Operation: Life

Archive for the ‘News’ Category

I’ve seen commercials for a new show called “Huge” on ABCFamily.

Some writers have called it “refreshing.” Others call it “sobering.”

I call it good intentioned. But we all know what that can lead to.

From my brief understanding (through commercials only) of this show, it’s about overweight teens at a “fat camp.” That’s pretty much all I know from the short tv ads, but the one statement stuck with me and bothers me… regarding losing weight, the main character says, “Why should I?”

This bothers me not because she should be 100 lbs, a size 00 or anything ridiculous like that. People are meant to be different shapes and sizes. Some factors cannot be avoided and some will never change. That’s not my point. It bothers me because that is NOT a healthy message to send kids and teens, who will likely be the largest audience of this show.

Why should you lose weight if you’re an overweight child or teen? Because it’s NOT HEALTHY to stay overweight that early on. Being overweight can lead to so many serious health problems. THAT’s why. Not because “skinny is cool” or because everyone should look like a model. But because of diabetes. joint problems. heart disease. high blood pressure. etc.

Before anyone crucifies me for my criticism of this show, I have not seen it yet. I would hope the creators would have a healthy goal in mind. In some ways, I think the show is good (hence my conclusion of “good intentioned”). I don’t think barbie-shaped characters with varying levels of plastic surgery should be the only “role models” on tv for young people. I think it’s important for teens of all sizes to realize they have worth and are loved by those around them…. however…. those who love them should care enough to want them to be healthy. And encourage them to do so.

I was not always healthy. I was overweight for most of my childhood and into high school. It was not until college that I began watching what I ate and exercising when I had the opportunity.  Now that my wedding is quickly approaching, I’m more conscious of my physical appearance than ever.

Does that mean I’m unhappy? No. It just means I’ve been more mindful of what food I put in my body (portions, snacks, etc.) and I’m more active (I try to workout 5-6 times a week. try.). Does this mean I’m super skinny? No. I’m “skinnier” than I have been in a long time but I’m no size 2. Does this mean I’m perfect? Not by any stretch of the imagination.

Do I feel better? A resounding YES. I’m no medical professional, but I’ve been sick less. My migraines have decreased. I’m at a healthier weight for my height. I have more confidence. I’m stronger and can exercise better (cardio-endurance-wise and range-wise) than I ever was or could before.

Conclusion: I will support ABC Family’s new show… IF. and only if. their overall message is healthy. Yes, all children should have self-esteem and confidence. But no one needs to sacrifice his or her health to do so.

I am typically not a “celebrity” follower. Yes, I enjoy movies and the occasional celebrity gossip but I’ve never been a consistent watcher of entertainment “news” shows or reader of entertainment-related periodicals.

However, I’ve noticed lately that plastic surgery seems to be the new diet/fitness/health “option.” And while I would never deny the ever-present question of “what are we doing to ourselves?”… I ask one more question… “what are we doing to our futures?”

We all know perfect bodies as seen in magazines, advertisements, and movies. We all have moments of envy (c’mon… let’s be honest. How could you NOT look at the typical celebrity and not think, “man, if only I could look like that.”). But when did looking freakishly UNhuman or UNnatural become the goal?

Case in point… Heidi Montag. As far as I know (because I honestly don’t know her “history” well), she became famous on tv from the show, The Hills. Since then she has undergone a series of 10 or so plastic surgeries. Yes, 10. No typo there. I caught a glimpse of her recently in a bikini & ho.ly.cow. Not only is she not as pretty as she was (the way God made her), but she looks like an alien. I fear her next step might be Michael Jackson-esque.

Some may say I’m just jealous of her body or her tiny waist or ridiculous bust-to-waist ratio. To them I say… pssht (complete with a little spit to emphasize my point). I may never have a perfectly flat stomach like her and I may get wrinkles in years to come. But… I can say that there is absolutely nothing plastic about myself. Everything I’ve done to get in shape has been my determination and hard work.

And another recent phenomenon I’ve noticed is a trend amongst Asian women who want to alter their eyes to be more round. Perhaps I’m biased but I’ve always thought their eyes were the most beautiful feature of an Asian woman. I can honestly say it is one thing about myself I would never change, even if I could. I heard one reason is that some of them are made fun of for having small eyes (even in their home countries). As someone who was teased for being different when I was younger… I know the pressure that can bring and the deep hurt it can cause. But when did almond-shaped eyes become undesirable?

I may be blessed with good genes, self-control, decent self-esteem, motivation, a good life situation or any other factor you may want to attribute to me… but I do not understand this new fascination with wanting to change EVERYthing about yourself. Even on days when I wish parts of my body could be different, I would not want to do a total overhaul on myself. And I certainly do not understand wanting to change a part of yourself that makes you beautiful.

This new obsession with looking unnatural sincerely unnerves me. I shudder to imagine what implications may arise in years to come.