Hearing words like you are too thin, too skinny, and not skinny enough to describe celebrities is nothing new. Celebrity lifestyle expert Laura Conrad has decided to completely ban these words from her website. Instead of using words that make all girls and women feel self-conscious, her website will use fitness terms like toned instead. Here is what Conrad said in her recent blogpost:
“When we’ve talked about getting in shape in the past, words like “skinny,” “slim,” and “thin” have often come up. Starting this month, we’ll be banning any body shaming terms from the site, and shifting the focus to words like “fit” “toned,” and “healthy.” We try do to this for the most part anyway, but now we’re making it official! The word skinny will now be reserved for skinny jeans. My editorial team and I had a long talk about it, and we want to make sure that the focus is on being fit as opposed to a number on the scale. Every body is created differently—and healthy bodies come in all shapes and sizes.”
Three reasons this matters for our daughters:
- According to a study from National Institute on Media and the Family, the evidence is overwhelming that girls are starting younger and younger believing they need to lose weight.
- In a survey of girls 9 and 10 years old, 40% have tried to lose weight, according to an ongoing study funded by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute.*
- One study reports that at age thirteen, 53% of American girls are “unhappy with their bodies.” This grows to 78% by the time girls reach seventeen.*
- In a Kaiser Foundation study, teen magazines currently focus on appearance:
- One in every three (37%) articles in leading teen girl magazines also included a focus on appearance, and most of the advertisements (50%) used an appeal to beauty to sell their products.
- Body Shaming has serious health implications according to the National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders:
- 8,000,000 or more people in the United States have an eating disorder.
- 90% are women.
- Eating disorders usually start in the teens but may begin as early as age 8.