Body image and gender

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In our current society it has, especially for women, become the norm to be dissatisfied with one's body and to exhibit an antagonistic relationship with food. This phenomenon has been termed a normative discontent by specialists who study eating disorders (Lowery, et al., 2005; Hoyt & Kogan, 2001).


One constructs this image through a complicated mixture of the observation of oneself, others' reaction to one's body, as well as through memories of comments made by parental and other authoritative figures in the past. The dissatisfaction with this image is often called body image disturbance (2005) and is often measured as degree of body dissatisfaction (Lokken, et al. 2003) or cathexis, which is defined as the degree of satisfaction with one's body (Frost & McKelvie). Many who study it consider it a problem that has been growing in both men and women over the past two-and-a-half decades. However, it has been shown that women exhibit an overwhelmingly greater tendency toward a negative body image. They show this behavior to a much higher degree and on a numerically wider scale than men do (Lokken, et al., 2003; Frost & McKelvie, 2004; Lowery et al., 2005).
Lowery, et al (2005) cite research that a greater portion of women harbor unpleasant feelings when they consider their bodies, and that women's ideal body figures are often more widely different from the way they perceive their own bodies. ...
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