To: Ms. Rhonda Nelson
From: Sara Beg
Date: October 14, 2010
Re: ENC 1102/Section 09, Core 2/Body Image
Like many young adults of today’s world, I too have struggled with body image. I have failed to
be thankful for my health and have yearned to look like the models whose images are all over
New York City billboards. I would clearly remember when I heard compliments on how I’d lost
weight or had maintained a slim figure, and it would take a long time for me to be more
comfortable in my own skin.
At a few points in time I found myself considering skipping a few meals, and sometimes I
simply forgot to eat breakfast or lunch. I still often have to be told multiple times to eat lunch, or
I will put it off to the point where it feels like my stomach is eating itself in an effort to satisfy
my hunger. It really is hard to maintain a positive body image, especially when all the ads I and
other girls my age see featuring beautiful women hardly ever feature anyone who is probably
bigger than a size 4.
Body image is an issue of today’s world, with obesity and eating disorders (anorexia or bulimia
nervosa, for example) on opposite ends of the spectrum. One cause may be that people these
days are bombarded with images of people who not only look healthy but are lean with muscles
or curves in the right places: in short, perfect. Different body types should be represented equally
in modern media rather than creating an ideal by setting one body type above the rest, however
more research is required to see if this would be a proper solution and if more emphasis on one
body type actually leads to eating disorders at all.
Who does having a negative body image affect?
Negative body image affects millions of teens and young adults, notably between the ages of 13-
24. Although most of those are female, there are many males who also have a negative body
image. In turn, this may lead to an eating disorder, which often results in temporary or even
permanent infertility in female sufferers, illness, and even death. This is a problem that
interest parents, middle and high school teachers, guidance counselors, and those in the
magazine, television, and fashion industries, because their careers involve interaction and
feedback from teens and young adults.
Putting the Problem into Perspective