Like Diana, Princess of Wales before her, Kate Middleton has become a fashion powerhouse as the wife to an heir to the British throne.Â Her clothing, accessories, and grooming are scrutinized and her â€œrepeatsâ€ are dutifully noted.Â But there’s one dark aspect of her person that’s creating a trend that’s not get very much press time:Â how she’s become the gold standard for anorexics, bulimics, and size zero addicts around the world.
Kate’s 5’10â€ and weighed 130 pounds when she got engaged last November.Â By the wedding, she was reportedly down to 100 pounds (45 kg).Â A â€œhealthyâ€ weight for a woman her height is between 130 and 170 lbs (59-77 kg).Â People who have seen her in person (including one of your fellow readers who saw her during their recent Canadian tour), are shocked by how thin she is.Â If she really does weigh 100 lbs, then she’s probably unable to fulfill her royal duty to create an â€œheir and a spareâ€ right now – her body has likely gone into survival mode and she’s stopped menstruating.
Not that her menstrual cycle or family planning is any of my business, mind you, but few people are talking about the hazards of being this thin.Â No, the press is only saying how â€œsvelteâ€ and â€œtrimâ€ she is because that’s what sells magazines and gets clicks online.
But the pro-anorexic community is all over this.Â Like Victoria Beckham, the Olsen twins, and Kiera Knightley, Kate and Pippa Middleton have become the latest â€œthinspirationâ€ (â€œthinspoâ€) celebrity icons on â€œpro-anaâ€ and â€œpro-miaâ€ websites â€“ sites that promote anorexia and bulimia.Â Many of them say they DON’T advocate unhealthy lifestyles, yet show pictures of the super-skinny smoking, sunning, and whatnot.Â This one made me sad.Â Take a look at some of the words and images on either side of the blog.Â Heartbreaking!
Note:Â I DO NOT APPROVE of these sites or such dangerous behavior, but decided to give you a glimpse of this world so you can see for yourself what’s going on.
So what does all of this have to do with size zero?
For many, size zero has become the new body ideal.Â It used to be curves, it used to be fitness, but now it’s all about the size.Â Or size zero, in this case.Â When Jennifer Hudson mentioned in passing that she’s now a size zero, it made headlines.Â When Jessica Simpson put on a few pounds, it made headlines.Â When Oprah’s and Kirstie Alley’s weight goes up and down, it makes headlines.
What DOESN’T make enough headlines?
How eating too much OR too little is unhealthy, uncool, and unfashionable.
Everyone has a healthy weight range.Â You can find yours by using the BMI (Body Mass Index) calculator from the National Institute of Health.
A healthy weight isn’t based on dress size, metabolism, bone structure, family history, stress levels, etc. – it’s based on how much weight someone your height should be carrying to prevent any weight-related health issues.Â Period.
Overweight People Are More Likely To:
- develop Type 2 diabetes
- have high blood pressure
- have high cholesterol
- develop coronary artery disease
- have joint pain
- have sleep apnea
- have strokes
Underweight People Are More Likely To:
- develop Type 1 diabetes
- be infertile
- develop osteoporosis
- be anemic
- have immune system deficiencies
- have heart, liver, and kidney damage if anorexic*
- have stomach, throat, and mouth damage if bulimic
(*Grammy Award winner Karen Carpenter died of heart failure due to chronic anorexia back in 1983)
Wow!Â Nothing head-turning about either of these lists.Â Except, perhaps, how much time is lost and money is spent on treating these ailments.
Look, how much you weigh is ultimately between you and your scale.Â It should have nothing to do with fashion, a certain size, pressure from a mate, or a popular princess-to-be.Â Your goal should be to be healthy.Â If you need to add or drop a few pounds, then do it.
But if you’re having trouble managing on your own, it’s time to bring in reinforcements â€“ namely your doctor, who can help you whether you’re eating too much or too little.Â This is particularly important if you’re already suffering from any of the weight-related health issues listed above.Â Don’t mess around with this.
So what’s the bottom line?
There can be lots of pressure to be thin, particularly if you’re often in the limelight or work in an industry that’s obsessed with low weight.Â But don’t take it to extremes.Â Learn from the mistakes of others (including Kate Middleton and the late Princess of Wales) and strive for good health over a certain dress size.Â Because in the end, weight trends come and go, but being healthy is always in style.