The danger to health of risky behaviors that go viral – Morning Express

We spend half or more of the day looking at images and videos on platforms like Instagram or TikTok; We invest so much time that we have become accustomed to seeing dangerous behaviors for our health without blinking, we have even normalized them. From these platforms, dangerous behaviors, challenges to see who loses more weight, does more squats or eats less in one day are shown without any shame, and to the rhythm of catchy music. It’s terrible, especially since all this is available to children and adolescents on these social networks.
None of this is new. There have always been media that spread dangerous behaviors, for example, blogs that talked about anorexia and bulimia from a romantic and idealized point of view, and even maintained forums to recruit more girls, mainly, sharing their tricks to get sicker every day and taking them away from reality.
But currently, and more so since the pandemic, videos of girls can be seen on social networks -this affects women more, although it is increasingly affecting the male sector- sharing a diary to eat the least each day, ideas to purge , self-harm… Practically, it’s like watching a series of self-destruction in real time. The protagonists of these videos often tell how every day they felt the pressure to create content and share it on a day-to-day basis of their illness and their plummeting. Of course, do not even think of showing a tit, they cancel it for inappropriate content.
Now that mental health is the new concern since the pandemic, some models and influencers They have wanted to get closer to the rest of the mortals, uploading photos where they do not look so perfect. Like, for example, a comparison of relaxed tummy, which can be slightly bulging, versus when they put tummy in for photos and events. Although the intention is good, the difference between the two photos is almost negligible, so in the eyes of those who see this comparison, what it generates is frustration. Please, that’s not a bulging belly, no matter how hard the model tries to get a belly! It ends up being a pretty ridiculous practice, because most of these women don’t even have a belly or fill it with pressurized air, but the rest of us who see this comparison feel frustrated because we don’t fit in any of the photos.
Another practice that became fashionable, and does not stop, is that the thighs do not rub against each other as a sign of thinness; There should be a kind of arch between both thighs. If they rub against us, it is because we have excess weight and we are not doing things right. If they rub against you, it’s time to get to work losing weight or playing sports, until your thighs create an arch where any contact between them is impossible. Where did this come from? I don’t know, but it is a popular practice that indicates that you are on the right or wrong side of life. That the thighs rub does not have to do exclusively with the body weight, but with the physiognomy of each one but, as always, to the discomfort that it happens to you, you end up adding the guilt for not having that perfect body where the thighs would only rub in a parallel reality.
Another type of publication that adds nothing but frustration is to make a video or a post about what you eat or train in a day. This practice is not exclusive to models and influencers, but it is also something that personal trainers and nutritionists do. At first it may seem harmless, but if someone you consider to be a benchmark in food, sports or fashion shows you what he eats in a day or what he trains, the normal thing is that you believe that at least your routine should be similar to yours. That without taking into account how manipulated that content can be. Why is it not very suspicious, that all the food that day and his training is so perfect?
This type of content generates comparison: there is a tendency to think that there is a single model of food and sport, while both must be personalized and adapted to the circumstances of each one. I always mention it, but for a person who is going through an eating disorder (ED), a perfect day in his diet is one in which he dares to eat that food that scares him so much, even if it is not especially nutritious , while for someone who never eats fruit, his achievement will be to eat at least one piece that day.
It is important that we review the content of what we see. If you follow accounts that make you compare your body, generate guilt or frustrate you, you have to stop following them to preserve your mental health. And if you are a person who can generate a certain or a lot of impact, either because of your profession, because of your fame, take great care of the message you give, and the content you upload, although you can appeal to the responsibility of the other, because you also have responsibility for the content you share. And if you are a father, or mother, guardian, or aunt, as in my case, supervise the content consumed by minors in your care. I assure you that in my consultation I see disorders that began in the most innocent way, went unnoticed because they began as something healthy, eating something better, moving more, all driven by social pressure and ended up getting out of hand. Because it always goes away.
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