Body Image & Wellness

Unattainable and idealized images of women’s and girls’ bodies are visible in every aspect of advertising and mass communication. Women and girls are bombarded constantly with messages that treat them as objects of sexual fantasy and exploitation or that demean them. Popular culture promotes unrealistic standards of beauty and makes women – particularly young women – susceptible to distorted body images, low self-esteem and psychological and eating disorders. The multi-billion dollar cosmetic surgery industry poses increased health risks for women, including life-long disfigurement. Researchers in our network are documenting negative messaging while encouraging a healthy representation of female beauty in which intellect, creativity and character trump thinness and physical perfection.

Turning to Fairness: Insurance Discrimination Against Women Today and the Affordable Care Act

 Through our research we have found that women are continuously charged more for health coverage simply because they are women, and individual market health plans often exclude coverage for services that only women need, like maternity coverage. The report provides an in-depth analysis of these inequalities and explains how the Affordable Care Act explicitly removes these discriminations by 2014.

 
URL: 
http://www.nwlc.org/resource/report-turning-fairness-insurance-discrimination-against-women-today-and-affordable-care-ac

Paid Sick Days in New York City Would Lower Health Care Costs by Reducing Unnecessary Emergency Department Visits

 In New York City, 50 percent of working New Yorkers, or approximately 1,580,000 employees, lack access to paid sick days. This fact sheet reports findings from research by the Institute for Women's Policy Research (IWPR) on how increased access to paid sick days would improve both access to health care and health outcomes in New York City. The research also quantifies the savings gained by providing access to paid sick days to all workers, thereby preventing some emergency department visits in New York City.

by Kevin Miller, Ph.D., Claudia Williams (February 2012)

URL: 
http://www.iwpr.org/publications/pubs/paid-sick-days-in-new-york-city-would-lower-health-care-costs-by-reducing-unnecessary-emergency-department-visits

School Policies and Practices to Improve Health and Prevent Obesity

 National Elementary School Survey Results, School Years 2006–07 through 2009–10

URL: 
http://www.rwjf.org/childhoodobesity/product.jsp?id=73923&cid=XEM_205602
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