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News

The latest news on this change — carefully culled from the world wide web by our change agents. They do the surfing, so you don't have to!

Promoting Thinness is a Crime

Strutting down the catwalk, many models are adorned in clothing that doesn’t fit them, but instead hangs off of their bodies. Like a human clothing hanger.

The French government has made a stand to stop promoting a super thin ideal. Advertisers and supermodels set bad examples of body image, but startling web sites and publications persuade individuals toward “thinspiration,” some going as far as offering advice on how to starve yourself, drop pounds quickly and binge. Already approved by lower Parliament, a bill to discipline “any means of mass communication—including magazines and web sites—that promote eating disorders like anorexia or bulimia with punishments of up to three years in prison and more than $70,000 in fines.”

The bill was created and proposed after a Brazilian model died from anorexia in 2006. But models and fashionistas aren’t the only ones craving to be thin. More than 10 million people in the United States alone are suffering from eating disorders, according to the National Eating Disorders Association, and bad “inspiration” could send anyone down a road to disaster.

But it will be hard to pinpoint which sites are doing harm. Even though they are giving negative advice—is anyone actually listening? And if a girl came to testify in court, how do you judge someone by their weight, without facing more lawsuits or sending that individual into further denial?

It can be difficult to find your happy weight, but it does exist somewhere between overweight and ultra skinny. You can find it by being healthy, and not turning to these deadly methods of crash dieting. [The New York Times]

Posted: 4/16/08