Does social media affect your health?

First of all, I want to point out that I use social media and that there are definitely some pros to it, but it would like to point out some things that I think make social media horrible.

Social media is mostly used by teenagers and we use it not only to stalk cute boys online or for other social interactions, which is what SOCIAL media should be about. However, we also look at tons of pictures of supermodel, for ‘inspiration’, but it actually makes us feel bad about ourselves.

You can find thousands of ‘inspiration’ pages on Instagram, WeHeartIt or Tumblr, on which you can scroll through pictures of Victoria’s Secret models, Yves Saint Laurent bags or beautiful, white-sanded beaches and they are supposed to ‘inspire’ you. But how? By showing you pictures of super skinny girls in Calvin Klein underwear? How can you be inspired by looking at super-expensive bags? Social media gives us a completely false impression of the norm. It makes us feel like the status quo wants us to be tanned, skinny and have expensive clothes, but no one ever talks about how important it is to study, go to university or do what ever you feel like doing with your life. They only give us this one perfect picture of the perfect girl living in a perfect world with an attractive boyfriend, doing nothing but traveling to beaches for free, because they’re models and paid to post pictures endorsing a company’s product.

However, these ‘inspiration’-pages aren’t the worst part of social media – they’re only the beginning. There are so many girls out there that see these pictures of super-skinny models, that might work-out every day or are naturally skinny, and believe they have to be like them – size zero. And this is what makes me mad! There are whole online communities that set up challenges to encourage girls to become less than size zero. If they were doing this as a way to support girls doing sport and eating healthier over a long period of time, then that would be pretty okay with me, but what they’re really doing is advocating that they stop eating – and this can’t be healthy.

All of them want to have a thigh gap, which is a gap between your thighs, when you put your feet together while standing, a bikini bridge or – in my opinion the most terrible one – try to be smaller than a sheet of A4 paper. This is a trend called #A4waistchallenge that spread from China all over the world and it goes like this: hold a sheet of A4 paper in front of your belly (between your breast and your hips) and if your waist is seen, then you’re automatically ‘fat’. Worst of all, these trends aren’t jokes, they’re real. There are teenagers out there that set ‘having the biggest thigh gap of my group of friends’ as their goal and this doesn’t work without becoming anorexic, because it totally depends on the way your body is built.

To all the girls out there, listen, don’t try to be skinnier than somebody else, don’t set ‘size-zero’ as your goal, don’t look at Kendall Jenner’s Instagram if it makes you feel bad. As long as you are healthy and happy, it doesn’t at all matter what size your body is or which clothes you are wearing. Try to oppose the ‘social-media-establishment’, stop looking for ‘inspiration’ and just be who you are. The media in general is a mess: I quote Macklemore: “They want the gossip, they want the drama, they want Britney Spears to make out with Madonna.” They want everything to be perfect or outrageous and that’s not what life’s about. Just be yourself and focus on important things, like education or your personal health.

Eli

Ps.: Eat whatever you want and if somebody judges you, eat them too.

4 thoughts on “Does social media affect your health?”

  1. Dear Eli,

    I really enjoyed reading your blog. It’s really well structured and contains a lot of information.
    While I was aware of the problems social media can cause, I didn’t know about the trend with the A4 sheet or exactly how much of a problem it actually is. It’s rather shocking. I really hope something can and will be done about such trends.

    -T

  2. Amazing article! This was way more inspiring than any instagram post I have ever seen! I so agree with you and I think this is one of the best articles I’ve ever read! 🙂
    -akira

Leave a Reply