Impact Of Social Media On Self-Esteem And Eating Attitudes In Young Adults

The purpose of the study is to analyse and understand the relationship in terms of likelihood of social media impacting an individual’s self-esteem and eating patterns and behaviour. The study comprises of 200 participants, in which 100 are male and 100 are females. The data was collected with the help of self-report tools, consisting of Eating Attitudes Test (EAT-26) and Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale (RSE). According to the findings, there is a significant and positive relationship between social media consumption and Self Esteem Issues, and similarly, there is a significant and positive relationship between social media consumption and eating attitudes of young adults. The temptation to portray a perfect picture online, along with continual comparison to others, can exacerbate self-esteem issues and bad eating habits. The correlation between these characteristics and emotions of inadequacy, comparison, and low feelings of worth highlights the need of promoting positive self-perception in young adults and supporting appropriate social media practices.

The Greek philosopher, Aristotle once said, “Man is by nature a social animal, an individual who is unsocial naturally and not accidentally is either beneath our notice or more than human. Society is something that precedes the individual.” But in today’s time, unsocial is the natural, as society stops preceding the individual and technology becomes his best friend. Çınar (2023)discussed that young individualsworldwide devote approximately six hours a day to internet usage. With the prevalent utilization of social media, communication has grownfaster and more accessible. The allure of social media lies in its ability to facilitate rapid communication and the sharing of content, particularly appealing to the younger demographic. Adolescents, especially those aged 12 to 22, are immersed in a technological world from an early age, resulting in distinct internet usage patterns compared to adults and the elderly

For young individuals, social media serves not only as a source of information but also as a platform to “exist”in the digital world. Greenhow (2011) highlights that adolescents prioritize being present on social media over obtaining news or following agendas. The need to establish identity and gain approval inherent in adolescence fuels the significance of likes, comments, views, and follower counts on social media platforms (Boyd, 2008). These metrics contribute to a sense of confidenceand validation, tailoringattractiveness of social media for young users.Social media’s influence on self-esteem and eating behaviours in young adults is a topic of growing concern and research interest. The pervasive nature of social media platforms has transformed how individuals perceive themselves and make food choices, especially among the younger demographic. Research has indicated that excessive or inappropriate usage of social media is linked to risky behaviour, eating disorders, low self-esteem, and body dissatisfaction.

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