Brits admit mental health takes a nosedive over Christmas
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It can also be one of our biggest anxieties, one of our biggest worries.
And this, scientists have identified, could be part of the problem.
In fact, it could be the biggest problem.
In the journal Healthy Psychology, betapace parameters scientists from the United States have found that those who are worried about exercise are more likely to die than those who don’t.
The study, conducted on over 60,000 Americans, found that, “Individuals who perceived themselves as less active than others were up to 71 percent more likely to die…than those who perceived themselves as more active”.
This is according to the study’s authors Psychologists Alia Crum and Octavia Zahrt.
According to the study, it doesn’t matter if you already exercise either.
Even if you’re very active, the act of worrying that the exercise you’re doing isn’t sufficient can still have negative consequences.
This will surprise many and shows the power of the mind to both positively and negatively impact our physical health.
This study is particularly pertinent in our modern society.
We live in a world of filtered existence where people show off their ‘perfect lives’ on social media.
The question, in the long term, what could this do to the overall mortality rate of a generation and therefore, the nation.
We are already beginning to see the effects of this.
In fact there has long been a relationship between images in the media affecting those who view it.
A study on the impact of media on eating disorders in children and adolescents in 2003, before the advent of social media found that, “media exposure predicted disordered eating symptomatology, drive for thinness, body dissatisfaction and ineffectiveness in women, and endorsement of personal thinness and dieting in men”.
18 years on from this journal article and we are in a world where social media platforms are full of people posting images that portray unrealistic body images to people who then feel bad about their own body not matching those unrealistic standards.
This in turn can lead to feelings of depression, anxiety which sometimes in turn lead to the development of eating disorders as the young individual tries to match the standards portrayed in the photograph.
Earlier this month, an investigation by a renowned American newspaper into TikTok established that their algorithms send vulnerable users down “rabbit holes of narrow interest, resulting in potentially dangerous content”.
This comes amidst a growing sense that, whilst social media can do so much to connect young people to connect one another, that it is causing genuine harm to people of all age groups.
Post-pandemic, it will be more crucial than ever to manage the mental-health crisis currently building momentum within our wider COVID-crisis.
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