A global survey conducted in 65 countries on the way we perceive our body and appearance reveals great disparities between cultures. Too bad, Westerners have a relatively poor image of their physique!
Being well in your head as in your body is an important ideal to feel in harmony with yourself. But it is clear that some countries are doing better with their image than others. This is revealed by a large survey conducted by Anglia Ruskin University of 56,000 people in 65 countries.
Malta, a country where you are happy with your physique!
Ten “body positive” statements were exposed to all participants, regardless of their country of origin, asking them to rate the extent to which they agreed. Statements such as “I respect my body” and “I appreciate the different and unique characteristics of my body”. And in this game, Malta, a Mediterranean island, is at the top of the ranking of countries that value the body the most and accept it as it is. Taiwan, Bangladesh, and Kazakhstan also top the list of most confident countries when it comes to physics.
At the other end of the table, Australia, India and the United Kingdom turn out to be the countries with the lowest rates of people trusting their numbers. Europe is also in the 10 least confident countries, between China and Brazil.
The study also found that, across all countries, body appreciation was higher among people living in rural areas, as well as among those who were single. “People who live in urban areas may feel greater pressure to conform to body ideals promoted by Western society”, said Professor Viren Swami, the first author of this survey. “People in rural areas can also benefit from being in nature, which previous research has also shown to be linked to a positive body image.”
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Find a positive image, a possible ideal?
The researchers hope these results will encourage authorities around the world to promote a more positive body image. “We are confident that the present work will help researchers better understand the meaning and manifestation of body appreciation across nations, and will be useful to practitioners and policy makers seeking to promote more positive health outcomes. body image in various national, cultural and linguistic contexts”the team wrote in the study published in Body Image.
“Our finding that greater body appreciation is associated with better psychological well-being underscores the importance of developing ways to promote a more positive body image globally.”
Good in your body, good in your head!
Why don’t we accept more physically? A psychologist’s answer
In Europe, we therefore have easy physical criticism, which is detrimental to our general well-being. A concept developed for us by Johanna Rozenblum, psychologist:
“Objectively, there are no beautiful or ugly bodies. There are only subjective visions and biased by education, themselves formatted by society, the gaze of men, the hierarchy, the media or advertising. This is called a bias, peddled by all this, the criteria of what is beautiful or not are invented from scratch by our society. Obviously, we end up digesting this information and these rules, which are based on wind and we apply them to ourselves. The phrase “I’m too fat” comes only in relation to these diktats, which are not the same in other countries…”
But are we doomed to find ourselves “means”, can’t we learn to appreciate ourselves a little more? Yes, retorts the psychologist, but it is a work of society.
“We can already rejoice, the subject is progressing, today we talk more about body positive, in advertisements for example. Icons like Beyoncé, who mix bodies of all colors and sizes in their show also do us a lot of good. What remains is a work of reflection and autonomy of thought for and by oneself, as to what is beautiful “for us”. But also a critical mind to develop further, by stopping thinking that what we see on Instagram is a norm! We can also think about what it is to be beautiful, is it just taking care of your carnal envelope, or is it much more than that. “