On a daily basis, I’m surrounded by entertaining conversations around food and what constitutes a ‘healthy’ body weight. The media has contributed greatly to the skewed perception of ‘health’ and ‘beauty’ – focusing on extremes and seldom on balance.
Splashed across magazines (online and print), on television, in music videos and especially on the runway, the waif-like I’ll-blow-over-if-you-whisper-at-me body type is revered. On the opposite end of the spectrum, we have advocates of ‘positive body image’ who tell us that ‘beauty comes in all shapes and sizes’, which is great and all, but it’s still not addressing the real problem.
The National Health Service (UK) has warned to be wary of headlines claiming that people can be obese yet physically healthy, saying: “Waist circumference size is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease, so ideally you should be aiming to have a circumference of less than 94cm (37in) if you’re a man and less than 80cm (31.5in) if you’re a woman.”
In other words, studies are correct in suggesting that weight isn’t the only factor in determining health, but being over-weight will make you more likely to suffer other limiting conditions
From: The rise of plus-size models, msn.com
Isn’t promoting obesity as unhealthy as promoting extreme thinness?
While it’s great that plus-sized models are being included in media and in the fashion industry, having a model like Tess Holliday (who is a size 22, the largest professional plus-sized model) should certainly not be a role model for ideal body weight, either.
It’s this crazy mess we find ourselves in where the conversation isn’t focused on measurable health (like your BMI for example), but instead on measurable appearance. The problem is at the source and no one wants to talk about it: if you don’t eat a healthy, balanced diet and lead an active lifestyle, you’re not going to be healthy – no matter what size you are.