Celebrity body transformation promotes unrealistic body standards

Recently, Kim Kardashian lost 21 pounds. Her weight loss became the main topic for many lifestyle magazines and online articles.

Kardashian is famously known for her curves and plastic surgery procedures to achieve the ‘ideal’ body. Her weight loss sparked a world-wide conversation – is thin back in?

Celebrity body transformations like Kardashians’ promote unrealistic body standards.

This is a problem because the drugs, diets and procedures are not available to the average person.

This can cause damage to vulnerable individuals – such as anyone battling eating disorders (ED), body dysmorphia and depression.

Body dysmorphia, a mental health condition related to concerns about flaws in appearance, often stems from comparing one’s self to celebrities and influencers who preach and promote unhealthy lifestyles.

Although social media and the internet is a common hub for setting trends, it is also a space where people are influenced by unachievable standards of beauty.

The negative representation and unrealistic standards of females with curvy hips and small waists result in these eating disorders, which are among the most common illness affecting young women.

According to the National Eating Disorder Information Centre (NEDIC), eating disorders are a large public health issue in Canada.

Celebrities like Kardashian, Kylie Jenner and Bella Hadid follow strict diets, such as the Atkins diet, a diet that restricts carbohydrates – a nutrient that provides the body with glucose, and is later converted into energy.

Such diets are difficult to follow and result in binge eating disorders or an unhealthy relationship with food.

Although promoting a healthy lifestyle is great, the way many celebrities lose the extra pounds is often unhealthy and unachievable for the average person.

Tiktok influencers recently shared their ‘secret weight loss drug’, Ozempic, which is a medication made for Type 2 diabetics.

Ozempic is an injectable medication that manages blood glucose and insulin levels. However, the primary side effect of this drug is a drastic decrease in weight at 14.9 per cent.

Rumours circulated on social media of Kardashian using Ozempic to help her lose weight, which resulted in a high demand of the drug.

Now, there is a shortage of medication causing issues for diabetic patients.

Kardashian also promotes “tummy tightening” treatments and recently reversed her Brazilian Butt Lift (BBL), a trend that she started in 2014 after her famous Paper Magazine shoot was launched.

Due to social media, BBLs have become the world’s fastest growing cosmetic surgery, according to a 2019 study from The International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery. For cheaper alternatives, people visited other countries to get the surgery, which either resulted in a botched surgery or death.

As of 2022, many online publications and social media influencers are asking if the BBL era is over because of Kardashians’ decision to remove her Brazilian butt lift.

When celebrities go through drastic body transformations, it becomes the most popular topic. This is where people are influenced to meet the current ‘acceptable’ standard of beauty.

It is no surprise women’s bodies are still a conversation in the media. During Hollywood’s golden age in the ‘50s, an hourglass figure was the beauty standard.

In the 2000s, heroin chic and size zero were trending.

In this era, we see media organizations still highlighting celebrity body transformation as a trend.

As a society, we need to stop promoting celebrity weight loss and procedures as it contributes to eating disorders, mental health issues and even death.

It’s time the world realizes, our bodies are not a trend to be followed – fight against the narrative ‘thin is back in’.

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