A while back I noticed an article that was all up in arms about a "plus size" model posing nude. I admit I was curious. Now, don't get me wrong, I am definitely NOT a fan of porn or gratuitous nudity, but I was curious. This article had nothing to do with porn or nudity. It had everything to do with size and perceptions. See, the photos of this size-12 woman (really a very pretty woman) were accompanied by interesting facts about the modeling industry. Facts like...
- Size 6 is now considered a "plus size."
- Twenty years ago, the average model weighed only 8% less than the average American woman. Today the average model weighs 23% less than the average American woman.
- Most runway models meet the BMI physical criteria for anorexia.
- Fifty percent of women wear a size 14 or larger, but most standard clothing outlets cater to sizes 14 or smaller.
- The majority of "plus-size" models on agency boards are between a 6 and 14.
This can all be very discouraging!
But consider this.
I wear a size 6 or 8, depending on how much stretch the garment has, and how I want it to fit. So.. I'm a plus size, right?
Now go to the BMI chart. I'm 5'3", 129 (as of about 9:30 this morning). My BMI is 23, well within "normal" on the chart.
How messed up is that? Am I a "plus-size" or am I "normal"..?
Now, I've never really followed fashion. You could probably call me boring. I'm not necessarily fashion-impaired, but I'm certainly not completely out of touch. (Really, it doesn't take a genius to tell that Helena Bonham Carter has a .. uh.. "unique" fashion sense... that I don't think should be repeated outside of Holywood.. or inside, for that matter!)
Now, any of you who actually know me, who know what I look like... you're probably rolling your eyes at the mere thought that someone would consider me a plus-size. Which makes it even sadder for the "big girls" out there. I feel badly for the women who want to be a size 12, who go on crash diets and other extreme measures to lose a few pounds or inches.
The number on the inside of your clothes should be the last one you're worried about. The numbers that matter are the ones you get from your doctor.
- How is your blood sugar? Is your diet such that managing the sugars in your blood aren't overly taxing on your pancreas?
- Where's your blood pressure? Are your arteries and heart healthy?
- What is your cholesterol (both HDL-the good kind.. and LDL-the bad kind)?
- And (I think) most importantly, does your body do what you need it to do? Are you able to do the things you want to do without getting tired or winded?
If these numbers and indicators are good, then take a pair of scissors to that stupid number on the inside of your clothes and above all....