How can you insulate children from the barrage of images of physical perfection? By age ten, research shows, one in five boys and one in three girls do not like the way they look.
Incredibly, ten is the average age children start dieting. There are all sorts of theories about why children are becoming dissatisfied with their bodies from a younger age, but in Bristol they’re trying to give them the ammunition to fight back, with body image classes being piloted to some primary school children.
Channel 4 News spoke to some of the youngsters at St Peter’s Church of England school in Bishopsworth, Bristol. After six lessons they had taken on board that what’s on the inside of a person is much more important than what’s on the outside. They were very knowledgeable about airbrushing and how the advertising industry markets unreal images to them.
Pressure to conform
One nine-year-old told me: ‘I used to buy foundation, mascara, concealer and bronzer to cover up my freckles,’ she said.
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