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Re: Plus size model debate

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I enjoyed reading the story and all credit to Denise for her modelling career. There has been a good deal of debate on this topic, those for plus size models say that they aim to appeal to the average woman and average women are certainly not the waifs that you normally see modelling. The argument is that seeing unrealistic images of womanhood increases women’s anxiety about their bodies and appearance and that increases in the occurrence of eating disorders are linked with this. Interestingly, I have never heard men discussing that the appearance of male models with their six-packs and perfect figures makes them feel inadequate.

Then those against will say that it normalizes obesity and those who are overweight will have less incentive to lose weight if they can buy high fashion. I know one high street store (can’t remember which) has courted a lot of controversy by introducing plus size mannequins in their stores.

Here is what I find most interesting. According to the scales, I am still obese as my BMI is 30+. I have to say that it is only just over 30 and I very much hope it will be under 30 in the next few weeks, However, I don’t feel obese. Most of my clothes are a size 16 and I’m active, I don’t get pain and breathlessness and sweat a bucket when I walk like I used to. I have normal blood pressure. So if I’m a size 16, I am slimmer that Denise Bidot but there is no way I’d ever look as good in that dress. In fairness, I have nearly 20 years on her and I don’t have an army of stylists, make-up artists and hairdressers at my disposal. She doesn’t have to try to disguise her saggy skin.

Ultimately, I have to decide why it is that attaining a healthy weight is important to me. Is it to look good and to meet the criteria of someone’s ideal woman which Paul readily told us about (not getting at you Paul, honestly) or is it to be healthy and live well. The answer is probably a combination of both.

Chris x

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