People Using Tinder and Other Dating Apps Are ‘More Likely to Develop Eating Disorders, Take Laxatives or Use Steroids’ To Get Bodies Like ‘Unrealistic’ Celebrities
People who use dating apps such as Tinder may be up to 27 times as likely to use drastic or unhealthy techniques to try and stay slim.
Deliberately vomiting, taking laxatives and even using anabolic steroids is more common among dating app users, a study found.
Researchers found ‘unrealistic’ desires to look like celebrities on television and social media are driving people to damaging behaviour.
And with an estimated 50million people around the world signed up to Tinder the scientists warned experts must better understand its damaging effects.
Researchers at Harvard University in Boston studied 1,726 adult men and women to look for links between their eating behaviour and online presence.
They found men who used dating apps, which may also include Grindr, Bumble and Happn, were between 3.2 times and 14.6 times more likely to have what the researchers called unhealthy weight control behaviours.
And for women the risk increase was even bigger, with their odds rising to between 2.3 and 26.9 times as high as those who didn’t use the app.
App users were more likely to make themselves sick, take laxatives, fast or use diet pills, muscle-building supplements or anabolic steroids to try and look good.
People may be desperate to look a certain way because of ideas of beauty promoted by famous people, the scientists said.
Those using dating apps are especially aware they’re constantly being judged by potential partners in a swipe-right culture online.
‘Studies suggest that the mass media – from television, magazines, to social media – contributes to body dissatisfaction by perpetuating dominant body image ideals for men and for women,’ Dr Tran and his colleagues wrote in their paper.
‘For men, this culturally constructed, dominant ideal is often one that is generally muscular with little body fat.
‘For women, the thin-ideal is often the idealized social norm for the female body although the pressure to achieve this ideal may vary across racial/ethnic groups.’