Steroids have been the #1 most commonly injected drug in Australia for the past 6 years.
Even more alarming, is the drive behind steroid use being strongly linked to aesthetics. What does this mean? Australia’s use of steroids highlights major body image concerns nation-wide.
The Guardian Australian Edition, released results yesterday that approximately 1 million people in the UK use steroids for looks, not sport. This is a similar story to what Australians are experiencing. Conversations have been prevalent in the media, but nothing seems to be changing.
Growing research indicates that anabolic-androgenic steroid (AAS) use in Australia is increasingly associated with a drive for muscularity and improved appearance, rather than often presumed enhanced performance. A recent study also found that steroid users show greater body dissatisfaction, eating disorder psychopathology and muscle dysmorphia psychopathology.
Dr Scott Griffiths is a NHMRC research fellow at the University of Melbourne and a leading research expert into male body image, muscle dysmorphia and steroid use in Australia. Dr Griffiths gives insight into why Australian’s are engaging in steroid use and shows concerns around the strong link to body image issues.
“Unlike past today’s steroid users are not athletes. The majority of steroid users in Australia, the UK, and other countries around the world, are motivated by physical appearance. Simply put, contemporary steroid users want to look better, feel more confident, and feel more attractive. Consequently, more users than ever are at risk of developing body image and eating disorders, including anabolic-androgenic steroid dependence and muscle dysmorphia (i.e., ‘reverse anorexia’).”
Butterfly Foundation’s CEO, Christine Morgan shares Dr Griffith’s concerns and urges Australians to have conversations and reach out for support.
This was originally published by The Butterfly Foundation.