Why Do Majority of Women Hate Their Body?

Are you conscious about how you look? A majority of women, an astonishing 90% actually, hate their body. This includes children and teenagers as well. This Buzzle article looks at the reasons why women have body image issues and negative thoughts about their body.
“You are imperfect, permanently and inevitably flawed. And you are beautiful.”
―Amy Bloom
“Mirror, mirror on the wall, who is the fairest of them all?” As kids, we have all read the fairy tale of the beautiful Snow White and her wicked stepmother, who, by the way, is the one assailed with doubts about her body image, and needs a magical mirror to assure her of her beauty. While children may find the story fascinating, as grown ups, how many women can identify with the feelings of the wicked stepmother in the story? Aren’t we all assailed with the destructive ideals of beauty and sex appeal? Do we not hate our body at some time in our lives?

A majority of women are concerned about their appearance, and some are even obsessed with it. What is startling, however, is that a majority of women actually hate their body. This happens to even the slimmest and the most beautiful women. Either the thighs are too big, the breasts are too small, the skin is too dark, or there are just too many stretch marks from the last pregnancy. The Female Body Survey of Great Britain 2001, conducted by Top Sante Health & Beauty magazine, found that 90% of the women questioned in the survey were depressed with their appearance, and 85% hated the shape of their body. Surprising, isn’t it? Not for all the women out there who have hateful thoughts about their body every day. In this article, we look at some of the possible causes that trigger these body image issues in women.

Why Young Girls and Teenagers Hate Their Body?

Our unattainable cultural beauty ideals affect not just adults, but also young girls and teenagers as well. However far-fetched it may sound, this is actually true. A study conducted by the University of Central Florida on girls aged three to six found that nearly half the participants in the study were worried about being fat. Frightening surveys have found that girls as young as five have gone on diets to become thin! How do we learn to hate our body so early? How is the message of imperfection passed on?

Social Standards of Beauty

Have you ever seen a little girl surrounded by adults who say extremely ‘sweet things’ to her such as “Your dress is so pretty” or “You look just like mommy today”. These compliments may be well-meaning, but imagine the impact that these words have on a young mind. While it may be second nature for us to address a little girl by her looks, for a child being pretty and beautiful is now equated as being socially acceptable. As a society, we are trained to look at girls as being pretty, beautiful, and dainty. No one understands or wants to know how smart or how physically fit she is. This is how we see boys, not girls. Girls are told not to spend too much time out in the sun or to run around. They are told to behave a certain way, sit in a certain way, and dress to please.

Human infants learn to recognize themselves when they are nearly two years old. Very soon, with everyone telling them what is pretty and what is not, they learn to dislike what they see. Instead of hearing niceties about how good she looks, if the child is teased for her appearance, especially if she is too fat or thin, then the feelings of body hate grow faster. Moreover, children who have parents with negative body image issues are likely to have it as well.

Physical Changes while Growing Up

The pain of growing up, accompanied by physical changes during puberty, is probably the one thing that contributes to women hating their body so much. Just because the breasts grow bigger, and women start having menstrual cycles, they are given a whole lot of advice, all of which are aimed at ‘protecting their body’ and ‘not getting pregnant’.

Instead of learning to love their body as it changes, they are taught to hide their body under layers and layers of clothes, as though it is something to be ashamed of. Compare this with a pubescent boy who roams around shirtless, happy with his widening shoulders and growing muscles. From being a free bird, a woman suddenly finds herself caged in her own skin. No wonder she learns to hate her body so much.

Peer Pressure and Eating Disorders

“Look, there goes the fatso.” There are countless times may have you heard a fat girl being teased about her appearance in schools. Peer pressure among teenage girls to be slim and compare themselves, dictates body image in a big way. The important part is to ‘fit in’, and if a teenager cannot do so due to norms about the perfect body size and weight, it contributes to body image issues. Not only does the bullying and teasing result in a negative thoughts about her body, it also causes eating disorders like anorexia nervosa or bulimia in teenagers.

Moreover, this is also a phase where women seek the attention of men, who may have unrealistic expectations of a perfect female body themselves. Women, wanting to live up to these expectations, often start hating their body for not being ‘perfect’ for men.

Media Messages

There are times when you wish that you could walk just a mile without being bombarded by media messages on the perfect female body. They are just about everywhere. From billboards and advertisements to magazine covers, television, movies, and even cartoon characters, the scantily clad female body seems to haunt women all the time. All of them, models, celebrities, and other prominent figures, are all sickly thin (almost anorexic), with glowing beautiful skin without any signs of imperfections, stress, or aging. They are perfect, and urge women all around the world to be that way. The hideous misrepresentation of air-brushed women on posters, advertisements, and other media channels contributes to low self-esteem and feelings of inadequacy.

Why Adult Women Hate Their Body?

As children and teenagers we may hate our body, but do we as adults not know better? Why is it that so many adult women fall prey to the all-pervading body tyranny? A negative body image in adults leads to distorted perceptions about the actual shape of the body parts. The woman is ashamed, self-conscious, and awkward in her own body.

Bodily Perfection Equals to a Perfect Life

Women blame themselves for everything. Even after managing (often very successfully) housework, children, jobs, and a whole lot of other activities, they still manage to blame themselves for anything bad that happens to them. There are so many women who actually believe that men leave them just because they have grown older and flabbier. Of course, it does not matter that the cheating men in question are probably balding and have a huge beer belly. This is because women equate appearances with a perfect life, that is what they have been told all their lives, and that is what they believe in.

The Mutual ‘Body Hating’ Club

Hating your body, criticizing it, and finding flaws have become so easy that women now do it all the time. Be it with coworkers, friends, or on online social media, women love to criticize their body. After hearing it repeatedly, women somehow train their minds to hate their body.

How To Stop Hating Your Body

Nobody needs to hate their body. Your body is made to be loved and cherished. To do this, you need to silence all those negative thoughts and insults about your body that come to your mind. Make a firm decision to treat your body with respect. Give it food, rest, and lots of exercise. Most importantly, stop hurling insults at it. Give yourself a break from magazines and other media which propound the ideal body image. Instead, take up some fun activity or exercise that will not only keep your mind away from negative feelings, but also keep you happy. Read about other people’s experiences of hating their body, and change your goal from trying to look perfect to staying happy.

It is not easy to change a perception that has been entrenched in women since they were children. However, when you resolve to love your body, nothing can stand in your way.

How To Stop Acne – The Acne Diet

Skin conditions are not rare these days, especially with changing lifestyles. One such condition that has affected a number of young adults is Acne which means the development of spots. Naturally, no one likes spots. It reduces confidence levels and makes social life hell. But there’s not much you can do or can you?

What Research Says: Research in the field of dermatology shows that skin diseases like Acne could very well be improved with ‘specific diets’. These diets are healthy, fresh and should be consumed on a regular basis. In 2010, scientists conducted 27 tests, 21 observational while 6 clinical. These tests indicated that 50% Acne situations improved with the consumption of specific diet. A study in 2006 showed that boys in the age group of 15 to 25 with mild acne admitted dramatic change by consuming a healthy diet. Successive tests indicated the relationship of Acne & diet.

Acne & Diet

Studies based on population reveal that non-western diets correlate with the absence of acne.

It was duly noted that western diets were deficient of Omega-3s fatty acids whereas the non-western foods particularly in larger parts of Asia & Oceania had Omega-3s fatty acid.

Omega-6s fatty acids are known to encourage pro-inflammatory mediators and associated with the development of inflammatory Acne. Diets containing Omega-3s decrease inflammatory factors drastically.

Outcome shows that a diet rich in fish and seafood decreases Acne to new levels. Also, intake of carbohydrates & caloric restriction control sebum production in the body.

Foods to Eat

Green Tea

It helps fight Acne. After solid research, it was found that applying EGCG (green tea antioxidant) reduces the sebaceous glands. EGCG also reduces sebum production. Drink enough green tea and apply cooled tea bags to acne-prone areas.

Fruits & Vegetables

Our parents have always focused on eating fruits & vegetables; for a concrete ‘reason’. They have multiple ‘benefits’. Fresh fruits & vegetables contain beta-carotenes which reduce skin oils and are anti-inflammatory. Dark-berries, leafy vegetables also help clear toxins from body.

Omega-3 Fatty Acids

It helps ease inflammation which leads to skin irritation (Acne). Foods like walnuts, flaxseed oil, almonds, seafood, fish like salmon & sardines must be encouraged.

Minerals

Zinc & Selenium rich foods contain ingredients that make life hell for acne producing bacteria. Turkey, nuts, tuna, ham, wheat germ, oysters, roasted pumpkin contain enough of these minerals.

Probiotics

They are bacteria that help reduce gut inflammation reducing acne & helping skin. Consume yogurt, dark chocolate, pickles, microalgae etc. regularly in sufficient quantity.

Vitamin A

In the ‘required’ amount, Vitamin A works as a wonderful acne-fighting agent. Severe acne could also clear if foods like spinach, eggs, broccoli, pumpkin and carrots are consumed.

The very basic medicine for Acne is Water. Drinking huge amounts of water helps fight Acne. This is the simplest habit you can follow.

Foods to Avoid

Consuming the above mentioned foods can surely help fight Acne but ‘not consuming’ some foods could speed up the process. Insulin-spiking foods should definitely be avoided.

The main foods to avoid are: Cow’s milk, sugar, high-glycemic food, junk food, fast food, gluten-rich products, alcohol, Vitamin B12 (nutrient) etc.

Nail Care Tips Shared By Beauty Experts

Many people ignore their nails and the state they are in. As part of a healthy hygiene routine, we should take care of them the way we take care of our other body parts. Yes, you may think they are too insignificant compared to others but they still serve their purpose. And in order for them to keep on serving their purpose, they have to be maintained well.

Aside from health reasons, it’s actually simply nice to experience having nice and clean nails by having them pampered and serviced at a good nail spa. You have had nails since the day you were born but you give it very little thought. Well, let us remind you how important they are. The nails are charged to protect the distal phalanx as well as the fingers. There are soft tissues surrounding and protecting the area.

When one of the fingers or toes accidentally hits a surface, the nails serve as a counterforce, providing a sort of cushion to the trauma. The fingers are also used for cutting, scraping and precision grip. Having unhealthy nails could prevent them from doing their functions. There are several ways for you to ensure that you’ll have healthy nails all the time.

One of these is to regularly set appointments at your trusted nail spa. There are trustworthy establishments that offer great nail treatments at an affordable price. Not only will you have healthier nails but they will look awesome as well.

Many beauty experts share nail care tips to their customers. Some of them are listed below.

– Apply lotion at least twice a day. Moisturizing your hands and nails help them become stronger.

– Trim your toenails regularly in order to prevent ingrown nails.

– Make sure to use the right product when you are removing nail polish. Pick a nail polish remover that does not have acetone or formaldehyde. Products that contain these ingredients will leave your nails weak and dehydrated.

– Buy your own nail file. Nail files could contain bacteria. By using your own, you will not get bacteria or disease from another person, or pass your bacteria to others.

– Apply a nail hardener. There are great nail hardener products being sold in the market today. Make sure that you do some research before choosing a brand to buy.

The state of your nails says so much about you. Don’t let other people create a wrong impression about you because of unhealthy and dirty nails. Use these smart nail care tips from the beauty experts themselves.

How Moms Can Create Time For Yoga

The first and number one commodity for parents is time. In fact, time is everything. However, as we venture into motherhood, it will be as though you went into vortex where time as you experience it before is now rare. There would be few moments to stay think things through, or have a conversation that does not get interrupted or even take care of your basic needs. However, one question I often hear parents make is “How do I create time for yoga practice when I don’t even have the time to take a shower?”

There are many surprises, which comes with parenthood. Over the years, I have noticed that there is no time to stop for a while and acknowledge the huge shift that has occurred when a child comes into our lives. Immediately this happens, everything changes but we still move around with our old expectations of how our yoga practice should look based on how it was before we started having children. However, this does not mean that we should not create time for yoga because yoga is very vital to our lives.

What makes up yoga practice?

The first thing to do is to take into account, those moments you do have in a whole day and how you made use of your time. When you do this, it is very important to pay attention to the amount of love and attention that is growing towards your child or children, as well as whatever age they are. This will help you to create a realistic time frame for different aspects of your life, including your yoga practice.

In addition, what is your deepest intention in life? You should ask yourself this question and find the answer to it as well. When you explore your deepest intentions, it will help to inform your actions, which includes how you make use of your time, as well as how you make space available for things that are in service to your life, your sanity, as well as your vitality. However, if one of your intentions is to create a healthy as well as balanced life for your children, with more emphasis on self-love and care, then you will want to place time and attention aside to cultivate this goal.

Mom-asana (Camatkarasana)

This pose is a very unique one. It gives you the opportunity to explore the openness as well as space in your own heart. To practice this pose, you should first and foremost, warm up with simple sun salutations. However, from downward facing dog, inhale and lift your right leg to the sky.

As moms, there are different yoga poses, you can engage in that will work for you. Just create the time and every other thing will work for you.