Washington: Research has revealed that photos of models flaunting “ideal” bodies dissatisfy people who are unhappy with their physical appearances as those photos highlight reader’s own flaws.

Silvia Knobloch-Westerwick, associate professor of communication at Ohio State University, found the answer through an ingenious experiment that measured how long people looked at pictures of models.

Results showed that people who are unhappy with their appearance will indeed avoid these photos. Unless the photos are surrounded by articles suggesting that they, too, can look like those models.

Silvia Knobloch-Westerwick said, “People should view these photos if they feel like they can achieve this ideal. In that case, these models with the ideal bodies can serve as source of inspiration to improve one's own body shape.”

He conducted the research with Joshua Paul Romero, a former graduate student at Ohio State. It involved 169 young adults who took part in a two-session study.