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  #46   ^
Old Sat, Feb-16-02, 08:51
rustpot's Avatar
rustpot rustpot is offline
Senior Member
Posts: 1,110
Plan: atkins/protein power 1st
Stats: 269/278/210 Male 5 feet 10 ins.
BF:33%/30%/ ?
Progress: -15%
Location: Hertfordshire
Default seriously though

This thread has, through its twists and turns, brought out the underlying truth of body image and the damge that narcissum can do. I am convinced of the link between body image and dieting and how this is exploited by the dieting industry.

But it equally applies to cosmetic surgery, hair loss clinics, fashion etc. etc.

Body image, how we see ourselves, how others see us, is almost at the heart of our daily lives, whether we are being interviewed for a job or buying a new pair of designer trainers.

If it moves on to rule, or even ruin in the case of eating dissorders, then we have entered the realm of psychological dysfunction. Vanity is the nastier flip side of body image and implies a conscious, even morbid, pre-occupation with self image. Powerfull nevertheless.

Wa'il's post above illustrates clearly the many permutations of why someone chooses to remould their body, and what motivates them to continue. Our perceptions of self are rarely at one with how others regard us. We are the ones that look in the shop windows at our own reflection - the man walking the other way is not thinking "doesn't that bum look big in that dress"

Thus my little muse on being undertall, it is all in the eyes of the beholder.

I think it was Kipling who wrote
As a man walked down the road, down the road walked three:
The man you see, the man he is, and the man he would like to be

Last edited by rustpot : Sat, Feb-16-02 at 10:23.
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  #47   ^
Old Sat, Feb-16-02, 10:08
agonycat's Avatar
agonycat agonycat is offline
Senior Member
Posts: 3,473
Plan: AHP&FP
Stats: 197/125/137 Female 5' 6"
Progress: 120%
Location: Dallas, Texas

I have avoided posting on this thread do to the "too close to home" feeling it brought.

From the time I got out of high school to the time I hit 31, I allowed others to manipulate what I looked like. As I aged I still maintained 115 pounds at 5'7". I thought I looked too thin, however my over bearing, abusive and deceitful husband at the time kept calling me fat or over weight.

Ten years I bought into it. Ten years I struggled with eating disorders of one that wasn't pleasant. Bulimia. What I didn't throw up, I took laxatives to flush out. Surprised I didn't kill myself trying to maintain that perfect "trophy wife" figure. Turns out after all that struggling and damage I did to my body, the jerk was seeing someone on the side that was twice my size. So yeah this thread brought back some really heart felt moments of how we see ourselves and how others picture us.

Now my only goal is to repair some of the damage I have done by first starving myself and then going the other direction. To find a happy medium somewhere in there that my body forgives me for past wrongs and is satisfied with whatever weight *IT* feels it needs to be at. No more pushing from me.

Last edited by agonycat : Sat, Feb-16-02 at 10:13.
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  #48   ^
Old Sat, Feb-16-02, 13:05
Pete Pete is offline
Registered Member
Posts: 82
Plan: Dr. Bernstein
Stats: 268/198/205
Progress: 111%
Location: Toronto, Canada

the man walking the other way is not thinking "doesn't that bum look big in that dress"

The world would be a much better place if this were true, but I'm certainly not convinced it is. As you imply rustspot, the goal should be not to let a preoccupation with self image lead to self destruction. On the other hand, too much rationalization can camouflage reality too. As long as we can find and maintain that balanced perspective - it'll work out.
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  #49   ^
Old Sat, Feb-16-02, 14:22
tamarian's Avatar
tamarian tamarian is offline
Forum Founder
Posts: 19,508
Plan: Atkins/PP/BFL
Stats: 400/223/200 Male 5 ft 11
Progress: 89%
Location: Ottawa, ON

One comment regarding BMI (Body Mass Index): This is one of the most inaccurate tool to measure healthy weights. It relies only on your hight and weight. If you are broad shouldered, you need to lose muscles to fit that criteria. If you are small boned, you could be 30% fat, and be declared thin and lean.

If you calculate the BMI for world class atheletes, most of them will be decalred unhealthy and obese (and body builders would fall under morbidly obese).

There is no substitue to focusing on fat to determine how healthy is your weight. Losing muscle to satisfy the numbers based on weight and hight only would make your body sound good to insurance companies and government stats, but it's a false indicator.

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  #50   ^
Old Sat, Feb-16-02, 20:43
Pete Pete is offline
Registered Member
Posts: 82
Plan: Dr. Bernstein
Stats: 268/198/205
Progress: 111%
Location: Toronto, Canada

Further to tamarian's point, I believe the Health Canada website also cautions readers and was reasonably balanced in its presentation of the Body Mass Index. I'm not sure it's categorically a "false indicator" since there are ranges. I note that there is no differentiation between men and women on the index. By trying a few examples you will find that a 5'6" adult, (male or female) could weigh 155 lbs and be in an acceptable range, subject of course to all the provisos. An update is expected in the fall of 2002. Here's what it contains:

The BMI is a valid measurement of weight in relation to health. It is not recommended for use as the sole measurement of either body composition or level of fitness . Although the BMI is useful for creating guidelines for healthy adults (ages 20 to 65 years), it does not apply to infants, children, adolescents, pregnant or breastfeeding women and adults over 65 years of age.

The Canadian Guidelines identify four zones or ranges of BMI. The risk of developing health problems increases the further weights are from the generally acceptable range.

For more information about the BMI Zones and how to calculate your BMI please refer to the BMI calculator at

Note that the Canadian Guidelines for Healthy Weights were not developed for use with pregnant or lactating women, highly muscular individuals or endurance athletes

Last edited by Pete : Sat, Feb-16-02 at 20:54.
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  #51   ^
Old Sun, Feb-17-02, 09:27
MaryB MaryB is offline
Senior Member
Posts: 166
Plan: Atkins
Stats: 200/174/135 Female 5ft 3in
Progress: 40%
Location: Rural Kansas


I've found your story to be very heartfelt and wellspoken. Congratulations on your achievement and may you continue to maintain a "healthy" weight that satisfies your vainess! LOL! I must admit that I was a bit taken back by your word choice, but must also admit that I have more than my share of it! While not the sole OR the main reason I started LCing, a healthy degree of vainess has certainly been prodding me onward! Visualization has been a proven technique in many areas of life - top athletes use this all the time!

I also hope that in your daily routine, when you come into contact with "large" associates, you remember how it is to wear those shoes. Shame on the collegues that placed your self worth in your image, not your capabilities. Your realization of this flaw in society's view can be beneficial in the future. Good luck!!

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  #52   ^
Old Mon, Jul-28-03, 10:11
Quest's Avatar
Quest Quest is offline
Posts: 12,116
Plan: Atkins
Stats: 255/187/150 Female 5'0
Progress: 65%
Location: Chicago area

In what sense is "vanity" a pun in the original post?
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  #53   ^
Old Tue, Aug-19-03, 13:44
Dstar96920's Avatar
Dstar96920 Dstar96920 is offline
Contributing Member
Posts: 710
Plan: Atkins-ish
Stats: 217/170/155 Female 5/5
Progress: 76%
Location: Georgia/Florida
Smile Guilt

Ok, I refuse to feel guilty because I am doing lc to lose weight and LOOK BETTER. Yes, I admit it, I chose to lc because I would lose weight. I like it when I look good. No, I love it when I look good, and feel more attractive. I know that is vain. So what? To each his own. Good for you Pete! And good for ALL of us for deciding to do something to make us feel and yes, look better!
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