Being Thin Does Not Mean Being Healthy: A Common Misconception.
Being Thin Does Not Mean Being Healthy: A Common Misconception.
Many people believe in this false-hood. People look at those who have extra weight on their frames, as less healthy then the size 2 walking down the hall, and I think this is a common, and not always correct misconception, TOO many people make in life.
Granted, it is not healthy to be morbidly obese, but it is also not healthy to be too thin and possibly malnourished, or improperly nourished, either.
Also what about eating disorders? They certainly are not healthy, and while a lot of thin women need no help, and are what some of us would consider as being ‘lucky’ or ’blessed’. There certainly are others who work at it hard, in positive ways.
There are still plenty of women though, who get thin by unhealthy dieting habits and eating disorders, but some of them you just can’t see any ill health effects from the outside. But crash dieting, abuse of over the counter diet pills, and of course full blown anorexia and bulimia, do take their toll on your health, and are BIG no-nos!
I always tell people you can’t really tell anything about a person’s health by looking at their outward appearance, unless it’s extreme like yellowed eyes, sallow skin, being skeleton like skinny, and just things that are extremely obvious. Our outer shells can hide many secrets, and so can a person, including eating disorders or unhealthy crash diets. A person’s weight, equalling their picture of health, is a fallacy.
Should we all strive to look like this? Is this healthy? I would say not.
(This is Miss Universe Australia 2009. It’s sad to me that this woman is being selected out of millions of our kind, as a representation; a beauty icon, for young girls to see and look up to. Frightening actually!)
Sure we can look at someone like Jillian Michaels and say, ‘WOW it’s quite clear she works hard on her body, she is likely a very healthy person.’ She is not the norm that we see walking down the street everyday, at least I don’t. I don’t know where you all live at, but clearly she works hard at her physique, and has an overall healthy lifestyle. Most people you can’t tell this easily.
I thought about writing this post when I was at Zumba class last night. There are women of all shapes and sizes there, which I love to see. Everybody trying to feel good, get some ‘me’ time in, have fun, and firm up. It’s a really good time, and an amazing workout. I looked around and at the point where I felt ready to drop, which happens every class, there are women, one almost twice my age whom I talk to, and some others, who clearly had more get up and go, then I did, and none of which are pencil thin, and most you couldn’t tell from the exterior that they were as fit as they really are.
They keep on going when I’m ready to fall over, and have by far more stamina, which I am working on increasing. I don’t get to go as much as I would like because of the kiddos, but I’m putting in the effort when I can, for both my body AND especially, my health. I mean I think the 63 year old next to me is a brick house. She takes 3 classes in a row, while I am sweating and zonked after only the one. Again, working on it. Does my physical shape, my slim exterior, mean anything here? NO. People assume it does, but they’re wrong.
Two girls said to me. ‘Why do you come here?’ I said. ‘I want to tone up, and just feel good really. I’ve wanted to do this for a really long time, I just needed the push.’ I thought it was a strange question, I mean why do THEY come here? The one girl said, ‘If I looked like you, I would sit on the couch and eat potato chips all day long.’ Yeah that would be healthy to do. What does that mean? Just another example in this world of how we are judged by our exteriors.
Another woman in the locker room said to me, ‘You don’t need this class, you are so tiny.’ Again, what does that mean? I may not be looking to lose weight at this particular point in time, but I am trying to get more fit, and they are not the same thing. People fail to realize this. I certainly can benefit from the classes more so then many other people in the room. There are many more ‘fit’ people in there then I.
Then another woman was telling me she goes to weight watchers as a lifetime member, though she’s not really heavy anymore, she still goes to buy the food and such, I guess to maintain. I said that I once called up Weight Watchers and Jenny Craig looking for some weight loss support myself, but was too shy to ever take action and go in, which is absolutely true, and she looked at me like I had twenty heads.
’Why would you have ever needed Jenny Craig.’ ‘Umm…because I have been heavier in life. I was about 40 lbs. heavier at a time, without being pregnant, and felt very unhappy inside my own skin.’ She seemed quite shocked, though I don’t know why. People assume if you are what they consider to be ‘thin’, not only are you healthy, but you have been like that forever, which is another misconception.
I have been at both ends of the spectrum, and at one very unhealthy end at that. I did have an eating disorder once upon a time, developed after some comments were made in my direction, and there wasn’t much purging involved, only once in a while if I felt like I really went too far and was over-stuffed, which is NOT ok, for the record. Not in any way, shape, or form, and very unhealthy, but I do admit to that when I was younger, and there were many meals I would skip, and I’d eat very little, and became extremely thin. Too thin.
I didn’t notice it. It honestly needed to be pointed out to me. I had suffered with a body image disorder most of my life, so I really couldn’t see myself the way that others did. My perception was distorted, but now if ran across a photo of me being like that, I think ‘man now that was unhealthy’, more so then I look at photos of being heavier and saying, ‘boy do I look unhealthy.’ I was for sure healthier at the heavier weight.
It just bothers me that people think this way. Personally, I’d rather have a few extra pounds and have curves then be a rail and have none. People shouldn’t strive to be thin, they should try to strive to be FIT. There is a difference. Not every thin person is fit, and not every heavy person is unfit. I have seen many heavy people who have amazing muscle tone, work out, and that is just how they are built.
We are all made differently, and it’s better to be fit then to be thin. Strive to adapt better eating and exercise habits to your lifestyle, and worry more about your overall fitness and health then the numbers on the scale. Try to gain muscle tone more so then counting your calories like a fanatic. Everything is fine in moderation, but don’t make yourself nuts, because stress can lead to over-eating, which the two often go hand in hand.
Fight to condition your heart through exercise more then say,’ using the remote control as a form of activity. Even for those who don’t have to work on it, you really do, because it’s not healthy to be inactive in general, despite your outer appearance, and what is brewing on the inside is what people around us cannot see, and you want to be brewing something really great, not a problem waiting to happen.
Some people eat right and workout and just can’t ever get down to the dress size that they want, while some fortunates myself not included, can eat whatever they wish, which also isn’t healthy, but you know the type, and their weights never fluctuate. Is one healthier then the other? YES!
The woman with some extra pounds on her frame that eats healthy and exercises IS healthier then a woman who is skinny without any exercise, and eats a load of junk, though if you put them in front of ‘society’s window’ and asked the viewers of this world to judge, they would pick the thinner person every time, as the healthier person.
Fit is fab whether small, medium, or large!
Case in point, extremes in general are no good. The overall moral of the story is DON’T make judgements..never ASS-ume, never be hard on yourself, we are all different so don’t bother comparing. Love yourself, encourage yourself, and fight far harder to be fit, then to be thin. Being ‘skinny’ should never be your ultimate goal….being healthy should be!
Go on & dance it up! I highly recommend it. Firms, tones, and clears the mind!
Thanks for stopping by friends!