The media constantly exposes us to Photoshopped images of young size 6 women with large breasts and long, thick glossy hair. We see these images so often nowadays that we actually become brain washed into thinking that these women we see are role models of beauty and that many women like this exist. There are so many celebrities competing against each other to look the skinniest and this rubs off on to the public who end up making stupid life changes to look like these ‘beautiful’ women. The sad thing about this is that many women fail to realise how beautiful they are because they are so obsessed with comparing themselves to these negative role models.
I was a very healthy size 8/10 who realistically did not need to lose ANY weight, but compared to the stick thin magazine models I looked frumpy. I looked in my long-length mirror everyday hating what I saw. My self esteem was at its lowest and I was genuinely unhappy with my body. I wanted to be the skinny girl with a six pack. I was so fed up with how I looked that I joined a gym and within a week I became obsessed. I went to the gym four times a week and made sure that I wouldn’t eat more than 1,200 calories a day. Over two months I lost over a stone and at first was happy with my transformation. I finally looked skinny like the celebs. I finally didn’t feel ugly in photos.
I had regular periods since they began and my immune system was really strong. However, when my next period was due after having lost that weight I was a week late which was extremely unusual for me. The period only lasted a few days which too was unusual. I looked into causes of late or missed periods and ‘low body fat’ came up. I researched that A women needs a certain amount of essential fat on their bodies to ovulate each month and for other organs to work properly and suddenly it occurred to me that I may have lost too much weight.
I measured my body fat on one of those weight machines and it came up that it was way too low. I was confused at this point because I was happy with the way I looked therefore not willing to put on weight but I was scared about my health.
That evening I stood in front of the mirror for a good ten minutes and noticed how thin I had become. I had lost my big bum which I got many compliments on before. I had lost the fat around my boobs, reducing the small size that they were already. I had also lost my curvy hips. I FINALLY realised that I was at the perfect weight before all this nonsense. I was too blinded by comparison to other’s to realise how lucky I was to have the body that I did.
I became anxious about my health so I began eating lot’s of high fat foods to put some weight back on. A couple of weeks passed and I still hadn’t increased my body fat. It frightened me so much that I may have messed up my body forever and wouldn’t get my old one back. I cannot believe that I risked my health, my immune system and my fertility, all to be a stick thin girl that I thought people would look up to.
Eventually my body fat increased a little and my periods were getting back on track. 6 months later, I’m at a healthy weight. I’m finally happy when I look in the mirror. Don’t get me wrong, When I see images of skinny celebrities labelled as ‘Best Bikini Body’ and ‘Best Legs of The Year’ I sigh a little of jealousy, but I sigh more because this is what the public thinks beauty is made of.
Every one is beautiful in individual ways. Every one has something beautiful about them that they may not see. No-one should have to change the way they were made to please someone else. Most importantly, A women does NOT have to be skinny to be beautiful. Real beauty comes from health and comes from the heart. Real beauty is you, you just have to open your eyes wide enough to see.