Critique of a Study; Muscle Dysmorphia - Excellent Paper

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Last year a study was performed to examine a model for the development of muscle dysmorhpia among male college athletes. The model is known as the Lantz, Rhea, and Mayhew Model and it describes the relationship between pre-disposing factors for the development of muscle dysmorphia and the negative consequences paired with the disorder. The study concentrated on male college athletes falling into three different categories: weight lifters, non-contact sports athletes, and contact sport athletes. The study was to determine which of the expected negative behaviors, if any, prevailed among the separate categories.

Over the past decades the media has been the primary blame of creating body image disorders among both females and males. "Similar to females, men have been inundated with distorted pictures representing the ideal male physique from TV, fitness magazines, and the toy industry (e.g., bulging superhero, G. I. Joe). While most researchers suggest that a multitude of factors may play a role in creating body image disorders (Pike & Striegel-Moore, 1997), Levine and Smolak (1998) are among a growing number of researchers who blame the media's glamorized body blueprint messages for men and women unrealistically judging themselves. (Page 120)"

Men with body image disorders are usually afraid of being too small rather than too large. They tend to have the desire to gain muscle mass at the same time as cutting down the waist line. Along with this desire, an obsession can occur to compulsively lift weights as a way of life. The compulsive weight lifting and consumption of dietary supplements describes the term "muscle dysmorphia". This disorder is more mental than physical and may also be a type of obsessive-compulsive disorder. "In a manner similar to MD, OCD is manifested by obsessions (e.g., constant thoughts about being too small) and compulsions (e.g., repeated behaviors of weight-lifting). (Page 120)"

Muscle dysmorphia can also create...
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