In Hunger by Naomi Wolf, she states the horrifying fact and influence anorexia and bulimia have in the western world. Dubbing it as a “disease”, that has “no medical reason” [Naomi 179]. She looks at the broadly appalling numbers of how “90 to 95 percent of anorexics and bulimics are women” [Naomi 181] and how there are “6,00 new cases yearly” [Naomi 183].
The proceeding to touch on how no only are there over 3.5 million mentally distraught women starving themselves, but that this disease is a “deadly one” [Naomi 182]. How our society can just ignore the affects social media and the unrealistic expectations created for women is baffling.
“Five to 15 percent of hospitalized anorexics die in treatment”, that is one of the highest fatality rates for a mental illness. [Naomi 182]. It is without a doubt that no matter our age we will never be truly happy with our weight, but the fact that Naomi is trying to pin point is – we are killing ourselves! From an early age we are inundated with millions of photos of pin thing girls and Cover Girl models.
We all see the amount of articles written about what “works” to lose the “baby fat”. This makes us think that there is something truly wrong with our bodies. There are cases where children whom are 12-13-14 years old have anorexia or bulimia…. They are willingly harming themselves and going hungry.
This is due to our society’s obsession with food. “Western women who cannot ‘choose’ to eat, we see the continuation of an order, poorer tradition of women’s relation to food.” –“Women have always had to eat differently from men: less and worse.” [Naomi 190]. Social media portrays “beautiful” to be those who are on the 1000 calorie diet or whatever non-existent of a morsel diet is “in” at the moment.
An average day for any person sees about bout two thousand impressions relating to any form of a imposition of “beauty”, “makeup”, “forced-expectation” or “diet” advertisement. Whether it be on our phones, TV, Music ads, billboards, or flyers, we are all still becoming normalizing our thoughts that being thin is the only way to be “beautiful”.
We are blinded into believing that our bodies are disgusting and the products sold to us by these companies will solve all of our problems. This is the belief that our bodies are products to ourselves, shells we can shape and change as we please. That simply buying products we can alter ourselves to match society’ expectations. I’m shoot a throwback to my previous post about Fat Shaming and how disgusting this idea of being fat has become]
Women go out on dates and hang with friends- but only eat salads or appetizers. Counting calories and wanting to make others see them as not being ‘fat’. The hunger that our society deems as the ideal standard and an almost unobtainable perfection is exactly what “drives the hungry person to obsess about food” [Naomi 195].
Women will routinely go hungry for the hope of being in that group of people whom are considered model perfect – that are deems as having 15-20% less fat than the average American. “The pressures of beauty pornography and the pressures of achievement combine to strike young women where they are most vulnerable: in their explosion of their sexuality in relation to their sense of their own worth.” [Naomi 21]