Science and Technology

ANU researchers seek young people for body image trial

Researchers from The Australian National University (ANU) are looking for participants to take part in an online program designed to help young people improve their body image.

Developed by the ANU Centre for Mental Health Research, the ANU Research School of Psychology, and the University Hospital of Heidelberg in Germany, ProYouth OZ focuses on the promotion of mental health in young people between 18-25 years of age.

“Body dissatisfaction is one of the top ranked issues of concern for young people in Australia,” said PhD candidate from the Centre for Mental Health Research, Kathina Ali.

“There is an urgent need for widely accessible prevention and early intervention programs for eating disorders.”

Those aged between 18-25 years of age are being encouraged to complete a screening questionnaire to see whether they would be eligible to participate in the six-week program, which focuses on healthy eating and body satisfaction.

The program includes various online support modules for participants that they can use over the six weeks.

“We expect the research will increase our understanding of how to help young people with eating and body image issues,” Ms Ali said.

“After the initial testing, we’re hoping to roll out ProYouth OZ across Australia so that other young people as well as carers, peers and family members can also learn more about eating disorders and pathways for seeking help.”

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