Recently, I was flipping through a friend's magazine and found it filled with adverts for wonder diet pills. What amazed me most was this picture:
I prefer the 'before' picture. She just looks happier there. Being naturally thin is fine, but how much effort must it take to stay that shape if that's not what your body wants to do? And how many pills, probably. Did Stacey really need to lose 31 pounds? With good diet and exercise, Stacey might have been happier to lose 10 pounds and still be allowed the odd slice of cake.
Body image has been on my mind recently, what with trying to lose a bit of weight myself, and also because a good friend of mine is about to go and have herself some plastic surgery. (I'm worried about her. I do understand, though - if something bothers you enough to make you unhappy, you may as well change it and be happy.)
I have The Belly Project in my newsfeed. It's a website, started by a midwife and a sex educator, which shows all kinds of bellies, and which aims to make women realise that bellies are all different, especially after bearing children. It's fascinating. I was thinking of those pictures the other day, when I heard on the radio that in Madagascar (I think it was there, but I can't find this information on the internet anywhere) the concept of beauty is very different. Women with large bellies and stretch marks are considered very beautiful there. I suppose there thin women will feel left out and will go on fattening diets.