Anytime a celebrity or major public figure undergoes dramatic weight loss, the public seems to raise its eye in disbelief that the process must’ve been anything but healthy.
“She must’ve starved herself.”
“We know she was in the bathroom after eating.”
“Look how small she’s gotten. We can see her ribs! She must have an eating disorder.”
While it’s certainly admirable for the public to care about the health of its favorite celebrities, not every dramatic weight loss story is a sign of an eating disorder. Eating disorders are defined as a group of conditions composed of abnormal eating habits that involve either insufficient or excessive food intake to the detriment of an individual’s physical and mental health. While the most popular faces of eating disorders have been ribs-protruding, young white women, the truth is that people of all body types, races, and genders suffer from these diseases. And moreover, newly-achieved thinness or dramatic weight loss is not an automatic diagnosis.
But what could dramatic weight loss be a sign of? Well, it could serve as evidence of a strict exercise and dietary regiment. It could be a byproduct of surgery. It could come from dieting pills. It could result from a lot of potential situations, including an eating disorder, but that shouldn’t be the first conclusion that we jump to.
If we look at the dramatic weight loss story of media-mogul Raven Symone, it seems like the media threw her newly-achieved thinner body under the bus. Countless publications accused Symone of having an eating disorder, getting surgery, or taking unhealthy dietary pills. Some even went as far to say that she was being a horrible example for young women, assuming that she didn’t achieve weight loss in a proper way. But all of these conclusions are pure speculation, as Symone has maintained that she lost the weight the good old fashioned way: diet and exercise.
On a more personal note, even when it comes to our friends and family, the same speculation often applies. If someone experiences dramatic weight loss, the first question most people ask is: “have you been eating?” Or they assume that a more selective dietary plan is a sign of self-starvation and thus, an eating disorder.
Is it better to speculate and be concerned about our loved ones and favorite celebs perhaps falling victim to an eating disorder? Or should we not be so quick to assume the negative? Perhaps, we should take dramatic weight loss at face value: a sign that someone put effort forward to lose weight.
Drop your thoughts….