I hang out with a healthy bunch of friends. Crazy about exercise and eating healthy, few conversations go without the mention of calories, metabolism and recent studies on health and fitness.I have only recently begun worrying about my weight – ever since I looked into the closet and (really) had nothing to wear because everything was in a size 6 or 8 and I am now a 10!

So I’ve begun to count my calories , watch the fried foods and am planning to head back to the gym or enroll in a fitness class. (yeah, planning being the never-ending overused word here)

However, I do battle with my revived spirit of weight loss thanks to the ever-changing world of fashion.

Recently, anorexic model Isabella Caro, a 28-year-old model who made headlines in 2007 when she posed naked for anti-anorexia billboards positioned throughout Milan during fashion week, lost a battle to pneumonia.

She reportedly weighed 31kg at 1.64m tall when she was shot for the anti-anorexia campaign and already suffered skin lesions from the affects of the disease.

Isabella began modeling in her teens, and was told then she needed to lose weight.

She paid a high price at such a young age for the then perception of ‘beauty’, and in her last few years made it her quest to spread awareness on the dangers of anorexia.

Not too long after news of the billboards garnered global attention, Whitney Thompson won America’s Next Top Model 10, the first plus-sized model to achieve this in the history of the show.

The busty US size 10 model is an inspiration to busty and bigger girls out there who dream of breaking into the industry but don’t have the regular requirements for it.

Lately, designers and stylists have been promoting the use of more ‘regular’ looking girls in shows, a sign of the times, just as the beanpole Twiggy turned the fashion world upside down in her heyday, post busty Marilyn Monroe-types.

We can look at this from two perspectives: One, as accepting our figures the way they are, and being glad that fashion is finally loosening its tight grip on the waif image, or two, as accepting our figures the way they are, and letting go of all hope to lose weight and lead a healthy lifestyle.

Yes, we should promote loving our bodies and stop aspiring to be supermodel size when the process could take away our health.

But should we be allowed to see this acceptance of different shapes and sizes as an excuse to throw out the healthy diet plan and skip the gym, all because society is moving in that direction?

A friend once said to me ‘A fit person shows that he or she has discipline’ and she couldn’t have been more right. Way back in Uni at 21, I had neither flab nor discipline but the thought stuck with me and it rings true especially now.

If you can’t make the effort to care for your own body and health, how can anyone else trust you with other responsibilities? And why should they, if you don’t care enough about yourself?

What do you think? Is letting bigger models take to the runway and fashion pages  only going to open the floodgates and as a result, give young girls and women an excuse to let themselves go? Or will this teach society not to judge so easily, and in turn give everyone a healthier body image?

Tell us what you think!

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