Auburn Riverside Student Voice

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Society shapes teen summer body insecurities

Many+feel+as+if+in+order+to+get+in+shape+they+cannot+eat+certain+foods+they+really+enjoy.+These+foods+include+junk+foods+such+as+Nabisco+Oreos.
Many feel as if in order to get in shape they cannot eat certain foods they really enjoy. These foods include junk foods such as Nabisco Oreos.

Many feel as if in order to get in shape they cannot eat certain foods they really enjoy. These foods include junk foods such as Nabisco Oreos.

PHOTO BY CHLOE KNOX

PHOTO BY CHLOE KNOX

Many feel as if in order to get in shape they cannot eat certain foods they really enjoy. These foods include junk foods such as Nabisco Oreos.

Chloe Knox, Staff Reporter

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With summer rapidly approaching, many feel as if they need to get their “summer-bodies” ready. Eating less, working out more—it’s a whole process of how to feel comfortable in a bathing suit. Society has set an ideal image of what you should look like to go shirtless, whether you’re a guy actually shirtless, or a girl in a bikini top.

As if people aren’t self-conscious enough about their bodies and wearing a bathing suit, society judges people if they aren’t stick-skin, models with an eight-pack. Girls are “beautiful” when they have a toned stomach and a thigh gap, and boys are “hot” when they have abs and big biceps. But why is that?

With obesity becoming an ever-growing problem, we are quick to judge someone based on their appearance. According to psychologicalscience.org, psychologists Janine Willis and Alexander Todorov from Princeton University, said that it only takes a tenth of a second for someone to judge you based on your face. They also say that further exposure to that person doesn’t really alter that first impression. So now imagine if they saw more than just your face, and decided that you were “too fat” to associate with.

Being told to “be comfortable with your body” or to “be confident” isn’t going to help you any if you have society weighing you on an imaginary scale that already has bags of sugar on it. So you may feel comfortable, or proud with how far you’ve come losing weight, but the people around you don’t know that, and when judging, they could care less.

Stores and businesses take advantage of the idea of a “summer body” and advertise diet plans, exercise equipment and even exercise clothes. “Buy our stuff and you’ll be a skinny ‘gorgeous’ model in less than 30 days!” Because of course, losing 20 pounds in a month is the best way to feel good about yourself.

Long story short, there’s something each and every one of us could be doing to be healthier. Maybe it’s skipping dessert at lunch and instead having an apple. Maybe it’s getting up at the crack of dawn to go on a run, while still getting adequate sleep. Maybe it’s buying that gym membership you know you’ll never use, and forcing yourself to go every day after school. Maybe this, maybe that. But guess what? No one is perfect, no one is totally 100 percent in love with themselves; there’s always something we wish was different.

So yes, there will be those who judge you. There will be those who push you down and tell you you aren’t good enough. There will also be those who encourage you. There will be those who pick you back up. And there will be those who are so worried about themselves they won’t even pay attention to the insecurities you think are so prominent.

Wear what you want, eat what you want, exercise when you want. Don’t let society tell you you aren’t good enough to do what everyone else is doing.

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Auburn Riverside Student Voice
Society shapes teen summer body insecurities