Experts say weight loss ads influence eating disorder risks, symptoms

Focus at Four 7/6/31
Published: Jul. 6, 2021 at 5:24 PM CDT
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BRYAN, Texas (KBTX) - Pinterest is now banning advertisements related to weight loss to prevent encouraging unhealthy or disordered eating habits.

According to the National Library of Medicine, the COVID-19 pandemic has likely increased eating disorder risks and symptoms.

“It’s been actually remarkable, in the influx of patients that we have seen coming for care and we really believe that to be a function of so much of the underlying emotional distress that has happened during this time with a pandemic, sort of reflecting itself in on really unhealthy eating behaviors,” Allison Chase, the regional clinical director of the Eating Recovery Center, said.

Chase says the weight loss ads are the greatest problems, as the ads are often just quick fixes.

She also cited sitting at home on social media during the pandemic as a trigger for social comparison.

“We really want to address the underlying emotional piece because that’s really at the core of it, so seeking professional help is really important,” Chase said.

To watch the full interview, click on the video player above.

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