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The Enigma of Beauty

by Cathy Newman (National Geographic)

Diana Trochez
http://science.nationalgeographic.com/health-and-human-body/human-body/enigma-beauty/#page=10

What is beauty?
S The clich holds that beauty S Is there really a concrete

is in the eye of the beholder. However, reality sometimes proves to be far from that. the demand for beauty increases. As such, the demand for models increases. This is search isnt just for any modeltheres a certain description he/she must fit to be qualified for the job.

answer? Can beauty be accompanied with a checklist to make our lives easier? Dictionary, beauty is defined as : the quality or aggregate of qualities in a person or thing that gives pleasure to the senses or pleasurably exalts the mind or spirit.

S As a consumer-based society, S According to the Webster

The Real Deal


S

Sheli Jeff is part of the worlds best model agencies and shes looking for models. Of course, the requirements are tall and thin, among other things. When asked body type was was looking for, "Thin," she says. "You know, the skinny girls in school who ate all the cheeseburgers and milk shakes they wanted and didn't gain an ounce. Basically, they're hangers for clothes. How many girls actually fit that description?

Because many cant, they turn to Anorexiapromising only in their

minds.
In simple terms, Anorexia can be defined as loss of appetite

especially when prolonged. However, this can lead to the failure of vital organs that can ultimately cause death.

What are the Costs of Beauty?


S At its best, beauty celebrates. From the Txiko warrior in

Brazil painted in jaguar-like spots to Madonna in her metal bra, humanity revels in the chance to shed its everyday skin and masquerade as a more powerful, romantic, or sexy being.
S At its worst, beauty discriminates. Studies suggest

attractive people make more money, get called on more often in class, receive lighter court sentences, and are perceived as friendlier. We do judge a book by its cover.

Continued (Real Digits)


S The quest for beauty has been never-ending and as far

as many are concerned, it might never end.


S It has been reported that in the United States, in one

year, people spent six billion dollars on fragrance and another six billion on makeup.
S They also spent another sixteen billion dollars on hair

and skin-care products.


S In the mania to lose weight 20 billion was spent on diet

products and servicesin addition to the billions that were paid out for health club memberships and cosmetic surgery.

If beauty is so important, then whats the big deal?


S For one, this obsession with beauty is GLOBAL, which

means women all over the world are exposed to the dangers of becoming obsessed with beauty themselves.
S Really, its great for the world-wide economy and for

plastic surgeons!
S The biggest problem with this is the eating disorders that

tend to develop.

Is life not worth living unless you're thin?


S "Girls are literally weighing their self-esteem," says

Catherine Steiner Adair, a psychologist at the Harvard Eating Disorders Center in Boston. "We live in a culture that is completely bonkers. We're obsessed with sylphlike slimness, yet heading toward obesity. According to one study, 80 percent of women are dissatisfied with their bodies. Just think about how we talk about food: 'Let's be really bad today and have dessert.' Or: 'I was good. I didn't eat lunch.
S To say that all women with eating disorders want to look

like runway models is to gloss over a complex picture that weaves biology and family dynamics in with cultural influences. One thing can be said: Eating disorders are primarily a disease of women.

Anorexia is Real!

"My family moved here so I could attend the gymnastics academy," said the former gymnast we'll call Sarah. "I was three years old. Every week they would put us on the scale and call out our weight so everyone could hear. By 13, I was anorexic. And then I started eating and couldn't stop. I became bulimic." "For me it was the mirrors and being in leotards and tights," said the former dancer we'll call Leah. "It was seeing the parts go to the prettier girls. I thought: 'If only I were thinner."

So whats the solution


Prevention
What best way to combat Anorexia than to start with the basics?

Prevention has been classified into three types: primary, secondary, and tertiary. Primary prevention is aimed at reducing the incidence of a disorder, secondary prevention is focused on reducing the duration of a disorder through early diagnosis and effective treatment, and tertiary prevention is aimed at reducing the impairment that may result from an established disorder.
Of these three, we should be aiming for primary prevention.
Shisslak, Catherine M., Crago, Marjorie, Neal, Mary E., Swain, Barbara. Primary Prevention Of Eating Disorders. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, Vol. 55(5), 1987.

How?
S

Prevention can begin at school, especially since teenage girls are at most risk of developing eating disorders. S A health program should be implemented to educate teens, which requires close cooperation with the proper authorities. Weight concerns and dieting are S attitudes and behaviors that teachers ought not intentionally or inadvertently role model to the impressionable young students in their care. (Yager)

junior high schools, high schools, and colleges. Families should be highly involved in the lives of their children to make sure that the risks are lower, especially since family relations can be a reason for the development of eating disorders.

Community education on the hazards of disturbed eating and extreme thinness could provide a counter-point to media stereotypes and to the unhealthy selfexpectations that these stereotypes generate. (Shisslak) Yager, Zali, ODea, Jennifer. A Controlled Intervention To Promote A Healthy Body Image, Reduce Eating Disorder Risk And Prevent Excessive Exercise Among Trainee education should be extended to ThisHealth Education And Physical Education Teachers. Health Education Research, Vol. 25(5) 2010.