Unrealistic Summer Dieting--Love Your Body At IT'S Healthiest!
By Kara Chyung
Once a year or so, Us Weekly will publish an issue entitled “Diets That Work!” where they feature celebrities’ eating habits, their workouts, and more importantly of course, their fabulous bikini bodies. While I think it’s important to try to eat well and stay active, I don’t think that being thin or having a “perfect body” is a very healthy goal. Beauty comes in many other packages other than thin. And after all, what is a perfect body? I think it’s safe to say that there’s not one universal description. But according to Us Weekly, a healthy body is one that possesses Jennifer Lopez’s butt, Rihanna’s abs, Cameron Diaz’s arms, and Carrie Underwood’s legs.
What’s unfair about these articles is that the Hollywood version of a healthy lifestyle is pretty unrealistic, yet the magazine is passing it off as normal, even optimal. In reality though, most people don’t have time to work out six days a week and can’t have chefs and food delivery plans. It’s unfair for a girl to compare herself with people who have the time and the money to dedicate to how their bodies look. Not to mention that the pictures are undoubtedly edited and photoshopped to perfection.
It’s good that the magazine is trying to encourage people to be healthier by sharing diet tips, but these magazines aren’t really promoting health. Instead, they promote diets and workouts that will make a woman look good rather than improve their health. This mentality is evident in their covers, which say things such as, “Flat stomach secrets,” or “Get thin fast!” Associating health purely with looks is not right or healthy, and it only encourages the focus that the media already puts on looks and appearances.
By covering pages after pages with celebrities in bikinis and calling them the “hottest bodies,” these magazines are warping the image of a healthy woman. So you need to be “healthier” if you don’t look good in a skimpy bikini? If you don’t have the body of a supermodel, then you need to change?
I’m not saying that every single female celebrity is high maintenance about their bodies, but there are definitely many who are and that don’t eat a very balanced diet. In a recent issue of People Magazine, an article entitled “How Hollywood Eats” featured three celebrities and what they eat in the course of a day. All of these women ate under 1500 calories (the normal is around 2,000) and their snacks consisted mainly of water. A nutritionist reviewed their diets and concluded that each woman should’ve eaten from 500-800 more calories that day. That’s about the number of calories in a meal.
Perhaps the reason that celebrities are so strict with their diets is because of the pressures in Hollywood to be attractive. In today’s vain world, it’s much harder to be successful as a woman in Hollywood if you’re not attractive. Amanda Seyfried even once said about maintaining a perfect figure, “It’s part of the job; otherwise I wouldn’t get as many roles.”
Being healthy is about taking care of yourself. It’s about eating a balanced diet, staying active, and making good decisions. More importantly, it’s about being comfortable in your own skin and loving who you are. Remember, you’re beautiful because of who are you, not what you look like.