Youngsters' biggest worry is their body image    2007-12-04 04:35:01    

Sydney, Dec 4 : According to a recent survey, perfect looks have become the biggest worry among Oz youngsters today.
According to a recent survey, perfect looks have become the biggest worry among Oz youngsters today.

An annual survey conducted by National Survey of Young Australians revealed that body looks is now the biggest worry for the nation's 11- to 24-year-olds, male and female, young Australians.

The figures has shown that 32.3 per cent of respondents put body image in their top three, ahead of family conflict and coping with stress as compared to 28.1per cent last year.

Anne Hampshire from Mission Australia, which conducted the annual survey, said that young people are taking a strong message over good looks.

"What we've found is that young people are still taking on the very, very strong message of the body beautiful, the ultra-fit bodies, in the images they see in the media they consume," quoted Hampshire, as saying.

She further said that young women's level of concern about body image has increased from 28.5 per cent in 2006 to 34.9 per cent in 2007.

"As a consequence, young girls in particular are dieting at very early ages when there is absolutely no need to be doing so," she said

"We need to be helping our young people understand what is a healthy body image, but this is one of those messy policy areas that cuts across health, families and community and education."

"It needs urgent attention, but no one is taking responsibility." Hampshire added.

A Sydney student Serena Fayed, 21, revealed that body issues always come up in conversations with her friends and many of them have eating disorders.

"Friends of mine do have eating disorders, usually because of what they see in the media. They want to look a certain way and dress a certain way. That's fine for them but I don't want it," said Fayed.

"Celebrities is where it starts, but then it comes back to comparing themselves to people that they know, " she added.

The survey indicated, when the youngsters were asked what they value most, family ranked well above financial security.

"Overall, the results show young Australians place an enormous importance on family and friends, which is very encouraging," said Hampshire.

However, concern about suicide fell to 23.9 per cent of respondents rating it one of their top three concerns as compared to 28 per cent last year. (ANI)
© 2007 ANI

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