Dear Huffington Post,
I recently saw your article titled “Biggest Celebrity Slim Downs of 2010.”
These sorts of articles are pretty run of the mill, and as someone who too writes gossip on the internet, I understand how tempting it is to showcase celebrity weight loss. We, as a society, idealize celebrities and when those people in the public eye make healthier choices it can be hugely inspiring for regular folks. The problem is that many of the celebrities you highlighted for resisting “those on-set buffet spreads” and “cut[ting] the fat” were neither overweight, nor healthy in their weight loss.
Let’s take for example the before and after picture you posted of Bethany Frankel:
On the planet I come from “pregnant” is not synonymous with “fat.” Similarly, giving birth does not constitute a diet.
I am also slightly concerned about the pictures you chose to use of Christian Bale and 50 Cent, both of whom lost excessive amounts of weight to play a drug addict and cancer patient respectively:
Touting the extreme weight loss associated with substance abuse and extreme illness is most definitely not something to highlight as one of the “perfect bodies” that “Hollywood demands from its stars.” I assure you, those suffering from those illnesses in real life feel anything but perfect.
Additionally promoting the 20lbs, an already extremely thin, Natalie Portman lost for ‘Black Swan’ as admirable, or quoting Anthony Hopkins regarding his severely restricted diet “I’m in the gym six days a week, I power walk, live on 800 calories a day” as healthy is deplorable.
A diet of 800 calories a day for an adult, male or female, is extremely low. It is never recommended for an adult to eat less than 1200 calories a day…ever. Such an extremely restrictive caloric intake can be detrimental to organ function and overall health. It is not, as you say “dedication,” it is disordered.
This is, as far as I am concerned, irresponsible journalism. What kind of example are we setting for young people when we tell them that being pregnant is like to being fat, and that an emaciated physique is one that should be coveted at all costs…extreme costs. I’d also like to state for the record that “fat” is not something to be shunned societally like the Ebola virus, perhaps if we stopped treating it as such the people we put on a pedestal would no longer have to starve themselves for our continued acceptance.
Here’s what a diet of much more than 800 calories a day looks like. Still healthy, not crazy. Anthony Hopkins, eat your heart out, then eat a sandwich!
Oatmeal with lite sour cream
Broccoli and tofu stir fry over brown rice
Grilled tuna steak with brown rice, zucchini, red pepper, and pineapple