Mirror, mirror on the wall, who’s the skinniest of them all? Scary skinnies must have been in a deep sleep like Snow White during the years that health organizations were speaking out against super thin models and how Hollywood and the fashion world sell images to women that harm their self-esteem. It’s been said that these images encourage women and girls to engage in unhealthy dietary habits as they come obsessed with being as thin. This behavior often can lead to serious eating disorders.
Have we learned nothing from the Karen Carpenter story? Karen’s obsession with being thin developed into an eating disorder that cost her life. Her heart became so weakened by this abuse that she died at an early age.
Celebrities suspected of having eating disorders are a regular feature on gossip mags and on TV and it’s getting to be almost like a celeb should go on a crash diet and get down to 85 pounds just for publicity. I wouldn’t say this except I can’t help noticing how formulaic the phenomenon has become.
A previously healthy looking gal will suddenly appear somewhere with bones sticking out everywhere. What’s particularly amazing is that the clothes they choose to appear in this scary condition seem to be selected to intentionally exhibit every bone in their bodies, like dresses with no backs, or skimpy bathing suits.
This is practically a guaranteed way to end up on the front cover of some rag with a headline like IS AN EATING DISORDER THREATENING THIS CELEBRITY’S LIFE. The press will come out in droves for interviews and the celebrity will deny it at first. Late night comedians will use the whole thing as fodder for their jokes. After this scenario plays itself out, often accompanied by speculation that the weight loss may be caused by drug abuse, the celebrity in question will admit to having an eating disorder and then enter a rehab.
Mary-Kate Olsen was one who went through all of the above steps. She and her twin sister spoofed the issue on Saturday Night Live, with Ashley posing as a photographer shouting at her sister: “You’re too skinny. Eat a sandwich.” OK, but it’s not really funny.
Now we’re seeing a new bunch like Lindsay Lohan, Hilary Duff and Nicole Richie
I don’t understand why actresses would be pressured to be so skinny that a mild breeze can blow them across the street. Hilary Duff, for example, looked much better when she was Lizzie McGuire than she does now. At a respectable weight, she looked as cute as a button and she had a hit show. She credits her drastic weight with cutting out pasta, rice and bread as well as increasing exercise. Of course, she denies any eating disorders.
Regular people fall into several categories on this issue:
They think it’s sad that the industry puts this kind of pressure on its talent, forcing these people to fall prey to eating disorders like anorexia and bulimia, as well as promoting unhealthy role models for young girls everywhere.
Others think the women have a choice and probably can afford to hire a nutritionist to make sure that they are eating right while maintaining a weight that is normal for them. Most people I’d guess don’t think any job is worth developing a life-threatening eating disorder.
Still others admire the super thin so much that they seek to copy it by dieting recklessly, and it has been reported that an alarming new trend has developed where people share information on the internet on how to maintain their eating disorders.
Personally, if friends and family members were telling me that my head looked too big for my body, and my ribs were sticking out in a most unhealthy manner, even if I thought I looked good, I hope that I would have enough sense to see a doctor right way.
I’ve never really had a desire to be super skinny. The few times I’ve been underweight in my life occurred because of illness. I have experimented with a few fad diets, like that grapefruit diet where you can eat the meat you want. I love steak and burgers so that was great for the steak part, but the burger is no good to me without a bun! Fad diets don’t produce long-lasting results and some of them tell you to totally sacrifice food groups that you are supposed to at least have a little of. I’ve always favored the counting calories and increasing exercise method as the best way of dealing with weight loss.
As for role models and looks I’ve admired, in my opinion, voluptuous women are really more attractive than toothpicks.
I really hope I’m not right and that these celebrity eating disorders are not really crash diets gone bad. Celebrities can afford the rehab costs while the kids copying them probably can’t.