Researchers from the University of Toronto have found that the active use of social networks increases the risk of developing dissatisfaction with the body and muscle mass in boys and young men. The study is published in the journal Eating and Weight Disorders .
The researchers analyzed data from more than 2,500 Canadian teenagers and young adults. They found that the more time the boys spent on social media and messengers, the more dissatisfied they were with their muscle quality. For girls, risk factors for body dissatisfaction were TV viewing, Internet video, use of instant messengers and video chats.
The researchers stressed that watching videos and using social media can be a way to gather information about training and nutrition, which can reduce mental stress. Video chats, on the contrary, can increase body dissatisfaction due to the fact that children are faced with their own reflection in this communication format.
The authors believe that parents and public health professionals should consider ways to limit social media use and make healthier content to reduce the prevalence of mental disorders among children.