‘Thinspo’ is an abbreviation for Thinspiration. The term comes from combining two words: thin and inspiration. It was coined in the early 2000′s by girls with eating disorders on the Internet. Usually the person who is trying to lose weight will use pictures of someone who is the desired size as a reminder of his or her goal.
When the goal is a healthy weight, this practice can be a valuable tool; however, if the person has an eating disorder, the images used may show unattainable or dangerous levels of unrealistic thinness. The Internet has become a common source of thinspiration imagery, especially on weight loss websites and those that promote eating disorders like anorexia.
Parents are advised to monitor their children’s computer use since exposure to these websites can have a dangerous influence on susceptible young people.