Our world is flooded with messages in the media about how we should look, act, dress, think and believe. Without alternative role models that challenge the media stereotype, we are often left with just the media’s messages of how we should look and be.
Some of these messages include:
Things you and your friends can do:
Following the food pyramid is an awesome model for healthy eating! Here are some tips!
- Being thin is not the same as being healthy. There are good and bad ways to lose weight. Some people match the body stereotypes the media portrays but are actually unfit and not healthy at all.
- Lose weight healthily. Healthy weight loss happens when you reduce your overall calories and increase exercise (while still keeping your diet balanced).
- Ignore ‘fads’ or ‘quick-fix’ options. For a healthy weight long-term, you have to eat a balanced healthy diet and exercise regularly for the rest of your life.
- Inform yourself. Get good info about health and nutrition from public health organisations, such as the Ministry of Health and District Health Boards, not from people who market ‘revolutionary’ diet plans.
- Seek advice first. Any confusion over nutrition or major changes to your diet should first be discussed with your G.P. or practice nurse.
- Make long-lasting lifestyle changes. Dieting rather than eating a balanced diet and exercising can have negative consequences, such as gaining more weight when the diet stops, holding onto weight, cravings, guilt and disappointment, and can even lead to eating disorders.
Many people (both guys and girls) engage in unbalanced eating behaviours for a whole variety of reasons. Some reasons include having poor self-esteem, poor body image, high expectations and social pressure to look a certain way, as well as poor coping strategies for dealing with stress, low mood and anxiety.
On the extreme end, these behaviours are described as eating ‘disorders’. In these cases, unbalanced eating can be extremely harmful to the body and sometimes deadly.
Although it can be hard to break these habits, it is possible with the right support, to return to balanced eating habits.
Unbalanced eating habits include...
I think I need help.
Who can hook me up with support?There are people out there who can help you to be happy and healthy, build up your self-esteem and confidence, have balanced eating and exercise habits and cope with stress and overwhelming emotions.
Exercise has HUGE benefits not just for our body, but for our mind and our mood too!
Tips for making exercise fun
It’s possible to enjoy physical activity just for fun, without worrying about doing enough, being competent or losing weight! Here’s how:
Tips for healthy exercising