Portrayal of Women in the Media

1294 words 6 pages
The facts are haunting. The American research group Anorexia Nervosa & Related Eating Disorders, Inc. says that one in every four college-aged women use unhealthy methods of weight and diet control – including fasting, skipping meals, and laxative abuse. The pressure to be thin is also affecting young girls; the Canadian Women’s Health Network warns that weight control measures are now being taken by girls as young as 5 and 6. In 2003, Teen Magazine reported that 35% of girls 6 to 12 years of age have already been on at least one diet. It is estimated that up to 450,000 young girls and women were/are affected by an eating disorder; Women’s magazines have over 10 times more ads promoting dieting and weight loss than men’s magazines. Women’s …show more content…

The first step to combating this “ideal” is to create your own ideal body image:
1. Listen to your body. Eat when you are hungry.
2. Be realistic about the size you are likely to be based on your genetic and environmental history.
3. Exercise regularly in an enjoyable way, regardless of size.
4. Expect normal weekly and monthly changes in weight and shape
5. Work towards self-acceptance and self forgiveness- be gentle with yourself.
6. Ask for support and encouragement from friends and family when life is stressful.
7. Decide how you wish to spend your energy -- pursuing the "perfect body image" or enjoying family, friends, school and, most importantly, life.
Refer to the three A’s:
Attention -- Refers to listening for and responding to internal cues (i.e., hunger, satiety, fatigue).
Appreciation -- Refers to appreciating the pleasures your body can provide.
Acceptance -- Refers to accepting what is -- instead of longing for what is not. Our current society has learned to treasure beauty before brains. This effects girls more than ever to change how they dress and how they look in order to be accepted. For example, well-respected news-show host Greta Van Susteren moved from CNN to Fox in 2002; in doing so, she surgically altered her face to appear younger and more “beautiful”. Her surgery symbolizes what many media analysts have argued for decades: that the way a woman looks


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