Psychology

Body Image



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We all would love to be able to walk up to a mirror and like what we see looking back at us. But sometimes we don’t. In fact, more often than not we don’t like what we see at all as we tend to be our worst critics.

There are many factors that contribute to our desire – and sometimes even obsession – to look as thin and as pretty as we can. Most of it stems from a culture that places an abundance of emphasis on appearance. Skinny young beauties are portrayed everywhere. In magazines, on billboards, and of course it’s not at all uncommon to pass by an anorexic looking mannequin staring out at us through a store window.

But many people fail to keep in mind that not only is beauty skin deep, but there are potential health hazards that go with being underweight, and they just aren’t worth the pressure society often puts on us. If people can’t accept us as we are, then they aren’t the kinds of people we should be associating with to begin with. While it’s true that obesity can cause health problems as well, is having a few extra pounds on us really the end of the world if we’re happy and healthy?

The most important thing is keeping our bodies in shape and feeling its best. Proper diet and regular exercise is a very important part of life. Any health care provider would recommend it to anyone of any age. But when we go around judging people based on their appearance and not their personalities, it only puts added stress on the people we’re judging. And in return we may be missing out on getting to know what might have been a very good person because we decided they simply weren’t thin enough to bother with.

Many teenagers and women die each year of anorexia and bulimia. The staggering statistics are alarming, yet despite all the warnings out there and the fact that there is plenty of news coverage of some of the more famous cases, the growing number of people with eating disorders persists.

It’s ok to do what we feel is best for us. If you don’t like your weight, your body shape, or your hairstyle, it’s ok to change it. But this should be done in a safe and sensible manner. It should also be done only if we ourselves want to make the changes, and not because some other person or society in general thinks we should.

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