Seeing Past Body Shape

Weight is something many persons struggle with. A person can be overweight or underweight, and while both are detrimental to an individuals’ health, it is essential to keep in mind that the number that a scale reads does not necessarily dictate whether or not you are overweight.

According to medical standards, a persons’ ideal or ‘healthy’ body weight can be determined by considering their height, gender, age, and/or BMI. While this technique is applicable to many individuals, there are a majority of individuals whose bodies do not abide by this classification system.

What society dictates as healthy and what you as your own person dictates as healthy are two entirely opposing forces. Society today is in the midst of a fitness craze, which is good to an extent, but it fails to address the issues and complications that can arise when a person exercises excessively without providing their body with the fuel it requires. Society today is also pushing countless diets and weight-loss fads, but upon deeper exploration of such diets and fads, it becomes apparent that many are conducted unsafely, and that many are furthermore short-term.

Take my sister, for example. Danielle exercises six days a week, and I consume triple the amount of food she does. She does not eat junk food, nor is she lazy or inactive, but she has been ‘overweight’ for most of her life. However, she is an incredibly healthy person despite what her body size may communicate. She can also kick my ass any day of the week when it comes to cardio. It is so crucial to acknowledge that despite what a person may look like physically, it is not always a representative of how healthy they are.

An overweight person can be healthy or unhealthy, and a fit/thin person can also be healthy or unhealthy. The most important way to approach this subject is to be in touch with your own body and how you think and feel about yourself. When we let society dictate the way we should appear physically, we let down our resilience and permit norms to manipulate us into thinking that we need to look a certain way in order to comply by what society dictates as ‘healthy’.

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