One of the biggest misperceptions in society depicted through the media is an ideal, unhealthy body image.
According to the National Eating Disorders Association, the average American woman is 5 feet 4 inches tall weighing 140 pounds. While the average American woman model is 5 feet 11 inches tall weighing 117 pounds. It makes being confident in your own skin extremely challenging because of the unrealistic body type we’re supposed to live up to. Thankfully, there are those attempting to break the mold of what’s considered “beautiful.”
Sport’s Illustrated has been making major headlines thanks to Robyn Lawley and Ashley Graham; two of the women being featured in the pages of their 2015 swimsuit edition.
Sadly, what makes these women stand out is the fact that they’re the first plus size models to ever grace the pages of this magazine. While Graham flaunts her size 16 figure in a paid advertisement, Lawley is the first plus-size model to be photographed by Sport’s Illustrated.
It baffles me to think that the average American woman is said to be a size 14 when society is trying to tell us that nothing over a size four is considered thin.
No wonder the number of both women and men with eating disorders has continued to increase over the years. Society gives people the impression that in order to be beautiful, you have to be skinny.
However, Lawley and Graham are doing their best to help open people’s eyes to the beauty of all body types.
“I know my curves are sexy and I want everyone to know that theirs are too,” said Graham in a statement to E! Online.
This is no reason to hide and every reason to flaunt. The world is ready for more curves in bikinis.”
These models are just some of the few that are attempting to spread the idea of being happy with your body, no matter the size or shape.
Giving this confidence to people is becoming even more important as the number of people unhappy with their bodies increases and the age getting lower.
According to the National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders up to 24 million people in America, of all ages and genders suffer from an eating disorder, such as anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa or binge eating disorder. With the ability to be fatal, getting treatment and help for an eating disorder is extremely important.
Alex LaRosa, a self-proclaimed plus-size model, was on HuffPost Live to talk about some of her issues with the ways of society.
La Rosa said, “In a world where you’re telling women that plus-sizes are 4 and up, you’re causing body image issues. You’re causing unrealistic expectations that every one -- every woman -- should be a size 4.”
I honestly couldn’t agree more with her. These models and celebrities that the public look up to have a job to look a certain way in order to live up to the mainstream idea of what being beautiful is.
Rather than helping people become more confident and happy in their own skin, expectations like this create stress and anxiety regarding weight.
It’s sad to think that looking in the mirror and being completely happy with what you see is considered a gift, especially in today’s world.
Hopefully we’re getting closer to a time when all body types will be exemplified as beautiful throughout society.