To what extent does the media cause anorexia?Everyday, you see models, plastered on buses, on commercials and in newspapers. With models influencing our daily lives, people do think about them. They encourage you to buy a certain product and part with your money. It is mostly slender women and athletic, V-shaped muscular men who are headlining advertisements. These bodies are meant to reflect an average type, but in fact is the complete opposite. With these images everywhere, are people pressured to attain the same figure? And with the inaccurate portrayal of a average body, and normalising it, could it be the root of eating disorders?First of all, what is anorexia? It’s is the most common eating disorder. It is often referred to simply as anorexia, is an eating disorder. Its symptoms are low weight, fear of gaining weight, and a strong desire to be thin, resulting in food restriction. It is the obsession with food, weight and body shape. Many people with anorexia see themselves as overweight even though they are in fact underweight. Some may see it as a lifestyle choice, but it can be serious and prove fatal if not recognized early enough. It can cause differences in behavior, family and cause other mental disorders. In a report conducted by Beat, a U.K based eating disorder charity, it was recorded that around 1 in 250 women and 1 in 2,000 men will experience anorexia nervosa at some point.. Approximately 90% of the affected are women between the ages of 12 and 25. Initially, it was found mostly in upper class families, but now it is spread across all genders, ages, ethnic and racial groups. The treatment for anorexia nervosa usually involves a combination of psychological therapy and supervised weight gain. It’s important for a person with anorexia to start treatment as early as possible to reduce the risk of serious complications, where fatality can occur. Serious side effects can arise if the illness becomes severe. Common yet dangerous symptoms are abnormal blood counts, elevated liver enzymes, fatigue, seizures and dizziness or fainting. Osteoporosis,a disease that results in the loss of bone calcium, is also typical. It is in which the density and quality of bone are reduced. As bones become more porous and fragile, the risk of fracture is greatly increased.Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat are arguably the most image-driven social media platforms currently available. People exposed to a high volume of this image-driven network can be at risk for the development of distorted body image and disordered eating. There are 3.03 billion active social media users. Social media users grew by 121 million during 2017. That works out at a new social media user every 15 seconds. With so many users, isn’t the media bound to impact some of them in any way? Your favourite celebrity posts a glamorous selfie and you stare at it. Why could you have a jawline like that? Look at her clear face! Little do you know it has been heavily photoshopped, with her eyes enlarged and her makeup enhanced to follow the standards of unachievable beauty. Without you knowing that, you may want to look like your role model, have the same body when it is impossible to attain. With the inaccurate portrayal of bodies, young teens are at risk of being influenced by standards that they look up to and want to attain. Their favourite celebrities photoshopped to what people call today beauty. Models popping up in people’s feeds, models who life a lifestyle that is extreme but needed to make it in such an industry. They have to workout and diet, and watch what they are eating. The vast majority of teens do not have to worry about following a similar regime. They don’t need to worry about what they can and can’t eat or if they should go out with their fellow friends to the local fast food place down the road. There’s a scary reality in the modeling industry: most models are unhealthily underweight.A recent study from Dream Models, a modeling management agency, revealed that out of 3,000 models from leading agencies that were polled, a whopping 94% were at an unhealthy body mass index of less than 18.5. The average woman has a BMI of 26.5. The average BMI of a male is 26.6. People may feel they are so different to what is seen on TV and the models plastered in the shopping mall. It is very true, but the people they see are in fact underweight. An underweight person is a person whose body weight is abnormally low to be healthy. Underweight people have a body mass index (BMI) of under 18.5. And these are the models who see everywhere, in the newspaper, on buses, in magazines, in your favourite clothing shop and even on the back of a lavatory! This could support that media is contributing to anorexia in people.But what about the other viewpoint? Is it only just media that is the root of an eating disorder? This goes for every mental illness, that they are caused by a combination of genetic, biological, psychological, and environmental factors. Stress can affect anyone on a daily basis. Stress is normal, to a certain extent as many deal with each and there is no link to race or ethnicity. Stress is the body’s reaction to any change that requires an adjustment or response. The body reacts to these changes with physical, mental, and emotional responses. Feelings of being stressed or overwhelmed can trigger disordered eating behaviors, which are used as a coping mechanism. When people feel overwhelmed, it is naturally try to find ways to alleviate these uneasy feelings. For some, drawing, writing, or just doing something you love can help you calm down. Yoga or meditation is scientifically prove to help, as well as increase cardiovascular health. For others, binge-eating or restricting calories becomes a way of dealing with the stress. It can be caused from peer pressures to have the ‘perfect body type.’ Feelings of shame and guilt about yourself and your image can cause a cycle of stress. This is in the absence of a positive outlet. Some people with eating disorders say they feel smothered in overprotective families. Others feel abandoned, misunderstood, and alone. With the feeling of no one to turn to, individuals may seek to other vents. Research also indicates that families with a member struggling with a eating disorder tend to be overprotective and focused on success. There is a high bar on success which may be hard to attain. Studying and schoo; can be an issue, with parents straining for a child to get the best grades. A sport, in which the parent strive for their child to do the best, win all the competitions. Many children from these kinds of families try to achieve the appearance of success by being thin and attractive, even if they do not feel successful.Sometimes appearance-obsessed friends or romantic partners create pressure that encourages eating disorders. examples include sorority houses, dance companies and school cliques. Being under the influence of people you trust and confide in may cause you to act like them. For example if your best friends likes a certain TV show might convince you to watch it too. This is a variable. What’s the difference with an eating anorexia? Maybe your friend in english class was trying a new diet, or the boy you sit next to was trying to become vegan. All these ways to try and become healthy to result in something… not healthy. Body image distress may especially affect those suffering from eating disorders. This is because people with eating disorders also have a tendency to place a high value on their body shape and weight when dictating their own self-worth. However, it should be noted that the majority of people with body image concerns or body image dissatisfaction do not have eating disorders, and some individuals with eating disorders do not have body image concerns. Negative body image can also develop in relation to obesity,, scars, visible facial or body differences, disability, body changes related to medical procedures, or disease. There could be a mole on your face or you could have severe acne, which could cause you to lose confidence in yourself. Singling out things that make you different to others may make you feel disheartened, as you don’t fit in. Anorexia is a compelling lust to be thin. Men and women of any age can get anorexia, but it’s most common in young women and typically starts in the mid-teens. Many factors go into the development of anorexia. Social media exposure can certainly play a role, but it is not going to be the sole cause of an individual’s disordered eating. A combination of biological, psychological, and environmental components or triggers all contribute to a child’s mental health. Media does play a big role in anorexia, but is not the only cause. The pressure to be perfect, or please your parents, to let stress out can all contribute to anorexia. Spending time on social media such as Instagram and Snapchat can be a way for people to communicate with friends and read local news. However, research shows that too much social media can take a toll on an individual’s body image and mental health. You cannot rule out a main cause for anorexia, as each and every person is different. We can see this from family, stress and anxiety. An individual may have gone through something in their life that no one else has. Everyone is different.