As a mother and woman I am deeply troubled by our society’s obssesion with weight.  It seems everywhere one looks there are weightloss commercials, stick thin celebrities, and low-fat everything at the grocery store!  It seems so opposite to what the actual stats are on weight in our country! Despite the pressure to be thin, most Americans (around 60%) are considered obese (which is 30lbs overweight).   Even though many of us are far from the ideal thinness that our society pushes, we still take to heart the idea that we just don’t measure up!  We obsess over our bodies.  As a result many women, of all ages, suffer from eating disorders. 

Lately I’ve been doing some reading about supermodels who have turned away from the super-skinny lifestyle and turned to the healthy-weight life-style.  One such former super model is Carrie Otis.  Let is be know that I am in no way holding Carrie Otis up as a moral standard, I am merely bringing to light her journey from super-model anorexic to a happy and healthy size 14, and now considered a plus-size model.  Read here for an indepth article written by Carrie herself about her own journey to conquer anorexia.  Carrie has come along way to her healthy weight.  During  her super-model career she used unhealthy ways to stay thin.  Carrie explains how she stayed thin:

Earlier this year, Carrie told ABC’s Primetime that she would go on a liquid fast two weeks prior to every photo shoot. Drugs and alcohol were also added to the mix, acting as natural appetite suppressants. But just as the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue was hitting the stands in February of 2000, Carrie’s doctors were discovering three holes in her heart, from substance abuse and years of poor nutrition. All this just to be beautiful. Carrie had heart surgery and began making huge adjustments in her life, namely eating three daily meals instead of one.

Other super models have overcome eating disorders.  One such model is Magali Amedai.  Here’ an article explaining her history with an eating disorder and what it took to overcome it!  And we all heard how Tyra Banks recieved critcism when she gained 30lbs. after she retired from her full-time modeling career.  Actually Trya Bank’s 161lb weight is healthy for someone of her height, 5’10”, and build.  If you ask me I think she looks better with some weight on!  Criticizing someone for being a healthy weight? This is just an example of how twisted our thinking is on this issue!

Sadly, not all models are successful at overcoming their struggles with eating disorders.  Ana Carolina Reston died from anorexia at the age of 23.  She was an internationally known fashion model.  Here’s her story.  It is a tragic story.  However, it is no secret that most models starve themselves and use drugs to stay thin.  Many women also smoke to stay thin; as nicotine is a proven appetite suppressant. 

Why are so many young girls and women destroying their bodies to maintain an unnatural body type?  Most women(even super-models) are not naturaly super-skinny, but society has been cramming it down our throats for years that super-skinny is the ideal!  The only answer to this problem that I can come up with is sin!  The enemy is constantly feeding us lies.  He whispers in our ear that we are not good enough; in essence that God’s creation is not good enough.  If this is hard for Christian women to resist, imagine how difficult it must be for the unsaved woman!  I understand that there are many factors which cause enslavment to eating disorders.  Whether is it a woman’s own sin or the sin of others in her life, it ultimately boils down to sin!  I hope this gets us women thinking about the destruction that our society’s obsession with thinness is causing in our own lives, in the lives of our children and in the lives of so many unsaved women everywhere!  I need to examine my own heart and mind in regards to this issue and I hope it causes you to do the same so that we can cause real change in this area! Thanks for reading!  

Footnote:  Here’s an excellent post on what it truly means to be a “model”!  Here’s part two!