Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Nothing Tastes As Good As Skinny Feels

Just last week... there was an uproar when the waif supermodel Kate Moss commented that, "Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels."
If that is what she wants to live by then so be it. So what if she exercises, doesn’t over eat and doesn't eat junk food??? I say, good on her!
Why do people practically gun down skinny women who are in the limelight... saying they are bad role models for younger girls. Yet other women who either have had plastic surgery or are obese... are not scrutinised the same way. Are they any better role models for a healthy body image?
Now don't get me wrong.. I do love Oprah.. and I'm not saying Skinny is good and Fat is bad. All I'm saying if we're so obsessed over the perfectly natural and healthy body image... then don't we have to be fair and criticise the women with silicon or women who are obese too?? Because if we put fat people and/or surgically enhanced people on TV, then aren't we encouraging young impressionable teens to not exercise, just and eat and eat and just be fat yet successful? Or make them feel unattractive unless they splash out for a set of fake tits or a new nose?
How is being skinny any worse an influence than any of that???
And what about pro athletes? Pro athletes risk their health and body to play during injuries, they exert their bodies to the point where their immune systems are compromised…. (and make a lot of money because of it)... yet it's perfectly ok?

Why just attack the skinny?

The fashion industry has been criticised for using "size zero" models... if they succumb to pressure and stop the use of size zero models, wouldn't they be discriminating against the women who out of their own volition just prefer to be size zero? ( Since we're on this topic... many studies have shown that Anorexia cannot be picked up by looking at photographs of super-thin models anyway!)

Imagine if we denied someone a spot as an actor or news anchor or any figure of influence (e.g. politician), because he/she is over weight or is a smoker or has wrinkly skin from too much sun worshipping or has a plastic nose. Would that be fair?

Of course not. So why should it be okay to discriminate against skinny people. Is being obese any less of a choice or any less unhealthy as being skinny? I don't think so.
I'm not advocating pro-anorexia sentiments here... but neither am I saying that you should just not have self control, eat like a pig, hardly exercise and then be horrified at the thought of others being svelte and persecute them!

Blame it on your genes/stress/big bones... or go into denial... whatever... I'm not here to judge you. Live the way you want to, don't let anyone tell you otherwise. But just realise that skinny is not a crime either.

I just happen to feel that skinny does indeed feel great for me. And even though I do love my desserts... if I were not able to stay slim through exercise, I would of course cut back on my creme brulee and cakes. I would rather never eat another creme brulee for the rest of my life than be over weight. But that's just me. I'm happy like that. I understand what Kate meant when she said Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels, indeed. Now, is that so wrong?

Call me flat chested, call me a sack of bones, or even comment anonymously that I have thunderous fat thighs in a bid to pull down my self esteem. I am what I am, and I love my body.

26 comments:

  1. Anonymous9:01 am

    Well said Holly!! Can't stand it when pple comment on how skinny i am...its not my choice that im this thin...its in my genes!! i mean, look at my entire family for crying out loud! sheesh...its not like i starve myself...heck! i even have desserts ALL the time.

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  2. Well said Holly!! Can't stand it when pple comment on how skinny i am...its not my choice that im this thin...its in my genes!! i mean, look at my entire family for crying out loud! sheesh...its not like i starve myself...heck! i even have desserts ALL the time.

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  3. Anonymous12:04 pm

    skinny is unhealthy and it doesn't look good even. You are deceiving yourself if you think you have a good body. Puhleese

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  4. Anonymous1:53 pm

    you have a great bod holly...but a little skinny...dont let this get over your head though...pity you didnt really touch on the fact that at the end of the day it's really about being healthy...not about being size zero...

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  5. I LOVE THIS POST THE BEST BY FAR! Way to go, holly!

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  6. to anon @12.04

    why does skinny = unhealthy?
    it doesn't mean that if one is skinny, one starves herself til she's skinny! some of us can't help it if we're skinny...I can tell u i have 6 meals and supper each day and i exercise regularly as well...so how is that unhealthy? Im not Anorexic or have any eating disorders...and i have many friends who're like that as well.

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  7. hey holly, how to lose fats around the abdominal area? i've been gaining weight there... =( feeling pretty upset about the bulging belly 'cos it makes me look & feel pregnant.

    Generally, i do agree with your point that 'I am what I am & I love my body'. But have you considered those criticisms could also be an act to trigger people to voice out their opinions? =/

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  8. Anonymous3:53 pm

    Totally agree with your post! I Hate it so much when pple comment how skinny I am as though it is a crime, and that I have to eat more. Hello!!! I dont even go on a diet deliberately! Wat's wrong with being skinny but healthy!!

    And we don't go around telling fat pple " OMG you are so fat, Please eat less!"

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  9. Anonymous4:11 pm

    I think the world has to start somewhere and criticisms of how the way fat people live is far from ideal have been reflected in a lot of mediums so it is not true that skinny people are being attacked.

    I am currently living in North America and unlike Singapore, the cases of anorexia is extremely worrying and thus attention starts to divert from fat people to skinny people. My point being, by highlighting how bad it is to go into extreme, people might hopefully converge in the middle. I am not sure how the whole skinny criticisms are going but if they help a certain percentage of young girls, i think it is ok.

    I do enjoy being skinny but sometimes little girls need more directions to tell the difference between skinny-dangerous and skinny-ok.

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  10. Anonymous7:36 pm

    I am skinny and everywhere i go, i had people telling me, are you anorexic/are you on diet/are u eating well...etc

    First off, i am born skinny due to my genes, no matter how much i eat, i still CAN'T gain weight, in fact if i missed a meal, i lose weight easily...(shoot me, no pun intended)

    I had at least 6 meals per day, probably i had high metabolism thus i cant gain weight easily inlike other people...haha

    I don't know, do you really have to look healthy then you are really healthy inside your body??

    I had never faint before in my whole life though i am skinny, unlike some of my friends, they look fleshier than me but they had fainted before,duh! Though I may be skinny(look unhealthy) but my monthly menses came every month, unlike some who look healthy(not skinny)but their monthly menses come irregularly...so what say you?

    if i see fat people around me, i do not go around and say hey, you are so fat, you eat alot ah??!!

    But i had telling me, hey, you're so skinny, did you eat at all?Rooaarrr...

    I'm very nice one ok, i don't go around and say YOU ARE FAT!!!

    Because I'm proud to be skinny!LOL

    Food is just so damn yummy and i don't have to worry about gaining excess fats here and there..lol

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  11. Anonymous9:18 pm

    Ditto!!!! I'm a naturally skinny person too and ny son has unfortunately taken after me.. you can imagine all the things people say. They think I'm starving myself to be thin and neglecting my son. grrrr

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  12. Anonymous11:42 pm

    Too all the skinny people in the house,cheers!

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  13. Anonymous1:37 pm

    Good post Holly! I can soooo relate to this! Ive been skinny all my life but I eat like a horse! Food is my greatest passion and I love being skinny cos I can eat all I want. I do exercise hoping to add bulk.

    Throughout my growing up life, ive had nasty fat gals ganging up on me calling me
    bulimic when they were the ones starving themselves during recess and losing hair and having faint spells!!

    I used to have low self esteem about my body but now I see where its coming from. I choose to think they are bitter that they said such biting words with the full intention to hurt and destroy my esteem - cos they can never be skinny.

    I have never been insensitive to fat ppl but having such treatments from them make me resent and disrespect them sometimes.

    Lastly you are healthy if ya naturally skinny but if ya struggling and starving urself to be skinny, thats not cool.

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  14. Anonymous4:30 pm

    Well, fat people suffer, too, not just the skinny.

    People talk about them, too. Even though people might not say it into their faces. -shrugs-

    So using FAT people as an example, is not really a good idea.

    But I get what u're trying to say in ur post, and I agree with u! As long as one is comfortable with his/her own body shape/size/colour or whatever, they should not be penalised for it.

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  15. Autymn1:54 am

    I think what the article was trying to say that Kate Moss' comment might come across as promoting Anorexia because anorexics might use it/her as thinspiration. They get "triggered" by such comments. Especially now that the fashion houses are urged not to use size 0 models, her remark totally reflects badly on their intention.

    Being obese and opting for plastic surgery draws its own flake as well. Imo, why they do not generate as much attention as thin-ness does is because it doesn't come across as a "disease". With an overweight person, which is obvious to the eye, you can always put an overweight person on a healthy eating and exercise regime. But you almost can't force anorexics to eat, and you almost can't tell when someone is eating disordered. They hide it so well. If people think that if you're thin that means you're anorexic, then they are oh so wrong. True anorexics will never let anyone see their figure. But I digress. Plastic surgery on the other hand, has no fault. Yes it might promote a fake image of beauty or make a dent on self-esteem, but it essentially is not life threatening. Unlike Anorexia, which causes death.

    That's why the media is harsher towards such irresponsible comments. She's a role model to many females. There has got to be some self-awareness there. Just my two cents worth.

    ps: I suffer from an eating disorder so I totally get how damaging such a comment is.

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  16. Hi Autymn,

    yup. The "uproar" over Kate moss' comment was indeed over it's possible impact on anorexic girls.

    Maybe I should have made it more explicit in my post??? (I just thought it was obvious so I didn't)


    But I am however, defending her. And I do feel there's nothing wrong with her comment, even if the media took it out of context.

    In fact, I happen to also think Kate Moss has a healthy looking body. If you look at pics of her now, her bod isn't scrawny, her face isn't gaunt.

    I have had friends who were anorexic/bulimic when I was a teenager... and I honestly don't think that if kate moss had said - "oh... i love food and I wish I weren't so thin." or if you cammed every catwalk in the world and ever magazine with plus size models... that it would make any difference at all to my anorexic friends.

    I'm sure you've been told that anorexia is a psychological disorder stemming from obsessive compulsive dispositions.

    And a true anorexic has it in his/her DNA.. as in it's the way their brainis... from birth. They are more likely to go on to develop anorexia regardless of whether they have been exposed to images of super-thin models.

    I feel it's unfair, for the media to blame non-anorexic thin women for the whole disease itself. What are thin women to do? Not be in the limelight, or not honestly say how they love their bodies or the fact tht being thin makes them feel good.... because there are anorexics out there?

    I hope you're well and I mean no offense (you mentioned you're a sufferer).

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  17. Autymn10:55 am

    Hey Holly.

    I agree with you that Moss does look healthier now. She used to be scrawny thin. Which she didn't used to draw so much flake then. Thin-ness is not a crime. There is nothing wrong with being thin. Don't get it wrong. I think the media was just trying to caution against such comments because although pictures of models and the likes would not cause Anorexia (as you said and I agree), it might be a "trigger" as I've mentioned for those who already are disordered. Some sort like a validation to their behaviours? That what they do is indeed right.

    And I disagree with your statement that "a true anorexic has it in his/her dna". There is no such thing as a "true" anorexic. How do you define "true"? Is there a benchmark for how eating disordered an individual is? Eating disorders are not inherited through DNAs but from behaviour observation. And many cases start from a simple diet, slowly leading to obsessive compulsive habits such as calorie-counting. Then it goes downhill from there.

    All in all, Moss probably isn't at fault for making such a comment, even though imo she should have taken a bit more care. But the media was probably just trying to protect the masses. You know how the media works. They have a knack for blowing things out of proportion!

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  18. Hi again Autymn :)

    yup, def agree tht an anorexic, upon seeing skinny women in the media, might see it as a validation of their behaviour.

    But I always thought that these anorexic women... would aim to be skinnier no matter what they see.. or no matter how many people tell them that they look thin already.

    What I meant by a "true" anorexic is someone who actually has the disorder (clinically), and not some ditzy teenager who skips a few meals because she saw some skinny model on tv.

    The reason I say it's in the DNA is because based on what I've read ( I admit .. i havent read extensively on this though).. is that there are genetic predispositions towards the illness. And yes, I do believe that ditzy teenager mentioned in the above paragraph will not get anorexia from looking at thin models and skipping a few meals because she thinks its cool. I aspire to be thinner too (as with a lot of women), I exercise and try not to pig out so much but I'm not anorexic.

    Your comments have made me more interested in this topic, and it has shed a very different light onto my perception of it as well.

    Thank you for that :)

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  19. Autymn7:21 pm

    Yes you're totally right on the fact that they'd aim to be skinnier no matter what. That's why they go into treatment! To invalidate their thoughts and actions. The whole fear of gaining weight is usually an external manifestation of the internal turbulence. You have it long enough and the fear/habits stay permanent. It's like a horrible addiction.

    Those ditzy teens that you talk about, they're wannarexics. But they are VERY pro-active in trying to BE anorexic. Like they'd seek tips, worship "Queen Ana" (popularized way of saying Anorexia for them), look for thinspiration from models and always go "think thin". Using your term, "true anorexics" do not think in that way or have to resort to using any help. Restriction happens not because they want to starve to get thin, but because they are truly afraid to eat. Like.. I flip out if I have to keep food in. I wasn't diagnosed with Anorexia 2yrs ago though. Bulimia it was. Which is even less understood by people. Often dismissed and have people disgust really.

    Thanks for your replies too! I love reading your blog. You're a very intelligent lady!

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  20. There's nothing wrong being skinny, as long you're not intentionally starving yourself just to pursue that 'skinny model' look.

    I prefer my women with some muscle tone and not exercise-phobic. That's just awesomely healthy looking!

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  21. Anonymous12:13 am

    Hi Holly,

    I've followed your blog for a few months now but I've never commented.

    As someone who has suffered from anorexia as a teenager I'd just like to share a couple of my thoughts as you mentioned you had been doing some reading and I thought you might be interested.

    I agree with what you said about how external factors - such as plus size models on the catwalk - probably wouldn't change the behaviour of clinically diagnosed anorexics.

    But I'd like to echo Autymn's sentiments about how Moss' comments may be miscontrued by young women with eating disorders and used as a form of validation.

    For me and the other anorexics I've known, anorexia is about control, and from my experience, it has been linked with obsessive compulsive tendencies - I used to brush my teeth after every meal, with three different kinds of toothpaste and two different toothbrushes. For a while things at home weren't great and in high school, there is so much in your life that is out of your locus of control. One of the few things that you can have total control over is your own consumption. For many of the girls I've known, there was a strong competitive aspect to it as well, it wasn't about being beautiful, it was about being the thinnest girl in the room, it was about the number you saw on the scale. If another girl mentioned that they were going on a diet, I'd immediately eye her as competition but I'd never ever let on in public that I had a problem. At my lowest weight, I was about 38kg, which probably doesn't sound that light to many petite Asian women, but I'm Australasian.

    This is just my opinion but the intention of those 'wannarexics' that Autymn mentioned
    is mainly attention. They are the ones who always brag about wanting to go on diets and will sometimes make really thoughtless comments like 'I want to be anorexic'. I would probably just consider them to be weight and image conscious rather than 'true' sufferers. In other words, they talk the talk but don't walk the walk. They may skip a couple of meals but they never really go to the absolute extreme as anorexics do.

    Those with a real disorders are highly secretive about their consumption habits and try, at all costs, to avoid exposure. If I was ever confronted it was deny deny deny and I'd pretend to eat in front of friends, though I never purged as is the practice of bulimics.

    I highly doubt that people are genetically predispositioned to anorexia. Perhaps if they inherited an OCD complex, and even that, to an extent, is a product of externalities.

    I hope this hasn't been too long a post or that I've offended anyone. I always enjoy reading your blog, I think you're really genuine and I just wanted to say that your body looks lovely and healthy :)

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  22. I think I'm going to be rather straightforward here.(but no offense intended, just my opinion).

    Skinny is relative?
    To most girls my age and below(approx 22 now), skinny would be below 42/43 kg, standing at 165.

    Fat is 49/50 kg, standing at 165.
    Anything in the middle is average.

    If you realise, most girls in singapore are size 6 or smaller(uk). So its almost natural for us to assume that being skinny is being this small(take a look at secondary kids nowadays!).

    No i don't have an issue with skinny people. Just that I want to highlight that its really relative.
    For me, the very fact that all my peers weigh between 48-54 standing all above 173 makes me feel very very fat.I consider myself fat all the time. (I'm 47 at 162)
    Therefore, the constant social pressure to maintain weight or lose weight is quite heavy to me.

    In my opinion, holly is healthy.(: healthy body, nice complexion, but I never associated her with the word skinny. let me remind everyone kate moss is 171cm, and 47kg. That is quite skinny.
    Generally(to b more visual), it would mean such girls have waist would be 22-23 inch, with probably smaller chest than most of us(unless europeans or plastic surgery) and 33inch for the hips.

    Count yourself lucky if you really don't have to exercise to maintain my so called category of skinny. ): I wished I was as such!
    I seriously exercise 7 times a week intensely(like 50 labs in an hr) and like watch my food to make sure I don't go pass 47.

    Hmm, I must say many fingers have been pointed at those that are fat.
    We assume obesity with laziness, with health problems and with a lot more social issues.
    I remember being laughed at when I was cubbier and how the fat girl in classes was always the outcast.(every school I teach and attended) In europe(I'm currently in UK), there has been names such as plus size and monster size used in the fashion world for bigger sized ladies. (little et al, 2003)I have personally been depressed about weight so many times, and have seen many people around me fretting about weight as well.

    So be sensitive about the usage of such words and also be discreet about how you would not need to do anything to be skinny in front of girls whom are not your range. I have seen a few examples of how such comments ruin other people's lives unintentionally(got a friend that nearly died from aneroxia). (:

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  23. Anonymous8:58 pm

    HUH!!?? standing at 165 u call 50 kgs fat????

    WTF?

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  24. I so agree I read a fashion magazine that had an article on a guess model talking about her curves and how she was all women and that it seemed uterly ridicoulous to call a size two model a real women!!! I was so offended because I am a naturally a size 0 and after my daughter i am still only a size 2! I think it is so unfair that commenting on an overweight person weight is offensive yet people think it is ok to call someone to skinny. I have heard people comment on thin famous women and saying how horrible of a role model they are but not every girl is a size 4 or 10 or up. I was always picked on and even teachers would call me out in class and say i needed to eat more when all i ate was mcdonalds and junk food... If it werent for the thin models in magazines I would probably have had no one to look up to and I would have believed everything everyone said about me. I am not saying there shouldnt be more of every type of women in the spotlight I am just saying why does one have to be better then the other. why cant fat thin and fake just be what they are??? People should just be happy in there bodies and I dont think anyone has a right to tear anyone else down!

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  25. Anonymous9:10 am

    oh my god FINALLY someone writes about this!

    Im naturally skinny and can eat anything i want and dont put on weight, does that make me a bad role model? its ridiculous how when 'curvy' women are in magazines theyre referred to as 'real women'....so skinny people are fake women?!

    The skinny/fat debate is so ridiculously one-sided...if a magazine called a celebrity 'too fat', there would be a huge scandal, but its absolutely fine to call someone too skinny?! It hurts just as much! Either way youre saying they look bad..

    Im just so glad people agree with me! haha <3

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