Issues concerning body image stigmas and health probems have been around for avery long time and continue to affect people all around the world today.
According to Psychcentral, 80% of American women find their appearance unsatisfactory, and more than 10 million of these women suffer from eating disorders. Regardless of what the standard for beauty morphs into over the years, there is an everlasting struggle to perfect female physical appearance using plastic surgery, weight loss pills, extreme diet and exercise, and other extreme methods including the use of laxatives and corsets for ‘waist training’. This heightened awareness of body shape begins with the powerful influence of the media on our everyday lives. We are presented with the ‘perfect body and face’ through the covers of magazines, music videos, movies, billboards and TV commercials.
It should be a more well-known fact that only 5% of women naturally possess the body type often portrayed by Americans in the media, therefore it would be a true achievement to embrace one’s natural body shape.
On a more positive angle, it should be noted that there has been a shift in beauty perception to a healthier figure. Vogue magazine is one of the many that have joined the growing movement that “too thin is no longer in.”
Our society has moved into a phase wherein some say that it is more beautiful to look ‘curvy’ and healthy. However women should be cautioned that while ‘thin’ is no longer ‘in’, they should remember that carrying excessive weight is not a positive thing either as it has negative effects on health. It is essential to strike the proper balance between ‘healthy’ and the onset of excessive weight problems.
Buzzfeed released a thought-provoking video which demonstrated the standards of beauty from eras ranging from Ancient Egypt and Victorian England to the present day. It can be argued that perhaps the ever-changing perception of beauty is the reason why the battle against body image dissatisfaction is one that can’t be won.
Featured photo credit: Buzzfeed: Women’s Ideal Body Shapes Through Time via youtu.be