Even Women Without Eating Disorders Fear Getting Fat

Illustration for article titled Even Women Without Eating Disorders Fear Getting Fat

In a new study, pictures of overweight people triggered "anxiety about getting fat" even in women who "had no history of eating disorders and project an attitude that they don't care about body image." Men showed no such effect. [TimesOnline]

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I read an interesting study for my adolescent psych class that dealt with a similar issue. What was interesting about it was that when the researchers exchanged "dieting" for "muscle building" adolescent boys showed similar levels of body image issues (unhappiness with current body, talking with friends about how to change one's body etc) as adolescent girls.

I'm not oh poor menz-ing, I'm just saying that because society pressures both genders about their appearance in different ways, fear of being fat isn't necessarily the best measure for men's body images.

Obviously, societal pressure on women is far greater, but it's worth taking note that when the measure is a so-called 'male' equivalent to dieting/fear of fat (which is a problem in itself), men can be vulnerable to the harmful standards dictated by our current societal structure.