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Food and Depression

             Food is often associated with disorders and the ability to change moods. Certain foods are known to have a calming affect, for example comfort foods, the majority of which are high in carbohydrates and fats. Well-known examples are confectionaries like chocolate and ice cream. Many people, women in particular, will sometimes binge on such foods when depressed or stressed as a way to relieve themselves and perhaps to, for a minute, forget about their problems. Often people with an acute psychological disorder will eat to excess and then purge the hated food from their stomachs by self induced vomiting. This is known as bulimia. This behaviour is sometimes the result of the media's "think thin" image bombardment and this results in a burning desire in the individual to resemble the typical Barbie doll slim women that are portrayed in magazines and on television. Such a distorted view of the human body is not only the fault of the media however. For if government bodies feel that there is a need to regulate the consumption of other harmful substances such as: cigarettes, alcohol and drugs; they should also realize that foods high in empty calories, carcinogens and saturated fats need to be dealt with in a similar manner.
             Junk foods are notoriously cheap and are an economic and fast way of feeding large families. A well known franchise such as McDonalds serves meals that can have over 600 calories per hamburger. Most of these calories come from fat and have little nutritional value. It is no wonder that so many of today's young people are overweight despite being highly self conscious. I believe that if the media can be allowed to impose image after image of unrealistically thin models, then such commercial enterprises should be equally able to not make the normal sized person feel like their only option in the quest to look attractive and to fit in is to become bulimic or anorexic. Unfortunately the idea that overly slim is beautiful is so deeply ingrained in modern society, since the Twiggy phase of the 60's, that it is difficult to reverse.

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