is seen as desirable or attractive. The relation between such a statistic and anorexia is clear. Such unrealistic body images featured prominently in media platforms (i.e. television, internet) and with media becoming more accessible to Canadian youth, it is unsurprising that anorexia and bulimia are being diagnosed at younger ages (Derene & Beresin, 2006). The link to such media representations and overweight is less evident however through further research it is clear that media can promote both extreme weight loss or lead to extreme weight gain. With media moving away from the promotion of healthy lifestyles, and rather working toward feeding the current media addiction plaguing Canadian children and teens, today’s media companies are feeding into the slippery slope that is weight

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