CHICAGO, Oct. 9 Size-zero models gracing advertisements and magazine covers and the airbrushing of models' flaws to create the "perfect" woman are nothing new. For years, the practices of the fashion industry have shaped unrealistic and very unhealthy body images for women of all ages. But according to Kimberly Dennis, M.D., medical director at Timberline Knolls Residential Treatment Center, a recent Ralph Lauren advertisement crosses the line with its feature of a retouched photo of a model so emaciated that her head is larger than her waist.
"The standards society as a whole projects to our young women are unfair, unrealistic, dangerous and even deadly," said Dr. Dennis. "Advertisements like this most recent ad by Ralph Lauren are blatantly irresponsible and send damaging and deadly messages to girls and young women across the nation."
Dr. Dennis added, "The continued importance and pressure society places on being thin, especially for women, can take a toll on someone already susceptible to life threatening illnesses, like eating disorders or depression, and can also trigger feelings in someone who has never struggled before. While we recognize a small number of magazines and fashion shows have already taken a positive step in addressing the 'skinny model' problem, we urge the fashion industry as a whole to re-evaluate the inhuman images they continue to promote."
As many as 10 million females and one million males are fighting a life and death battle with anorexia or bulimia, and another 25 million are fighting a binge eating disorder, according to the National Eating Disorders Association. Eating disorders are usually shrouded in secrecy, but those who are suffering need to know that reaching out for assistance is the first step to getting back on track.
Located just outside Chicago, Timberline Knolls is an innovative residential treatment center designed exclusively for women. The center specializes in helping women ages 12 and older, offering treatment for eating disorders, substance abuse, co-occurring disorders and mood disorders.
SOURCE Timberline Knolls