1. Chris Hemsworth is exactly what’s wrong with the fitness industry – medium. (n.d.). Retrieved November 11, 2022, from

Background: This article explains how Chris Hemsworth is subliminally fooling his audiences. It goes into detail about the true limits of a natural human body, and now Hemsworht and his stunt double are most likely concealing their steroids due to their impressive, but highly unrealistic body models. 

How I used it: I used this article to prove my point that even influencers who are considered “role models,” still hide the truth about how they obtained their success. This will also help me prove that people like Hemsworth don’t really have their audience in mind, but instead try to keep their reputation alive. 

  1. Commissioner, O. of the. (n.d.). Teens and steroids: A dangerous combo. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Retrieved November 3, 2022, from

Background: Steroids can cause both long and short term injuries and side effects to anyone who uses them. Even more so in teenagers whose bodies are still developing and changing. This article also provided the reader with background information regarding the legality of steroids, the specific dangers, and how they are so easily accessible. 

How I used it:  I used this in my causal argument to help reinforce my claims that toxic fitness influencers are recklessly endangering our youth. Even though steroids are proven to be dangerous, these toxic influencers still conceal the truth behind them, and basically just sit back while the teenagers go out of their way and try steroids on their own. 

  1. Connor, L. (2017, October 5). Two-thirds of youngsters would be happy if social media didn’t exist. Evening Standard. Retrieved October 16, 2022, from

Background: This article talks about how most of our youth is immersed in social media, but regardless of how it makes them feel, they choose to still interact with it because they don’t want to feel left out or miss anything important. The author claims that “Despite this (our youth feeling less confident), 56 per cent admitted to being on the edge of addiction when it comes to checking their social media apps on a regular basis.” 

How I used it: This helped in my arguments because by showing that our youth goes against what is good for their mental health, it would be easy for toxic influencers to manipulate and alter their perceptions due our youth’s impressionable young minds.

  1. Digital platforms on steroids – digital citizens alliance. (n.d.). Retrieved November 3, 2022, from

Background: This article goes into depth on how social media apps like Facebook and Instagram subliminally enable the sale of illegal anabolic steroids. We see our favorite weightlifters and athletes with huge followings, receiving attention for the physiques. What many do not know though is that these bodies are not always built naturally, but sometimes by the help of steroids. Once the viewers realize that steroids are involved, they go on a search for any they can find, and because the majority of the people searching are under the legal age to purchase them, they have to resort to illegal sellers or the cheaper, but just as dangerous alternatives. 

How I used it: This article allowed me to show to the reader that although social media is intended for good things, dirty influencers make the environment toxic and a minefield for our youth. I also brought up the fact that influencers use hyperlinks to allow for the easy purchasing of supplements that they have used which are full of chemicals, dangerous to an altering young body. 

  1. Dowshen, S. (Ed.). (2017, February). Are steroids worth the risk? (for teens) – nemours kidshealth. KidsHealth. Retrieved November 3, 2022, from

Background: This article gives insight to the numerous risks for both males and females when they are taking anabolic steroids. It was made to deter people from thinking that steroids are worth the risks. It also provides information on how steroids can lead to debilitating addictions, but also provides strong alternatives to steroids. 

How I used it: I used this in my work to emphasize the terrible health problems that one can face if they start using steroids at a young age. This also tied into why some influencers are considered “toxic,” as they don’t educate their viewers on the dangers of steroid abuse, when at the same time, they are essentially leading their viewers towards the path of steroid use. 

  1. Griffiths, S., Murray, S., Krug, I., & McLean, S. (n.d.). The contribution of social media to body dissatisfaction, eating disorder symptoms, and anabolic steroid use among sexual minority men. Cyberpsychology, behavior and social networking. Retrieved October 16, 2022, from

Background: According to the article, apps like Facebook and Instagram are two of the main social media platforms that have been at the forefront of causing body dissatisfaction, eating disorders, and anabolic steroid use in our youth. Some fitness influences have created a false sense of reality for their viewers, in which they all have to look and act the same inorder to fit in with social norms. 

How I used it:  I used this in my argument to help show that the internet and social media is not always as good as it seems. Sure there are good people out there, but the majority of fitness influencers interacting with our youth are just there for personal gain, attention, or profit. Because they show no humility to their viewers, feelings of negativity are passed around. 

  1. Is social media driving anabolic steroid use? us16.campaign. (n.d.). Retrieved October 16, 2022, from

Background: Social media addiction is rampant, with more than “81% of teens registered on social media.” While the benefits of social media should be acknowledged, the risk of social comparison between each other is extremely heightened. Social media tries to push the “perfect body image” that we should all strive for, which can lead to crippling thoughts of shame and guilt to anyone who may already feel lesser.

How I used it:  This was used in my argument to show that cons of social media can in some cases outweigh the pros. I used this evidence to also show that the main thing driving our youth to go workout isn’t inspiration, but rather envy. Our youth wants to look like and receive the same attention that their favorite influencers are receiving. 

  1. Khore. (2022, July 27). How social media influenced the fitness industry: AFA Blog. Australian Fitness Academy. Retrieved November 18, 2022, from

Background: Social media gives us access to connect with others from all around the world and allows us to  receive valuable information for free. The author states, “Gone are the days where you need to pay for a magazine subscription, as so much valuable content is now posted online for free.” It is made clear that the author is in favor of social media, valuing what it has to offer. Social media has many pros and cons, but the author chooses to focus on the pros, some of which include the spreading of new ideas, the ability to network, the offering of motivation, and the ability to market your name, business, or product.

How I used it: I used this article in my rebuttal essay. I linked this to how although websites can be easily accessible, this does not mean that all fitness advice is free, or that fitness advice is valuable or not. I brought up the dilemma that people face, which is paying for expensive programs to help with diets, or trusting free information online from incredible people. 

  1. Noonan. (2018). Social Media Fitness Influencers: Innovators and Motivators [University of Iowa].

Background: The author of this research paper is highly favoring the creation of social media. The main point of this article is that social media provides the world with either “motivators or innovators.” Because people focus their daily routines around social media, it is no surprise though that people find themselves  believing and listening to every little thing that they see online. The author, Morgan Noonan, states, “A recent study done by Dr. Jonah Berger, a professor at the Wharton School showed that 88% of consumers were highly likely to follow a recommendation made by a micro-influencer.”

How I used it:  I can use the statistic above to show that people are so impressionable when it comes to taking advice from fitness influencers, even if that advice is not good or credible. This was pointed more towards a younger audience because their minds are still changing based on whatever is influencing them.

  1. Paulson, P. (n.d.). Delusions of a dream physique: Influencers perpetuate unrealistic expectations. Spartan Shield. Retrieved November 18, 2022, from,for%20teenagers%20and%20younger%20people. 

Background: This article agrees that influencers are creating unrealistic expectations within their viewers minds. The author states that viewers should know if the influencer they follow has ever been on steroids. He also claims that the Teens end up going on a never ending journey to achieve their dream body, but at the end of the day, they can’t unless they turn to steroids. In the article, David Baxter, states, “You can’t just be 6’8, 400 lbs of muscle and deadlift over 1,000 pounds just by eating food and lifting weights.”

How I used it: I used this in my short essay to help me emphasize that our youth’s perception is easily altered by bogus fitness influencers. This never ending journey is dangerous to one’s mental and physical health, as it is always draining them. If fitness influencers are honest to their viewers, teens would set out with much more reasonable and realistic expectations. 

  1. Smithers, D. (2021, July 6). Bodybuilder Calls Out Fitness Influencers After Admitting Steroid Use. LADbible. Retrieved December 2, 2022, from

Background: Fitness influencer, Noel Deyzel, calls out fitness influencers who have not admitted to using steroids. He has been honest with his fan base, making him one of the most popular and respected influencers on TikTok. The author quotes from Deyzels videos, where “he urges other influencers to be honest, claiming that it is harmful to their followers’ health if they continue to conceal the truth or use their platform to sell steroids to the uninformed.”

How I used it: This was used to draw a comparison between what good and toxic influencers look like on social media. Although he has used these drugs in the past, he doesn’t give any false hope to any of his viewers, and creates a welcoming environment by providing meaningful and impactful health advice.

  1. Steroids fast facts. (n.d.). Retrieved December 2, 2022, from

Background: This article gave a summary of what steroids are, how they work, and who abuses them. It also confirms that steroids are illegal to have without a prescription.

How I used it: This was helpful because I argued that the people promoting and selling illegal steroids are criminals and should face the consequences. Teens clearly do not have prescriptions so the people selling to them would be breaking the law. This was used in trying to make an effort to get toxic influencers to realize their mistakes and make a change in their intentions and actions.

  1. Tedford, D. (2007, October 5). Marion Jones admits using steroids. NPR. Retrieved October 16, 2022, from

Background:  Olympic sprinter, Marion Jones, admitted to using steroids after denying multiple times that she was natural. Her career and legacy has been tainted by her past decision to not be truthful to her fans and the world. 

How I used it: This was important to my argument because I compared it to how influencers of the past were much more open and honest about how they got to where they were, when the influencers of today conceal their secrets for personal gain. I also connected it to how some influencers don’t think about their supporters at all. Young girls looked up to Jones, as she was a great sprinter, but now they have to face the fact that unless they are genetically gifted, they will probably not achieve the same success that she has reached unless they use steroids.

  1. Wellman, M. (2016, February 17). Here’s how social media is inspiring you to workout. The Des Moines Register. Retrieved November 18, 2022, from 

Background: According to this article, social media inspires us in many different ways to workout. The author claims that it is a good source of inspiration for people who want to make a change in their life. It is also mentioned that because there is a community of people doing the same thing, we should feel good about wanting to make a change in our lives.

How I used it: This is something that I refuted because true inspiration shouldn’t be coming from others, it should be coming from within our own selves to make a difference in our lives. When it comes from an outside force, then it is just succumbing to the pressure of wanting to fit in or wanting to look like everyone else. 

  1. Yu, C. (2021, November 18). 7 ways to use social media to boost your workout motivation. Life by Daily Burn. Retrieved November 18, 2022, from’t%20just,full%20of%20positive%20self%2Dtalk. 

Background: The article provides the reader with 7 ways to use social media as workout inspiration. The author claims that the fitness side of social media can help us mentally. He also claims, “Social media doesn’t just build your physical fitness, it can help improve your mental muscles too,” and  “that social media is full of positive content.”

How I used it: I used this in my rebuttal because although social media has its good parts, what our youth mainly sees on the fitness side of the internet is unwelcoming and damaging to their self-esteem. So many teens, kids, and even adults have been bullied or mistreated in the fitness community for either being “weak,” “skinny,” or “fat.”

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