Is the desire to lose weight at odds with Plus Size acceptance?
A greater contribution from a more sympathetic Media could help the Nation to tackle Obesity Issues
We have a problem with obesity in this country. The average woman in the UK is 5’4” tall and a size 16. Currently 40% of all women in the UK are a plus size. It is also predicted that by 2050 half of the entire UK adult population will be obese (men and women). A grim prediction if nothing positive and achievable is put in place to get the Nation fit, active and healthy. I contend that the Media can contribute to and be part of the solution by playing a more positive role in motivating the Public. The Media has the power to choose the content that is published. It is the Media that can choose to take a more realistic and sensible editorial approach in the use of role models to be glorified within the pages of publications. At all times the message should be a positive one of health and well being. The perfection of beauty is NOT unhealthy, under weight models. Health is attainable and realistic! Realistic and healthy is positive and motivating!
As a ‘starter’ stop using emaciated and anorexic images of women AND stop applauding ‘skinnies’ when they become even skinnier! (especially if they are under a healthy BMI weight level). I was somewhat bemused recently to read in a few magazines about celebrities struggling with their weight. (I am talking about healthy build celebrities within a normal BMI range). One case in point was that of Hayley Tamaddon (Actress and Celebrity Contestant on the ITV Show ‘Dancing on Ice’). Here is a perfectly beautiful, fit and healthy girl. The magazine in question chose to run a story about how she had put on a stone weight over Christmas and was struggling to prepare for the Show. What! How very boring and pointless. Hayley does not have a weight problem. Why make a problem out of nothing. Who doesn’t put on weight over Christmas or any special festival? Obviously the journalist submitting this piece never stopped to consider that the training regime would soon shift any excess weight in double quick time (should this really have been the pressing issue for the Actress).
The numbers of women (and men) who are a plus size cannot be ignored and we all must be encouraged and inspired to take appropriate and sensible steps to manage our weight. We must all be encouraged to achieve a sensible and healthy weight using a combination of diet and appropriate exercise. There must be a concerted attempt to encourage and motivate all without alienating or demonising any community (whether that includes people with eating disorders Or plus size Or just people who manage to adjust and keep within a healthy BMI weight range).
For a great many people the fact that they are overweight or have weight issues is not necessarily down to gluttony and lethargy. True poor food choices and lack of nutrition education does play a considerable role for some. However the reasons why we carry excess weight are as many and varied as the choices on the menu. For this group of people, in particular, encouragement and positivity is the way forward to help them manage their weight issues and get down to a healthy weight level. Being bombarded with images of unhealthy builds of models and celebrities is counter productive and totally lacking in positivity and sensitivity!
The key words here are ‘Healthy weight levels’. We have been subjected to images of emaciated and anorexic models that have been glorified in both online and print media for far too long. Enough is enough. We want and demand to see healthy role models within online and print media (and age appropriate for the consumer market targeted). Seeing images of healthier models is more encouraging to the plus size woman as this is a more realistic target and goal to aspire too.
— plussizecouk (@plussizecouk) January 23, 2014