Stacey Solomon has revealed her two young sons are desperate to get six packs after being bombarded with images of super fit bodies on the likes of Love Island.
The Loose Women panellist hit out on Monday’s episode of the daytime show at the “pressure” in society to look buff – and said it “scared the life out of her” that sons Zachary, nine, and Leighton, five, were already worrying about their appearance.
Stacey, 27, said that shows like Love Island, featuring gym-honed young people in swimwear, combined with perfectly edited social media snaps were having a negative effect on kids.
She also said even her sons’ toys perpetuated the idea that muscular is the ‘perfect’ body shape.
“I think the pressures are just getting worse and worse, when you think about social media and everybody in Love Island with the perfect bodies,” she said.
“I know that even my children, without the Love Island, without the Instagram, Facebook or whatever, just their action figures are all ripped with six packs, and they look at them and go, ‘Oh mum, how can I get a six pack? When can I join the gym?’
“That scares the life out of me.”
However, fellow panellist Jane Moore argued: “I don’t think of any of the guys on Love Island as having the perfect body.
“For me, it’s imperfect and not how a body should look. It’s how they’ve honed their body.
“A natural body that is fit and healthy doesn’t actually look like that.”
Stacey spoke out as Loose Women launched their latest Body Stories campaign, which is targeted towards men’s body confidence
She said it was only after getting together with boyfriend Joe Swash that she realised men have the same issues with body image as women.
“It’s funny as well because I often forget that men even have these insecurities,” she said.
“When I first met Joe I think that was the first time I realised ‘Oh my God it bothers him about his weight and what he looks like and his figure’ and he goes to the gym every single day.
“He’s healthy – he’s not completely ripped but he really cares about what his body looks like.
“I think there is a huge pressure on men to be bulky and ripped and perfect like there is on women.”
Seven celebrity men agreed to strip off and be photographed for the Loose Women Body Stories campaign, including Coronation Street actor Shayne Ward, This Morning’s medical expert Dr Ranj and Judge Rinder.
Many viewers applauded the Loose Women panel for discussing the issue – and the men for raising awareness of body confidence among fellow males.
They were photographed by celebrity snapper Rankin.
One wrote: “Great to see a realistic portrayal of men in this campaign and thank you for highlighting issues of male body image.”
Another said: “So many men suffering in silence with body dysmorphia and the pressure to look a certain way! Thanks for discussing!”
A third added: “Such an important issue, affects men as well as women. Affects r/ships so often. Guys need to know there’s support out there for them.”
We agree, well done Loose Women.