The World of Lie

Better Body Satisfaction?

Body satisfaction among women might be getting better. This supposition is more than just wishful thinking or a reading from the tea leaves of popular culture. A new analysis of research across three decades found a trend toward less body dissatisfaction in women. It showed no change in men. Bryan Karazsia presented the research at the annual meeting of the American Psychological Association (APA) and explained:

While women consistently report being more dissatisfied with their bodies than men as far as thinness is concerned, that dissatisfaction has decreased over the 31-year period we studied.

The last two decades have witnessed increasing attention and awareness on a body acceptance movement aimed primarily at girls and women. That, combined with increased media visibility of role models who run counter to the trend towards thinness, may, in part, help explain our findings.

One aspect of popular culture that may not be helping body satisfaction is dating apps like Tinder. In other research presented at the APA, Jessica Strubel and Trent Petrie examined the body satisfaction of Tinder users. They found that users were at risk of feeling “depersonalized and disposable.” Strubel explained:

We found that being actively involved with Tinder was associated with body dissatisfaction, body shame, body monitoring, internalization of societal expectations of beauty, comparing oneself physically to others, and reliance on media for information on appearance and attractiveness.

Progress in body satisfaction is difficult to win and easily spoiled.

Click here for more about Karazsia’s study, here for his abstract, and here for his poster. Click here for more on the study of Tinder users and here for the abstract.

The World of Lie, photograph © style3pt / flickr

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August 11, 2016