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GET REAL! Real Expectations. Real Role Models. Real Information.

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Presentation on theme: "GET REAL! Real Expectations. Real Role Models. Real Information."— Presentation transcript:

1 GET REAL! Real Expectations. Real Role Models. Real Information.

2 Get Real Imagine… – A favorite loved one – A break from mirrors and media – What is “self-improvement?”

3 Get Real Goals of this Presentation: – Understand social pressures and how they influence body image and eating concerns – Challenge dieting, fat and fitness beliefs – Provide resources to learn more about disordered eating

4 Get Real Expectations Social pressures to be thin: – 42% of 6-9 year old girls want to be thinner – 80% of women in the U.S. are dissatisfied with their appearance – 50% of girls ages 12-14 are unhappy because they “feel fat” – 25% of men and 45% of women are dieting on any given day in the U.S.

5 Get Real Role Models Media messages influence attitudes and behaviors – 5,000 Ads per day! 1/3 involve appearance ideals – Models are thinner than 98% of American women – Americans spend $40 billion/year on diet products – Any of these can lead to negative body image

6 Get Real Information Genetics influence body type and size – Like eye color and skin color, body size is strongly influenced by genetics – Experiment: Eating and exercising the same amount would not make everyone the same size and shape! – Eating and exercise habits cannot be determined based on appearance

7 Get Real Information Weight gain is normal and should be expected – On average, girls ages 11-14 will gain 40 pounds as they go through puberty – Boys grow taller before gaining muscle, this process can take several years – Some kids grow out then up, others will grow up then out – everybody is different – Puberty and late teen/early adult years are the two most common times of onset for disordered eating

8 Get Real Information Dieting can have serious, even life- threatening, side effects – Dieting behaviors can spiral out of control into disordered eating Anorexia – Dramatic weight loss, phobic fear of fat Bulimia – Cycle of binge eating followed by compensatory behaviors Binge Eating Disorder – Frequent episodes of uncontrolled overeating

9 Get Real Information The causes and effects of disordered eating are complex Disordered eating can arise from a combination of behavioral, emotional, biological, interpersonal and social factors. – Risk Factors: Low self-esteem Feelings of inadequacy, lack of control Depression, anxiety Troubled family or personal relationships Difficulty expressing emotions History of being teased or ridiculed based on size or weight Perfectionism, achievement-oriented Desire for control

10 Get Real - Stay Healthy Listen to Your Body – Think of food as fuel – Avoid extremes – focus on moderation, balance and variety – Beware of the “good foods” vs. “bad foods” dichotomy – What are your cravings telling you?

11 Get Real Help Know the warning signs – Follow your instincts, trust your concerns – Early detection is critical

12 Get Real Help How to help a friend or loved one – Share your concerns in a supportive way – Mention specific examples and share feelings – Express your love and support – Be prepared with resources: Information & Referral Helpline: 800.931.2237

13 Get Real – Get Involved What can I do?? – Remove ads and photos from magazines that promote unhealthy appearance ideals – Surround yourself with positive images and messages – Compliment accomplishments and characteristics before appearance – Use your buying power: write letters to companies and advertisers, shop selectively

14 Get Real “The pursuit of perfection is, in truth, an empty, endless cycle that leaves (us) emotionally and spiritually bereft, as a preoccupation with external appearance undermines inner beauty.” Margo Maine, Body Wars

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