There were mixed reactions when Kate Moss famously said ‘nothing tastes as good as skinny feels.’ Despite a lot of outrage at her statement, ideas about how our bodies should look don’t seem to have changed. The weight-loss industry is still a huge one, and it’s still growing.
Thinspiration is an actual thing; it’s the things that inspire you to get skinny. My sister is currently trying to lose weight (although she doesn’t actually need to) and has stuck loads of pictures around her mirror; mainly of skinny girls with a six-pack in their matching underwear.
This idea of comparing our bodies to pictures (that have probably been photoshopped) isn’t healthy. There’s a lot of conflicting information in the media. On the one hand, we should be supporting people with eating disorders, on the other, we should be encouraging girls to have washboard stomachs. Recently something has surfaced online called ‘The Belly Button Challenge.’ The idea is that you try to touch your naval by swinging your arm around your back. If you are ‘slim enough’ you should be able to reach your belly button and snap a picture. It’s a frightening trend that has no science in it at all. It only increases the pressure of young people to have tiny waists.
On a positive note there has been a recent advert called ‘This Girl Can.’ It conveys the message that real girls ‘sweat, jiggle and inspire.’ It encourages young woman to focus on keeping their body strong and healthy rather than thin.
On Instagram there are lots of fitness fanatics that share their tips and selfies of their ‘perfect’ bodies, again this is not necessarily instilling people with the right information. The message should always be to keep healthy and happy in a realistic way. I can’t ever envisage a time where I will wake up and have quinoa porridge with coconut shavings, chia seeds and bee pollen (who knew that bee pollen was even a thing?) In the mornings I just about manage to cobble together some toast; I wouldn’t be able to faff around with all that malarkey.
It’s so very difficult to encourage both men and women to love their bodies when there is so much conflicting information floating around. We are born with one body and we’re stuck with it until we pop our clogs, so we should focus on looking after it rather than punishing it for not looking a certain way.
At the end of the day the world isn’t going to implode if you cave in and indulge in a pistachio magnum. As long as you get the balance of healthy food (with the odd naughty treat) and plenty of exercise, then you will be more than okay. Chuck your thinspiration out of the window and sweat, jiggle and inspire instead.
If you enjoyed this article, why not check out ‘My Body, My Buddy – Taking Care of ME‘?