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Staying off social media for 1 week can have this wonderful benefit for you

Social media is especially dangerous for people with low self-esteem.

Women who quit social media had a better attitude towards their bodies [iStock]

Researchers from York University in Toronto conducted an analysis that showed that just a week of break from using social media can have a beneficial effect on young women's self-esteem and positive attitude towards their bodies.

Participants who took part in the study observed significant improvement in their mental condition after a week.

Young women using social media notice that much of the content presents unattainable beauty standards: slim waists, round buttocks and slim legs. They know this, but they still strive to meet these high and often impossible beauty standards.

Women have to be perfectly slim, well-groomed and athletic, they should develop their passions and find fulfillment in their professional and private lives. Social media still pays less attention to those who present different canons of beauty or a different approach to life.

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For a long time, psychologists have been warning that social media can lower self-esteem and cause low mood. They are especially dangerous for people with low self-esteem who constantly compare themselves to others. But now scientists have evidence for this.

Scientists from York University in Toronto decided to look at the phenomenon. In the study, which was published on the scientific website ScienceDirect, 66 female students were divided into two groups. One group used social media as normal, while the other had to give up social media for a week.

After a week off, women who quit social media had a better attitude towards their bodies. This effect was particularly strong among women who most strived for the ideal slim figure. Their mental condition has improved significantly.

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Although owners of social media platforms have access to this type of publications, they do not take sufficient steps to improve the situation. Various fashions are still trending on social media, e.g. the "waist challenge," which involves having a waist so slim that you can wrap it in one hand and drink water from a bottle in your hand; or "thigh gap," which refers to slim legs with a clearly marked space between the thighs.

Meta, the owner of Facebook and Instagram, announced in January that it would hide inappropriate content from teenagers - as long as they disclosed their real age.

However, regulations often fall short of their intended purpose, and analysis by Reset found that up to 30% of inappropriate content is removed. Reports also show that TikTok, which particularly attracts young people, removes this type of content the least.

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This article was originally published on Onet Woman.

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