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Fat And Weight Loss: Why Do I Hate My Body?
Nowadays, more and more men and women are finding themselves dissatisfied with what they see in the mirror. Women are especially prone to becoming victims of their body image. According to a Harvard study, half of all 13-year-old girls are significantly unhappy with their bodies, and by the time they turn 18, more than 80% of them are dissatisfied with their appearance. According to Bliss magazine, 92% of a sample of 2,000 girls were reported to be dissatisfied with their appearance, and up to 40% of these girls considered cosmetic surgery to correct their problem areas. Numbers like these aren’t surprising to most, but they shouldn’t be accepted as “a part of life.” These numbers could reverse dramatically because these problems most often arise from the environment, as opposed to genetics.
How does it start?
Most ideas about ideal body proportions come at a relatively young age. Probably the most disturbing statistic is that according to the Oxford Center for Social Issues Research, a recent Swedish study found that 25% of girls aged 7 had already tried a diet to lose weight. Absolutely disgusting. The biggest reason this trend exists is the current atmosphere of show business and the waifish look people are advocating in it. Mothers look in the mirror and complain about how fat they are, and children who are just as impressionable as them imitate their mother and her complaints. It may sound like an oversimplification, but you as a parent play a big role in defining your child’s self-image. If children hear nothing but complaints about how thick mommy’s thighs are, then they will most likely start saying the same about their own thighs. The same goes for fathers. If the father has any issues with body dysmorphia and complains that he needs a more imposing figure, then the sons will also be adversely affected by these words and struggle with low self-esteem just like their sisters. So parents keep your unhealthy appearance expectations out of earshot of your child.
How can I feel better about my body?
It has recently come to light why people, and women in particular, hate their bodies. There are several factors to consider. The University of Calgary Food Awareness Team identified six different elements that influence a person’s body image: visual, mental, emotional, kinesthetic, historical and social. Obviously, the visual refers to what one sees in the mirror when looking at oneself. Mental refers to what one says about oneself when standing in front of a mirror. The emotional aspect has to do with how a person feels about their body. Kinesthetics refers to how one senses and feels the movement of one’s body. Historical refers to all past experiences that a person remembers about their appearance. Finally, the social aspect is how you perceive your body in relation to societal norms. These six elements speak to understanding and ultimately overcoming an unrealistic and unhealthy perspective of the human body.
Women are supposed to be thin while men are supposed to be lean and muscular, but this is often unreasonable and is achieved at the expense of health. Most women look to models as the perfect beauty, however most supermodels weigh 25% less than the average woman and these models typically maintain weights that are 15-20% below the recommended norm for women of their age and height. In other words, they seem to be suffering from the side effects of eating disorders. So a healthy self-image starts at home. Realize that what one sees in the magazines is hyped and when it is not hyped it is too dangerous and taxing on the body to try to achieve. If you can realize that a thin frame does not necessarily mean a healthy body, then you are on the right path. This path will save you from dangerous crash diets and your children from unattainable and downright foolish definitions of beauty and health. Women also need to remember that cosmetic surgery must be done only for themselves and not for the approval of a loved one or in the hope of winning over a loved one. It is true that a healthy life requires regular exercise and a proper diet, but one could argue that none of this would be possible without a healthy frame of mind. So don’t neglect the mental side.
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