Just recently, I noticed they were screening the life story of Karen Carpenter - one half of the popular group "The Carpenters" on one of the True Movie channels and it got me thinking about the unrealistic expectations for women to be pin thin in modern times.
What a very sad state of affairs where Karen was concerned. She passed away at a young age - 32 in fact - from a heart attack which was brought on by years of excessive dieting, causing untold stress to her heart. Karen was never genetically geared to be slender but it seems that one typically irresponsible comment in the newspaper set her on the road to self-destruction when a reporter called her the "chubby" sister of the Carpenter duo.
I'm not for one moment suggesting we should celebrate obesity but nor should we realistically be condoning skeletal-like physiques.
European and American women, by and large, are consistently preoccupied by how much they weigh thanks to a "diet" of airbrushed images of the so-called perfect woman. These are images that very few can live up to and some set themselves on a very dangerous course to achieve the perfect physique.
As someone who had been unnaturally slim for the first 30 years of my life thanks to an undiagnosed overactive thyroid gland, I have been on both sides of the fence. Once my thyroid was treated I began to gain weight and now have to mind what I consume so as not to gain too much. The question is, how much is "too much"?
Few people realise that the 1950's pin-up Marilyn Monroe was a European size 16 which, in today's society would be considered bordering on obese. It's tragic.
Karen Carpenter was 5'5 or there abouts and sustained a weight of 120lbs until 1973. Is it worrying that I find that weight acceptable? I am 5'8 and weigh 113lbs. But when Karen got very weak she weighed around 80lbs which is decidedly underweight.
What do we find acceptable these days? Does society really want to see skeletal women on the catwalks? What do you men think is acceptable? I realise it is a very "close-to-the-knuckle" subject but I happen to think it is worthy of discussion and sensible discussion at that.
I'd like to also discourage younger members from dieting fads. It NEVER looks cool to be stick thin guys, seriously. Hopefully some members will confirm that curves are good (and I am working on getting some curves back myself)