Are There Any Disparities Between Men and Women and How They're Affected by Body Image Content on Social Media?
But have you ever wondered how all those images of other people’s bodies – whether your friend’s holiday snap or a celebrity’s gym selfie – could be affecting how you view your own? Much has been made over the years about how mainstream media presents unrealistic beauty standards in the form of photoshopped celebrities or stick-thin fashion models. Now that influencers fill up our feeds, it's easy to imagine that social media, too, is all bad when it comes to body image.
Additional research with sexual minority men is needed to elucidate the distinctions between adaptive and maladaptive social media use in the context of body dissatisfaction, eating disorders, and anabolic steroid use.
These disordered attitudes are defined as afflictions in which people suffer severe disruption in their eating behaviours, thoughts and emotions (Bailey A.P., Parker A.G., 2014). The people who suffer from these complaints are usually preoccupied with food and weight. In this sense, disordered eating is used to describe a range of irregular eating behaviours that may or may not warrant a diagnosis of a specific disordered eating attitude. These disorders usually occur in women in their twenties or during adolescence. People who suffer these disorders usually present altered attitudes, behaviours, weight perception and physical appearance Moreover, disordered eating behaviours or attitudes are defined as unhealthy or maladaptive eating behaviours, such as restricting or binging and/or purging. These behaviours are not categorized as an eating disorder, though they are considered a phase of diagnosed eating disorders (Telch C.F., Pratt E.M., 1997). Although these diseases have a crucial psychobiological component, social and cultural factors have a significant influence. Among these factors, advertising has been described as an internalizing or normalizing means to spread unrealistic beauty ideals.
The current paper aims to address this gap by surveying and extending existing theory, using a critical review methodology, to derive a provisional theoretical model that explains how social media influence body image and weight and shape control behaviours of sexual minority men in particular. Our proposed model serves as an extension to the transactional model of social media and body image concerns, which includes additions to individual vulnerability factors (perceived self-discrepancy, gender nonconformity, minority stress) and psychosocial mediating processes (sexual objectification, sociocultural processes, online disinhibition).
Dowds J. What do young people think about eating disorders and prevention programmes? Implications for partnerships between health, education and informal youth agencies. JPMH. 2010;9:30–41. doi: 10.5042/jpmh.2010.0701.
Fardouly J., Vartanian L.R. Negative comparisons about one’s appearance mediate the relationship between Facebook usage and body image concerns. Body Image. 2015;12:82–88. doi: 10.1016/j.bodyim.2014.10.004.
Bailey A.P., Parker A.G., Colautti L.A., Hart L.M., Liu P., Hetrick S.E. Mapping the evidence for the prevention and treatment of eating disorders in young people. J. Eat. Disord. 2014;2:5. doi: 10.1186/2050-2974-2-5.
Telch C.F., Pratt E.M., Niego S.H. Obese women with binge eating disorder define the term binge. Int. J. Eat. Disord. 1997