The latest on body image law

Many researchers . . . have found that the feelings an individual has about their own body image can be influenced by the images they see in the media, including images of unrealistically thin – and photoshopped – models. This can lead to negative health issues.

Now, you may be wondering, how is law relevant to body image? The connection is this: foreign governments have passed laws that relate to body image.

The Israeli government passed the first of these laws in 2012 and the law commenced the following year. The law requires models to have a minimum body mass index (BMI) to work, and also requires disclosure on images photoshopped to make models appear thinner.

The French government followed Israel’s lead, passing a similar law, which came into effect this year. In contrast to the Israeli law, breaching it attracts criminal sanctions.

The government of London, United Kingdom, banned advertisements that promote unhealthy body image on public transport. Similarly, the government of Trondheim, Norway, banned advertisements that promote unhealthy body image in public places.

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