Eating Disorders: Personal or Social Problem? Essay

1879 Words Mar 10th, 2006 8 Pages
In today's society, there is much attention being given to the subject of eating disorders such as anorexia and bulimia; unfortunately it is because these disorders seem to be becoming more and more common. The question that remains is whether eating disorders such as these are simply personal problems of the individuals, or if they have become a social problem that needs to be addressed more aggressively. Having grown up in this society, I see this issue as a definite social problem. To say that these increasingly common eating disorders are personal problems, implies that the causes of them are personal as well, which I believe is not the case. A social problem is something that goes against society's goals and values; it would seem …show more content…
The clothes have become so small, that girls who wear a size 6 have to buy tops in a size "extra large" in order for them to fit. A teenage girl who is a petite size 6, the size of some top models, is being told she is extra large, and therefore she cannot gain any weight because she will not be able to buy the clothes she likes anymore. This is just another way that our society tells young women they need to be smaller, even when they may be slender to begin with.
Another way that the media is contributing to the increase in eating disorders is through the huge wave of fad diets, weight loss books, weight loss exercise machines, weight loss pills, and weight loss program centers. You cannot turn on a television channel without seeing a commercial for various methods of losing weight. The large majority of these programs, pills, and plans are ineffective in healthy weight reduction and only cause more problems for those who do need to lose weight. Also, those women who do not need to lose weight are made to feel as if they should. With so much emphasis put on weight loss, many women who are of healthy weights already begin to feel as if they too need to lose weight.
If it isn't bad enough that the media only shows fashion models who are much smaller than most of the women in our society anyway, the new trend is for the images of these women to be digitally retouched and airbrushed so as to make them appear even smaller than they are in real life. Not only
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