The mainstream media has been brainwashing women with impossible standards of beauty for years. We’ve heard stories about how old Hollywood would force pills on teen actresses, forced them to smoke cigarettes, and would take food away from them so they would stay thin.
Nowadays those stories have turned into models eating cotton balls soaked in orange juice to stay full without eating.
The level of thin the media imposes upon us just doesn’t exist in real life. You have to go to extreme and often unhealthy measures to get the kind of look the media portrays as ideal.
Many images we see in the media show women with skeletal frames where their bones jut out, instead of showing what your typical healthy woman would look like.
Model and bi-coastal mixed martial arts fighter Mia Kang came out and shared her story about what it was like living as one of these “perfect” women.
Kang, who has appeared in Sports Illustrated, recently posted photos of herself as a U.S. size 2 and her current physique at a size 8. She also shared what it took for her stay a size 2.
“I hadn’t eaten solid food in 10 days and smoke[d] a pack of Marlboro Lights a day. I was obsessed with my collarbones, ribs and hip bones showing,” she said. “I was obsessed with having a thigh gap.”
Even so “the industry” still told her she wasn’t thin enough.
“I was told by the industry I never looked better but still had a little more weight to lose,” she recalls. “I hated how I looked so much I thought I was fat and lived in constant anxiety.”
Kang decided to drop out of this lifestyle after she was told to starve for a job, BuzzFeed reports. She took a 10-day vacation to Thailand where she discovered Muay Thai and began studying mixed martial arts.
Since then she’s worked on “re-programming” her mind into a healthy state.
“Eating disorders and body dysmorphia don’t just disappear but you can learn how to manage it and heal. You can re-program your thinking.”
Kang told BuzzFeed that she was moved to tears after seeing that size 2 photo and remembering how unhappy she was.
“I put the two pictures side by side out of curiosity to see how I’d changed. It reduced me to tears because I remember how miserable and insecure I was,” she said. “I hated myself and thought, even in that picture, that I was fat and hideous. I thought Sports Illustrated swimsuit were going to fire me from the shoot because I was so hideous.”
Kang admits that she still struggles with getting comfortable with and accepting her new larger frame.
“We all do, we all have insecurities. I spent my whole life thinking emaciated was beautiful, it’s not easy to then learn to love a curvaceous bigger body, but I’m doing it,” she continued. “I decided to share it. Everybody sees me as the tough chick, the fighter, the invincible. I want to show women being vulnerable doesn’t mean you’re weak, it means you’re strong.”
She now hopes to become a role model for women to be themselves and enjoy a healthy mental and physical lifestyle.
She wants to encourage women to love their bodies.
“I want to show women that it’s OK to gain weight. We have the pleasure of having fluctuating bodies, enjoy your curves, enjoy being a WOMAN,” she says. “We have one body and one life, don’t let your insecurities hold you back from happiness.”
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