Insights from a recent report on British body image show that a worryingly high percentage of people dislike the way they look, with children as young as five worrying about weight issues.
Emerging body insecurities are, as Liberal Democrat Jo Swinson argued on BBC 4’s Today programme, fuelled by the influx of media imagery promoting unrealistic body ideals. She said: “Parents are very concerned when their five-year-old comes back home and says ‘daddy, I look fat’.”
Ms Swinson chairs the group of MPs behind the national report Reflections on Body Image, which calls for efforts to be made to end discrimination against overweight and obese people.
According to the report, one in five people recalled being victimised for their weight, and most people felt dissatisfied with their body image.
MPs are investigating preventative methods, including the suggestion that weight-related ridicule could become a hate crime, on the same level as race and sexual discrimination governed under the Equalities Act 2010.
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