Take A Bite On This Attention Getter: February 4, 1983 was the day that opened the eyes of America to the view of the damaging effects of eating disorders. This day marks the death of the very famous singer of the time, Karen Carpenter. Looking glamorous and confident on the outside, most did not know she was suffering from Anorexia Nervosa (B5). Throughout her teenage years, she was overweight. In 1967, weighing 140 pounds, Karen was put on a water diet by her doctor. This brought her down to 120 pounds (B6).
Even though she was now at a healthy weight, she was still insecure due to her large amount of celebrity peers who were the ideal, perfect weight. Taking dozens of thyroid pills a day and throwing up the little food she ate, by 1975 Karen weighed 80 pounds. Her body became so weak that during one of her performances in Las Vegas, she collapsed on stage (B7). She was then finally admitted into the hospital, where it was confirmed she was 35 pounds underweight. Shocked by this, Karen consulted with doctors and therapists to do anything she could to return back to a healthy weight.
However, it was too late. Due to the excess laxatives and starvation, Karen’s body could not take anymore (B8). Her death was a surprise to America, unaware of the dangers of eating disorders. Defintion of topic/terms: Types of Eating Disorders: The three types of eating disorders are Anorexia Nervosa, Bulimia Nervosa, and Binge Eating. Anorexia Nervosa: An eating disorder in which a person sees themselves as overweight, even when they are unbelievably skinny. An anorexic might exercise excessively and starve themselves to lose more weight.
Bulimia Nervosa: An eating disorder in which a person eats large amounts of food, followed by dangerous measures to control his or her weight. Examples of this are excessive exercise, self-induced vomiting (purging), and the abuse of diuretics and laxatives. Binge Eating: An eating disorder in which one consumes enormous amounts of food at a time, without the self-induced methods of later getting rid of it. One suffering from this will usually eat by themselves out of embarrassment, and will feel like they have lost control.
I) The way the media affects eating disorders is a serious problem A) More and more teens are affected by eating disorders every day. 1) The National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA) has an estimate of 35 million Americans who are affected by anorexia, bulimia, and binge eating. (F1) 2) Eating disorders affect 3% to 5% of the American female population. (B3) 3) 1% to 3% of teenage girls in middle and high school are affected only by bulimia, while 1% to 4% are affected in college. H3) 4) The director of the Renfrew Center of Southern Connecticut, named Burnell, states that one percent of American women are affected by anorexia and five percent are bulimic. The Renfrew Center is an eating disorder clinic in Wilton. (F6) 5) According to Britain’s National Health Service, over the past three years children eight years and younger have been admitted to the hospital for anorexia. From age five to six 98 have been admitted, and from age seven to eight, 99. (A1) B) With more exposure to the media, more begin to suffer from an eating disorder. ) Dr. Anne Becker, the owner of the Eating Disorder Clinic at Harvard Medical School, did a study after TV was released to the island of Fiji in 1995. After three years, there was an enormous rise in eating disorders, where around 74% of the females said they felt too fat. This culture used
After three years, the students who watched the program did not have an increase of body concerns, while the ones that did not watch it, had an increase. (E2) 3) Sarah Murnen, a professor of psychology at Kenyon College in Gambler, Ohio, did a study on how fashion magazines affected body image. Her research reviewed 21 studies of the media’s affect on more than 6,000 girls, 10 years or older. The results showed that the more the girls were exposed to the fashion magazines, the more they struggled to have a positive body image. L2) C) The media should decrease its amount of influence on having the “perfect” body because more and more people are affected by eating disorders due to the large impact from celebrities, the press, and advertisement. II) Many people look up to celebrities as role models, while most are portrayed as having the ideal, skinny body. A) While many look up and want to be just like them, celebrities are depicted in a way that is unreal and abnormal. 1) Colleen Thompson, an expert on eating disorders, explains, “Many teenagers need a role model and someone to look up to.
Unfortunately, too many of them choose fashion models or actresses as role models, they paste picture of them all over their rooms, and some will resort to dangerous methods of weight control to try and look like their idols. ” (J1) 2) Research shows that the more exposed to models and pictures in the media, the more one is to believe they have to look like that. “This happens even though women know pictures have clearly been airbrushed,” Tara Diversi, dietitian and co-author of The Good Enough Diet, explains, “The rational brain knows it’s not real, but the emotional brain doesn’t. (C3) 3) “These girls are anomalies of nature. They are freaks of nature. They are not average. They are naturally thin and have incredibly long legs compared to the rest of their body. Their eyes are wide set apart. Their cheekbones are high,” explains Kelly Cutrone, the owner of People’s Revolution. This is a very popular company that displays fashion shows all over the world. She then goes on to say, “If we get a girl who is bigger than a 4, she is not going to fit the clothes. Clothes look better on thin people. The fabric hangs better. (L3) 4) “We know more about women who look good than we know about women who do good,” protests Audrey Brasich, a former teen model and author of All Made Up: A Girl’s Guide to Seeing Through Celebrity Hype and Celebrating Real Beauty. (L4) 5) Barbie would be at least five feet, nine inches tall; weighing 100 pounds is she was a real human. (K1) 6) Statistics from a poll conducted by NEDA, show that 64% of adults believe that media is the cause of eating disorders. Out of this amount, 69% are females, and 58% of male’s supported it. F7) 7) Out of every mental illness, anorexia has the highest mortality rate, usually in the form of suicide. (F4) 8) Around 5% to 20% of anorexia patients will die. (H9) B) Celebrities themselves suffer from eating disorders. 1) Melissa Dehart, a former television reporter, suffers from anorexia and once dropped to 56 pounds. Entertainment Tonight has followed her story since 2003. (F14) 2) Kate Dillon, a popular model, admitted she got the idea to purge from watching a television movie.
In the mid-1990’s, she quit modeling when ordered to lose 20 pounds. She only weighed 125. She is now a plus-size model. (F16) 3) According to Beth McGilley, a Wichita Kansa psychologist specializing in eating disorders, trauma, and working with athletes, those suffering with eating disorders need, on average, five to seven years of treatment (K2). 4) The Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders (ANAD0 state that anorexia treatment cost almost $30,000 a month and $100,000 for outpatient treatments.
Insurance usually does not cover any of this. (F8). 4) According to NEDA, out of the 35 million affected by eating disorders, ten million women and one million men suffer from anorexia and bulimia, while the other 25 million suffer from binge eating. (F5) 5) Oprah Winfrey did a huge story about a woman who weighed 38 pounds from Rudine. She dies in 1995. (F15) 6) In 2006, the Madrid fashion show banned any models that did not fall into a healthy weight range. For example, a 5-foot-9 woman would need to weigh at least 125 pounds. L1) III) The press does much research and much damage on the increasing number of those affected by eating disorders. A) The press is a large contributor to the research done on the different disorders. 1) In 2004, the National Center of Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion conducted a poll of different methods students used to lose weight. Nationwide, 13. 3% did not eat anything for 24 hours or more, 9. 2% took diet pills, powders, or liquids, and 6% took laxatives or vomited. (F9) 2) 95% of all people on diets will gain back all of their weight within 5 years. D1) 3) In Australia, 50% of girls and 33% of boys believe they are overweight, even though they are considered healthy. (E1) 4) Out of all anorexia patients, 90% to 95% are women, while the other small percentage of 5% to 10% is males. (H7) 5) Out of all bulimia patients, only 20% are males, while the other 80% are females. (H4) B) Considering its large amount of help in research, the press also contributes a large amount to the number of those suffering from eating disorders. ) Tara Diversi says, “Being overweight reduces your life expectancy by three years, but being unhappy reduces it to nine years. ” (C4) 2) Proven by a recent U. S. survey, 97% of women say an everage of 13 things they dislike about themselves every day. (C1) 3) More than 85 million American adults suffer from obesity and binge eating. (F12) 4) Out of every mental illness, eating disorders contribute to the highest death rate, topping off depression and schizophrenia. (D2) 5) Starvation is performed by almost eleven million Americans who suffer from eating disorders. F10) 6) The serious effects of anorexia are abnormal heart rate, low blood pressure, loss of bone density, weak muscles, dehydration which can lead to kidney failure, fatigue, hair loss, dry skin, and formation of hair all over the body to help keep it warm. (H6). 7) The serious effects of bulimia are electrolyte imbalances from the loss of potassium and sodium from the body, gastric rupture during bingeing, tooth decay and staining from the stomach acids of continuous vomiting, and irregular bowel movements from laxative and diuretic use. H2) IV) Advertisements have a huge affect on one’s eating habits. A) Advertisement has a great affect on obesity. 1) According to research by the Kaiser Family Foundation and researchers at Indiana University, kids 2 to 7 years old view unhealthy food commercials 12 times a day and around 4,400 times a year. Children 8 to 12 watch around 21 a day, with around 7,600 a year. Teens view these commercials around 17 times a day, with around 6,600 per year. (G1) 2) Out of all the ads viewed by 2 to 7 year-old children, 32% of them are about food and drinks, 25% for 9 to 13 year olds, and 22% for teens. (G6) ) Out of all kid commercials on food, 34% is about candy and snacks, 28% on usually sugared cereals, 10% on fast food, 4% for dairy products, 1% about fruit juices, and nothing for fruits and vegetables. (G7). 4) According to the Kaiser Family Foundation and Indiana University study, which recorded more than 40,000 ads, 9,000 were about food and drinks. (G5) 5) “If any parent tried to talk to their kids 10 or 20 times a day about healthy eating, they’d be considered the biggest nag ever, and yet that’s how many bad food messages kids are seeing on TV every day,” interprets Margo Wootan of the Center of Science in Public Interest. G4) 6) Every year more than ten billion dollars is spent on advertising food and drinks for children. (G3) 7) Obesity affects more than 66% of all Americans. (B1) 8) Around 25 million or one-third of teens and children are obese or overweight. (G2) B) Negative body image is greatly affected by advertisement. 1) Dove sponsored a study of 445 women, in which 15% admitted they were worried about their image affecting their jobs, while 20% said they dread about their body almost every day. (A2) ) A study done on 2000 women in the UK proved that women’s first impression of other women is their size and weight. (C2) 3) Cocaine, Adderall, and other caffeine-related diet drugs are very commonly used in order for women to lose weight. (B2) C) Advertisement influences girls in both good and bad ways. 1) Ellen Rome is a spokeswoman for the Chicago-based Academy for Eating Disorders, as well as a pediatrician in Cleveland. She states, “The media reflects and exacerbates the problems.
These teen girls watch and read and observe and emulate. ” (F13) 2) “We do not run photos of anybody in magazines who we believe to be at an unhealthy weight,” explains Glamour’s Cynthia Leive who concludes that the media has a huge influence on women’s body images and should represent women of all different sizes. (L5) V) Discuss the Future (Visualization). A) The rates of eating disorders will go down. 1) More will not feel the need to have the perfect “ideal” body. 2) Without celebrity role models looking flawless, most will not feel the eed to look just like them B) More people will have better body images of themselves. 1) People will have more confidence without the need to be so skinny. 2) More will understand their body weight and shape is fine just the way it is. C) Society will be more accepting. 1) People will not judge others as much because the status quo will include a variety of body shapes. 2) With the celebrities and press influencing less on being perfect, more will accept what others look like. Call to Action: Research more on the causes and effects of eating disorders * Bring about this information of how the media influences this to representatives in your community, state, or Congress * Write letters to popular magazines, newspapers, or television shows explaining how they are affecting society * Spread the word by protesting or bringing up the topic at public events in order for more people to be exposed to this * Get others to help by voting for those who agree that there needs to be a change in how the media exposes the “perfect” body