Research Paper on Teens with Eating Disorder and the Media

Published: 2021-08-11
1054 words
4 pages
9 min to read
Middlebury College
Type of paper: 
Research paper
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Over the past decades social media has evolved a lot, with new platforms being developed every day. The access to these platforms keeps getting easier as technology advances. Research shows that users between the age of 8 to 19 spend over 7 hours of their daily time over the internet due to ease of access among many more reasons. This has been greatly associated with the different behavior patterns of the teens within our society today. The eating disorder has been a topic of our mouths over the past few years and has highly affected the teens within the society (Dugan, 2014). This is directly connected with the use of social media and the different habits being adopted via these platforms. It is clear to state that social media has been a major factor that has led to the issue.

Research shows that the time spent by the teens thinking of when to eat gets smaller as time flies. This is due to the excessive addiction to their gadgets which keep them glued to the social media. This has been seen in many families over the past few years. Social media being the leading communication platform in our generations, teens spend most of their time communicating with friend with non-stop behaviors to the extent the lack a single minute to spare and eat (Dugan, 2014). A clear example is of my smaller sibling; she is ever on her phone in almost all the social media platforms to some extent my parents threaten to take away her phone if she does not put it down and it.

Eating disorders can be experienced in cases where the family is very busy to realize the forming habits of the children (Sidani et al., 2016). For instance, a family with parents who are so immersed in their work they may fail to realize these habits by their children and without there notice the child develops the eating disorder since he/she has no one to supervise them on when and how to feed. This case has been realized in some families in different parts of the world, especially in the United States.

Social media has been termed as one of the most misleading platforms of our generation. It has been seen to advocate for different things which in the actual sense this information has been misleading the views of this information especially the teens. There have been different social media platforms that have spread the information on how one should look or what one should eat. Some of these platforms have used this as a marketing strategy to get more viewers in their channels a good example of this being YouTube. Users have been using different ideas to get followers on their page and in the process, some users have used eating habits to influence the traffic flow in their channel. People end up talking about their feeding habits and in the process unknowing viewers get carried away by these channels.

A good example is a YouTube Vlogger who has over 1 million followers on her pages. The channel goes by the name Eugenia Cooney ( ). The channel hos clearly have an eating disorder, but she cannot admit to this, so many of her followers who happen to fall under the teens' age bracket are so influenced by her appearance and this has led to serious eating decisions which has affected many teens over the past few years. The host has been approached by many people who have been trying to address the issue with her but she has declined the claim and that she is ok. Such content on the social media has misled so many teens wot poor eating habits (Syed-Abdul et al. 2013). Lack of monitoring of the content uploaded to the social media has greatly affected the teens who can access any information over the internet with no supervision or filters and more specifically without parental guidance.

Too much exposure has also been seen over the past few years and the social media has been playing the major role in how one should look and appear. For example, the ladies, social media has created a mental image of how ladies should dress or should look in order to fit in the social media society. Social media society can be defined as a community which is dominated by how many people like what you post and the followers one has. With this being the main issue teens have struggled to fit in this community by copying all that is trending over the internet which has highly dictate how ones body should appear (Meier & Gray, 2014). This has had a major impact on the eating habits of the teens in our communities. Many teens have had these eating disorders with the claim that they would love to look like some of the famous social media figures which has been seen in so many incidences (Perloff, 2014). The social media has reduced the world into a small community which as exposed everyone to everything happening around the world. Filtering what is right from what is wrong has been a problem for many.

It is clear to state that the media has played an enormous role in the eating disorder patterns witnessed among the teens. Lack of the media's supervision, as well as lack of filtering the productive content from the harmful content, has played a major role in the feeding habits of the teens in our societys. this is an issue worth addressing and differ.


Dugan, E. (2014). Exclusive: Eating disorders soar among teensand social media is to blame.[Online] The Independent Online.

Meier, E. P., & Gray, J. (2014). Facebook photo activity associated with body image disturbance in adolescent girls. Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, 17(4), 199-206.

Perloff, R. M. (2014). Social media effects on young womens body image concerns: Theoretical perspectives and an agenda for research. Sex Roles, 71(11-12), 363-377.

Sidani, J. E., Shensa, A., Hoffman, B., Hanmer, J., & Primack, B. A. (2016). The association between social media use and eating concerns among US young adults. Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, 116(9), 1465-1472.

Syed-Abdul, S., Fernandez-Luque, L., Jian, W. S., Li, Y. C., Crain, S., Hsu, M. H., ... & Liou, D. M. (2013). Misleading health-related information promoted through video-based social media: anorexia on YouTube. Journal of medical Internet research, 15(2).

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