The vanishing model
After reading a thought-provoking post by a fellow blogger Catherine of Silhouette Girl, I was inspired to do the same. This is an issue on which I’ve been wanting to express my thoughts for a long time now. (I hope those who this is meant for are reading. Yes Tanya, you too).
For those of you who think that the model in the above photo has a great body, you’re wrong. Sadly mistaken. It’s not a body to kill for, it’s a body that kills. Being underweight can lead to serious health issues like osteoporosis, infertility, kidney failure and even heart conditions. Even then, the fashion industry insists on spewing out clothes on Kate Moss clones who accessorize with ribs, jutting hip bones, sunken cheeks and listless eyes.
It is a sorry state of affairs as reports state that including the young teenage models, 30% of the models have a BMI less than the acceptable 18. Fashion industry top brass defend by saying that they want to portray a picture of health and beauty and shun the gaunt emaciated look. Honestly, if skeleton models are supposed to portray healthy, then it sure is a scary definition of health.
But the real scare is not the ladies who walk the ramp, but those out there who are bombarded by and bombard on their sisters, friends, mothers, daughters, cousins and media that being beautiful is being skinny. About 53% of American girls report that they are unhappy with their bodies at age thirteen, which increases to a 78% till seventeen. Although anorexia and eating disorders are most common in teens, the disorders can start from an age as early as eight.
Around 15% of teenage girls have some type of eating disorder or eating disorder related behavior and more than 5 million Americans suffer from eating disorders every year, according to the NIH. Instead of pointing fingers, we should first change ourselves as victims of eating disorders admit to being influenced by popular media and peers. This has to stop. Around a thousand women die each year from anorexia. Who is responsible for their deaths? Media? Well, the media serves what the audience like. We are the audience. Unless we raise our voice against this atrocity, the numbers are likely to increase than decrease.
It’s proven that 5 to 20 percent of teens who have anorexia will die for reasons related to the disorder. Their whole lives are laid to waste for some cruel, disfigured sense of beauty. The ‘size’ factor is just a fleeting trend. The dialogue from Devil Wears Prada pretty much sums it up
Andy: Doesn’t anybody eat around here?
Nigel: Not since two is the new four and zero is the new two.
Andy: Well I’m a size six…
Nigel: Aha, the new fourteen.
Again I say, we are the only ones who can change it. Realize that women are beautiful no matter what shape or size. Look around, think of the people you know. What matters? Their size or personality? Educate those around you. You might just save a life.