Irish teenage girls are "binge dieting" to get bodies like pop stars Britney Spears and Beyonce, according to academic research.
Many girls diet to get bodies like Beyonce
Many believe "crash diets" will help them find love and happiness, a University of Ulster study suggests.
About 80% of girls surveyed said it was important to be slim to attract boys' attention and achieve self-confidence.
About 400 14-16 year-olds took part in the survey of their eating and dieting habits.
It was conducted by Elaine Mooney, a Home Economics lecturer at St Angela's College in Sligo and a doctoral student at the University of Ulster.
In her response, one girl said: "Lads will always go for the skinny looking blonde first."
Many saw a "flat stomach and long legs" as being the optimum body shape, said the study.
More than 70% of the teenagers questioned said they were not satisfied with their current body shape or weight and wanted to be slimmer.
More than 45% thought themselves overweight even though visual observation indicated they were not, while 49% reported they had dieted to lose weight and 38% currently on a diet.
Ms Mooney said the girls knew in minute detail the eating and dieting regimes of celebrities after reading about them in teenage magazines.
Such magazines carried articles and pictures featuring the dieting practices of celebrities and the teenagers regarded the Atkins diet as "old hat" and no longer "cool".
The GI diet was now the slimming plan of choice, according to the interviewees.
Dr Chris Strugnell, a senior lecturer in Consumer Sciences at UU, said: "These results are a real concern.
"This is an important time in the life of adolescent girls and they are not only indulging in poor food choices and practices but, more worryingly, are missing important and essential nutrients at this point in their lives."