International No Diet Day is a day for celebrating diversity and embracing all forms of human life. It is celebrated on the 6th of May every year since its inception in 1992.
Fashion divides men into 4 distinct body types – Oval, Triangle, Rectangle, and Rhomboid. You can make out the differences in the various body types by looking at the illustration below. Even men are not exempt from body slotting and the rhomboid is worshipped as the epitome of manhood.
Further still , coming to the female gender, women are divided into 5 major categories based on the dimensions of the bosom, waist and hips. Namely these are – Strawberry ( inverted triangle ), Banana( Rectangle),Apple ( Big bosom and midriff ),Pear( heavier lower abdomen, hips and thigs) and Hourglass figure.
A look at Coveted body shapes through Ages
The Ideal beauty was one who had high, rounded, youthful breasts; slender yet muscular features; a small waist; wide hips and thighs; long, hairless legs; and red lips and cheeks. most people could not achieve this look, thus ancient Roman women resorted to cosmetics and belts to cinch their waist and emphasize their breasts.
In the 15th century, after the black Plague claimed millions of life. Fashion was more about looking healthy and fertile. Women in France and Burgundy would conceal a packed sack beneath their clothes to give the appearance of being pregnant.
The soft, rounded, and sensuous feminine figures were much in vogue in Rubens’ time . It was a celebration of chubby cheeks, slender limbs, and chubby arms.
Early Modern Period
After industrialization, the definition of beauty changed much faster.
In the 19th century, a woman was attractive if she had with narrow waists, high conical breasts and dainty feet . To achieve this unnatural look ,ladies wore costumes with voluminous starched sleeves and corsets with padding at breasts and hips.
Buxom breasts made a comeback as a symbol of hope and solace immediately after the world depression.
The post-war era portrayed a physical ideal for women that was extremely slender, had no defined waist and had very thin limbs. This androgynous appearance for both sexes challenged the 1950s’ social conformity.
Indeed , in the 1980s, the focus was on being thin, but not malnourished. Hence, muscle tone was crucial since it contributed to the 1980s “working woman” stereotype of an active lifestyle, particularly in the arms and legs. Aerobics ruled the day. The 1980s saw a huge increase in the popularity of gym wear, which included spandex, leggings, ankle warmers, and headbands. It was just as crucial to flaunt HOW you achieved that aerobics physique.
Kate Moss personified the “heroin chic “ anorexic look in the 1990s. Even those ladies who preferred not to be as trim as the supermodels embraced the lean appearance. Long, lean legs, angular bones, and a defined jawline were in vogue, as were short skirts. Subsequently a lot of girls started following this unhealthy trend and concerns started rising above their health.
The inception of International No Diet Day
In the early 1990s there was a lot of pressure to be thin , so much that the stick thin models with the collar bones and cheek bones jutting out ruled runways. It created an unhealthy trend towards eating disorders in young girls. Even Princess Diana confessed to suffering from Bulimia , an eating disorder.
As a countermeasure to this trend, a feminist movement called “Diet breakers “ was born in the United Kingdom. Mary Evans Young spearheaded this campaign that decried body shaming and urged people to embrace their natural body shapes. Since 1992 , 6th of May is being observed as International NO Diet day to spread more body positivity and encourage sustainable and healthy body images amongst youngsters.
“Personally, I think that the “ideal” body is the one you’re living in. Whether you are an apple or a banana or a peach, remember you are sweet and full of zest and that’s what counts.
Share this post if you agree with me. I welcome your suggestions and comments, go on make my day!
(This post is my contribution to BlogChatter’s Initiative #CauseAChatter where we talk about #MentalHealth )
Pics – istock, pexels