Thumb big a d0139 000581 ip lr

Do you have an ideal weight?

The weight you think you should be?

Often the weight we think we should be is influenced by an ideal body shape imposed by the media, television and social standards, with ideals and aspirations influenced by images of celebrities who have what is considered as the ‘perfect body’.

But do these factors take into account our true weight and that we can develop a positive image from the inside out?

BMI SCALE

For some, ideal weight will be dictated by the body mass index (BMI) scale – diet companies set goal weights based upon this scale. However, the BMI scale is a poor reference for individual body size – it fails to consider that we are more than our height and weight and that our bodies are culturally diverse.

The BMI scale was based upon insurance company information in the 1940’s about the mortality risks of 25 year old clients in reference to their weight[i].

The adoption of this standardised ideal weight meant that overnight, half the population were suddenly considered overweight.

One thing is certain: population figures are not a good guide for individual perfect weight.

What the BMI scale said was that there was an ideal weight that we should be. It has served to reinforce body-shame and self-loathing for all those who do not readily fit within a healthy weight range, and has made many have unrealistic expectations of the weight they should be.

The BMI scale made everyone believe they were fat and should go on a diet.

For all the diets that have been offered by the diet industry, and for all the daily focus on weight, the population in most western nations is getting fatter. The population is actually getting further and further from an ideal weight, along with the associated problems of poor health alongside self-loathing and shame.

Now we really DO have a problem

An ideal weight can be imposed by what we see in magazines and on TV. For some of us, an ideal weight will be imposed on us by the pictures we see in magazines of models and celebrities. Such body shapes are impossible for most to attain and, what is more, the images are digitally enhanced by computers using photoshop and airbrushing[ii] so we do not see a real image or a presentation of a real body. We cannot computer-generate changes to our own bodies.

This can set us up for poor self-image and self-loathing of our own bodies, as we cannot possibly measure up to the ideal body and the ideal weight.

The media has constantly bombarded us with an outer image to attain:

  • men with large muscles
  • overly slim or sexualised women
  • the perfect family
  • the perfect bikini body
  • portraying taller, slimmer, perfected versions of who we could be

What does this do to our perception of body image and the ideal body?

Does it change what we view as normal?

The ideal weight we aspire to may not be so ideal when we attain it. Not so visible is the fact that even people with what we imagine is the perfect body, who we believe are the ideal weight, are seeking to change something or are unhappy about the way they look. We are led to an outer pursuit of happiness, constantly striving to reach a goal we cannot reach – with ideals that entrap us into constantly wishing to change something and be more.

If you look at Kylie's story, you will see someone emerge from these imposed ideals to live her life as a true expression of who she is, not one of imposed beliefs.

If we look at the perfect athletic body we may not see the constant striving to achieve perfection and the misery of ...

  • the constant push
  • the fierce amount of training
  • the absolute devotion to making it all about the physical form
  • the draining of energy levels to appear strong and healthy!

There is no expression of inner beauty, only a constant striving to improve the outer shell to fit a certain ideal of what is accepted as beautiful, with little or no acceptance of a more natural and less defined body.

WHAT IS GOING ON?

If we live from an ideal that comes from the outside and we try to achieve it, we do so at the expense of who we are inside and lose our regard for this most important part of ourselves.

Here we take a different view of ideal weight – we consider that there may be a true weight that reflects who you are from the inside out, not what is directed and dictated from the outside.

"From the inner heart, we can make the body
what we truly are."

Serge Benhayon Esoteric Teachings and Revelations, p 91

As we develop a deeper understanding of how we have been influenced by external forces, and that there are other possibilities, we may also begin to accept and enjoy our true weight and let go of the idea that there is an ideal weight.

We can develop a positive body image from the inside out.

What is more, we may be able to do away with self-loathing forever.

On these pages we discuss these grand possibilities and hear the accounts of men and women who have made this a living reality.

References:

  • [i]

    BBC TV. The Men Who Made us Fat. 2012.

  • [ii]

    The Huffington Post. Photoshop 'Body Evolution' Video Blows Our Minds. Retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/10/30/photoshop-body-evolution_n_4170021.html

Filed under

Self-worthBody imageDietsBody awareness

  • Thumb small alison greig

    By Alison Greig, BA LLB(Hons), LLM(Hons, Grad Dip Psych, EPA Accredited Practitioner.

    Alison is a writer, life coach and a passionate advocate for true freedom of expression. Her legal and philosophical interests include regulation of cyber-abuse and cyber-crime, health care, freedom of religion and human rights.