To Eat or Not to Eat: the Fashion Industry

852 Words4 Pages
Eating disorders are a growing problem worldwide. There are many theories as to why eating disorders have recently seemed more common. The most recognized reason is the media, specifically the fashion industry. Fashion models are stereotypically very thin and not very shapely. Do runway models have a large effect on body image? Or is the issue more deeply-rooted? Janet L. Treasure, Elizabeth R. Wack, and Marion E. Roberts argue that the problem is directly stemmed from mass media. They suggest that the “size zero” ideal has led to disorders like bingeing and anorexia (Treasure, Roberts, and Wack section 1). Such eating disorders lead to other problems like decreased fertility, stunted development, and substance abuse. Not only are consumers at risk of developing unrealistic ideals, but, according to Treasure, Wack, and Roberts, so are the models. Models are often “judged and evaluated,” which can “increase the risk of developing eating disorders” (Treasure, Roberts, and Wack section 4 paragraph 2). If the strive for thinness could be stopped directly from the source, it would result in “benefits for all of society” (Treasure section 5 paragraph 2). Most eating disorders lead to being severely underweight. Being so underweight can lead to many health issues. It can stunt growth in adolescents, possibly causing osteoporosis. Poor nutrition can result in irregular or absent menstruation, affecting fertility. Lastly, the brain can shrink due to anorexia nervosa, with the possibility of not having a full recovery. Even a small change in “eating behavior during adolescence is associated with adverse health outcomes later in life” (Treasure section 2). The editor of the Nation Review, Fred Schwartz, disagrees, instead saying that eating disorders are rooted in genetic and physiological conditions. He also argues that eating disorders have been present long before

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