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Old 3rd February 2010   #1
Chad
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Join Date: August 2005
Posts: 352
Default Nine in 10 girls pressued to starve (article)

It's never hard to remember the importance of a site like this when you come across articles such as the following, which reveals that nine out of 10 girls "feel pressured by the fashion and media industries to be skinny."

http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE6104Q420100201

Here's the tragic text:

Quote:
American teen girls feel pressure to be thin

Feb 1, 2010 1:18pm EST

NEW YORK (Reuters Life) - Almost nine in 10 American teenage girls say they feel pressured by the fashion and media industries to be skinny and that an unrealistic, unattainable image of beauty has been created, a poll showed on Monday.

The online survey of 1,000 girls aged between 13 and 17 for the Girl Scouts of the USA found that three quarters said they would be more likely to buy clothes that they see on real-size models than on women who are skinny.

But three out of four girls said that fashion is "really important" to them.

"The fashion industry remains a powerful influence on girls and the way they view themselves and their bodies," said Kimberlee Salmond, senior researchers at the Girl Scout Research Institute.

"Teenage girls take cues about how they should look from models they see in fashion magazines and on TV and it is something that they struggle to reconcile with when they look at themselves in the mirror," she said.

More than 80 percent of teen girls said they would rather see natural photos of models rather than pictures that had been digitally altered or enhanced...

One in three girls said they have starved themselves or refused to eat in an effort to lose weight...More than a third said they know someone who has been diagnosed with an eating disorder.

These statistics are horrifying. If one in three girls admits to starving, imagine how many actually are. More than a third know someone with an eating disorder? This is appalling. And when nine out of 10 girls feel pressured to be underweight, something is very, very wrong.

It's not at all surprising that fashion and the media influence these girls so much. These industries are precisely the cause of these eating disorders and the pressure to starve. They are directly responsible.

What is encouraging, though, is that three-quarters of the girls want to see images of fuller-figured models, images that aren't airbrushed. So where are these images - the images that girls are looking for? This study proves that it would be a lie to say that girls want to see anorexic-looking models and celebrities. They don't. An overwhelming majority of them want to see plus-size models.

So why doesn't the fashion industry give them what they want? Why doesn't the media create the more natural images that they know would curb eating disorders, improve body image, and sell clothing just as well (or better) than the skeletal pictures that they current produce?

It's way past time for the fashion/media empire to stop pushing emaciation, and to embrace timeless, full-figured beauty.
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Old 3rd February 2010   #2
Maureen
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Default Re: Nine in 10 girls pressued to starve (article)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chad
So why doesn't the fashion industry give them what they want? Why doesn't the media create the more natural images that they know would curb eating disorders, improve body image, and sell clothing just as well (or better) than the skeletal pictures that they current produce?

I am sick almost to death of people fomenting and making money from others' insecurity and pain. The diet-medical industrial complex is continuously making over natural traits and phenomena (remember "nighttime mouth" and "cellulite?") as pathologies that can only be cured by products made and marketed by the same diet-medical industrial complex.

The pathologizing of certain weight categories is growing, and the goalposts are in perpetual motion; one woman has written that, in preparation for surgery, she was weighed several times in one day, and each time, the number on the scale was different, varying by as much as 15 pounds. And yet, we're told that it is that number that permits or denies us a stamp of approval from the very people who want us to be sad, miserable, hungry, self-hating -- because that's how they make their living.

I am encouraged that this study shows that girls are hungry (!) for images of healthy, fuller-figured womanhood. What will it take to feed them these visions of health and radiant beauty? When are we grown-ups going to get mad enough to stop giving our money to companies that enrich themselves, parasite-like, at the cost of our and our children's well-being? How far will we let it go before we demand a halt?
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Old 5th February 2010   #3
Graham
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Default Re: Nine in 10 girls pressued to starve (article)

I know that this site discourages any political discussions, therefore I'm going to stick strictly to the size-acceptance angle of this story.

The weight-epidemic hysteria has gotten to the point that the gym-crazed First Lady has put her own daughters on a starvation regimen.

The info appears in this piece at the Huffington Post, which is thankfully critical of the First Lady's actions. I note the source because HuffPo is an acknowledged left-wing site, so for it to come out against what is practically child abuse (denying young girls food) is encouraging:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/laura...r_b_444707.html

The article makes some important points even outside of the debate about what Mrs. Obama has done:

Quote:
In the eating disorders world, putting any child on a diet is not only unacceptable but appalling.

In the eating disorders world, a father referring to his child as "chubby" and commenting on her eating habits is not only frowned upon it is reviled.

In the eating disorder world a mother who felt her children were "perfect" should not be corrected by a doctor who points to the children's weight as altering that.

In the eating disorders world it is well-known and embraced that healthy children rapidly gain weight as they approach puberty.

In the eating disorders world it is understood that dieting is an unhealthy behavior, that healthy weight is whatever one's body ends up with

As I said, this is an issue that transcends politics, and would be just as appalling if the family in question were on the Right as on the Left.

I placed the link in this thread because it must be considered in light of the Reuters article which reveals that over 90% of girls are being pressured to starve. As that article notes:

Quote:
Other top influences on body perceptions, aside from celebrities and models, are peers, friends and parents

How tragic that such a visible family as the First Family offers an example of this abusive behaviour toward young girls.

The forced starvation of the nation's daughters must end. Now.
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Old 26th February 2010   #4
Meredith
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Default Re: Nine in 10 girls pressued to starve (article)

How bad is this crisis? Worse than you can imagine.

Fully half of all of the SIX-YEAR-OLDS in Britain have now been brainwashed into thinking that they're "over"weight.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/c...be-thinner.html

Six-year-olds. Unimaginable.

This is the inevitable result of "weight epidemic" propaganda. The diet-exercise and starvation-torture industries are bringing up generations of victims who will be enslaved to those industries' products, when there is nothing wrong with them in the first place.

Note this passage:

Quote:
The mother of six-year-old Saffron Davis, who opted for the thinnest image, said the attention given to size zero models was responsible for making normal children think they're "over"weight.

She told The Sun: "Saffron looks through my magazines and says her legs are f**. There is a worrying culture of girls thinking they're "over"weight from a very young age."

Last week it was reported that five-year-old Lucy Davis, 3st 9lbs, had been classed as "unhealthily f**" by NHS doctors in Poole, Dorset because she was one per cent over her "ideal" Body Mass Index.

1. Note the source of the problem: the girl looking through her mother's magazines. Let the denials end. For once and for all, people need to realize that, yes, underweight models ARE causing eating disorders, and ARE destroying the body image of girls and young women.

2. Knowing how toxic these magazines are, mothers should at the very least keep them away from their daughters -- and better still, not buy them in the first place.

3. As the last quoted paragraph indicates, doctors are frankly becoming monomaniacal and criminally abusive on this score, like sadists in a dystopian novel -- but it's happening in real life. The BMI charts are junk science, as has been abundantly proven, but doctors still throw them in women's faces. And to call a girl who is just one percent over a target weight on a chart that's bogus to begin with is sickening.
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Old 9th May 2010   #5
Hannah
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Default Re: Nine in 10 girls pressued to starve (article)

Just a couple of short blurbs from this article that I felt worth sharing in this thread.

http://www.heraldscotland.com/comme...riety-1.1024108

First:

Quote:
This week a Scottish teenager was lauded as the next top plus-size model, despite being a measly size 12 against the national average of 16.

It's welcome to hear a size 12 referred to as "measly." People are finally rising up against the fashion industry's offensive use of faux-plus models deceptively passed off as plus-size. The public wants to see TRUE plus-size models, size 16 and up, not size 12s.

Worse yet, as the source of this is a U.K. story, they mean size 12 in British sizing, which is even smaller than U.S. sizing (!).

It's disgusting. I refuse to accept any model size 12 or smaller as a representative of full-figured fashion.

Second:

Quote:
Being able to tip oneself into a small dress is not such a stellar achievement; its not worth any level of pride.

However, being thin has become desirable, partly because we judge character on the superficial and weight is an easy and instant marker to assess. But a thin woman does not look better she just looks thinner. Bones are not beautiful poking through skin.

Bravo. So many size activists still implicitly accept the misguided notion that thinner is better and that full-figured women should just not pay as much attention to external beauty. What self-hating nonsense! Starvation does NOT improve beauty, and thinner women look worse than curvy girls. There is nothing attractive about bones "poking through the skin," and I applaud this writer for saying so.
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Old 26th July 2010   #6
Kaitlynn
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Default Re: Nine in 10 girls pressued to starve (article)

Penelope Cruz may have the best possible solution for this problem.

The Daily Mail just ran a new article about Cruz, and while it is mostly the usual celebrity fluff and not worth reading,

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/home/you...shows-face.html

it does include this amazingly forward-thinking statement from the actress:

Quote:
I would close down all those teenage magazines that encourage young girls to diet, she says. Who says that to be pretty you have to be thin? There is almost a standard being created where only thin is acceptable. The influence of those magazines on girls as young as 13 is horrific.

Bravo. Finally, someone gets it. Finally, someone understands what needs to be done.

Notice that she is not pushing for the closure of all teenage magazines out of hand- just those "that encourage young girls to diet." Granted, right now that's every teenage magazine that's in print. But it doesn't have to be that way. What Cruz is saying is that those magazines could remain in print, so long as they would stop pushing diet-starvation.

There's nothing wrong with girls' publications as a medium- merely their content. If these magazines featured true plus-size models (size 14 and higher), if they stopped using underweight models, if they stopped running any diet ads or any stories promoting weight loss, but instead ran content that encouraged girls to happily eat whatever they want and as much as they want, then they would be a positive force.

Cruz's idea is the only sensible approach to this problem. It's high time that someone proposed it.

Last edited by HSG : 15th December 2010 at 07:27. Reason: URL edited
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Old 15th December 2010   #7
HSG
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Default Re: Nine in 10 girls pressued to starve (article)


This important thread features some of the year's most significant discussions regarding body image.

Maureen and Meredith indicate what is particularly insidious about current "weight epidemic" propaganda:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Maureen
The diet-medical industrial complex is continuously making over natural traits and phenomena (e.g., "cellulite") as pathologies that can only be cured by products made and marketed by the same diet-medical industrial complex.

The pathologizing of certain weight categories is growing
Quote:
Originally Posted by Meredith
The diet-exercise and starvation-torture industries are bringing up generations of victims who will be enslaved to those industries' products, when there is nothing wrong with them in the first place.

That these industries are fuelling body dissatisfaction for profit is appalling enough on its own, if hardly surprising. This is typical, predatory, corporatist behaviour. (The tobacco industry has historically been just as pernicious.) The problem is not the "free market" per se, for, like all things in this world, there are good elements and bad elements in capitalism, and the starvation/torture industries are the worst offenders of all.

However, as Graham notes, the fact that the government is now fuelling this weight hysteria is an especially insidious development. The current U.S. administration did not originate this pernicious agenda, but it has egregiously amplified it, to the point that not only is it now a blatant assault on civil liberties, but also tantamount to state-sanctioned child abuse.

One would have to go back to the communist governments of the Soviet Bloc to find comparably malevolent examples of social engineering.

The government is supposed to be protecting the public from predatory industries like the starvation/torture conglomerates, not pushing their toxic agenda. It is supposed to be curbing their socially harmful practices, not aiding and abetting them.

Good government action would comprise banning underweight models and regulating the pro-anorexia fashion industry. Instead, the state is doing the opposite and mandating child starvation. It is uncritically accepting the diet/exercise industry's phony research postulating a weight "epidemic" (research that the industry bought and paid for, and is absolute rubbish), instead of independently scrutinizing this junk science and tearing it apart as a fiction that has been trumped up merely to justify weight-shame profiteering.

When nine out of ten young girls have been brainwashed into depriving themselves of food, as the article that Chad posted indicates, that constitutes a crisis; that is a genuine epidemic. That is what the government should be trying to curb, instead of doing the opposite and monstrously augmenting the problem.

A sufficient analogy for this Orwellian scenario is hard to conceive. It would be as if, during the Gulf oil spill, the government had not only left BP free to contaminate the ocean as much as it wished, but actually opened up a new uncapped well of its own, to spill even more poison into the Gulf.

In the face of all of this, Penelope Cruz's remarks indicate the only sane solution, and identify what actions the government should be taking. Instead of instituting programs to teach young girls to hate their bodies, and creating generations of new customers for starvation/torture companies (which it is currently doing), the government should be closing down every teenage magazine that pushes young girls to diet (which would be every magazine currently in print). It should only allow those magazines to remain in print that immediately stop pushing starvation/torture, start featuring naturally full-figured models size 14 or better, and, as Kaitlynn suggested, run content that encourages girls to happily eat whatever they want and as much as they want.

Lovely Valerie Lefkowitz (Wilhelmina, size 14) adopting an "angelic" pose, exhibiting an attractive swell of roundness at her abdomen.

- Click to view larger

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