Why Facebook Shouldn't Cause Eating Disorders

girl on laptopDoes anything good come of Facebook? Seriously, I want to know. Every few weeks a study is published, informing us that the social network is turning us into image-obsessed, insecure, narcissistic, reclusive weirdos. And now the latest side effect is that Facebook gives us eating disorders. Fantastic.

A new study that surveyed 600 Facebook users found that more than half felt that the site made them more self-conscious about their bodies. We knew the detrimental effects FB had on teens, but adults, too?

The study also found that spending craploads of time on Facebook doesn't just make us feel like our bodies are unattractive piles of dough, it makes us rethink decisions, as well. One of the researchers said, "People look at photos before an upcoming high school reunion and decide not to go [because they don't feel attractive enough]."

But fret not, users of Facebook who feel that everyone is awesomer than them. I have something that will make you feel much better about yourselves.


These people -- you know, the ones who are making you feel like you're all out of shape and lonely and not far along enough in your career? They have no life! They sit on Facebook all day (more than you!), posting pictures of themselves, perfecting their "online image." What you see isn't the real them. The real them is sitting behind a computer, just like you!

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I'm all for posting/viewing photos of weddings/rad vacays/important moments in children's lives on Facebook -- that's what it's meant for. But when a trip to Trader Joe's turns into a 57-picture album, well, that's when we've got problems. When there's a play-by-play of an outing to the mall on my newsfeed, sorry, not interested. When there are photos of you and your friends at a concert -- while the concert is going on -- I don't think, "Hey, that person has an awesome life!" I think, "Why is that person tooling around on their phone when they're at a fun concert? Is it that boring?"

People who constantly post crap onto Facebook aren't nearly as amazing/successful/attractive as you think they are. And they definitely shouldn't make you feel worse about yourself. Think about it: These people are on their computers 24:7. That isn't awesome, that's lame. You probably went to the grocery store at some point this week, too -- but you didn't feel the need to give a visual dissertation of it, did you?

You're the cool one, my friend. Not them. Remember that the next time you doubt going to a high school reunion.

Do you know people who post every aspect of their lives on Facebook?

Image via Anastassia/Flickr

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