The pressure to look good doesn’t just affect the young. No, no matter what age you are or stage in your life there is the ever present burden to meet unrealistic levels of perfection. To be the skinniest, prettiest, most fashionable, richest, most successful version of yourself that you can be.
The hardest part in this is now the trend for competitive dieting seems to be taking it’s toll on those who should be focusing on their health rather than their weight – pregnant women.
It is hard to open a magazine or paper without seeing an A-lister who has lost their baby weight in a matter of weeks or who is showing off a barely there bump with no weight gain anywhere else despite how far along they are suppose to be. Victoria Beckham is one such celebrity who seemed to put on very little weight in her latest pregnancy with her bump barely visible at the Royal wedding despite being seven and a half months pregnant. Then there are the models such as Miranda Kerr and Heidi Klum who are seen back in shape on the catwalk and back to the gym just weeks after their babies are born.
The problem is these images are unrealistic, making new mums feel they are somehow failing if they haven’t got their pre-pregnancy bodies back in a couple of months or if they put on too much weight while pregnant. In America they have even coined a term for it – Mom-orexia.
Well finally there is a voice both in the media and medical profession speaking out against this madness. Dr Nancy Snyderman, the outspoken resident expert on the Today show wants pregnant women to ‘get real.’
‘It’s irritating to me,’ Dr Snyderman said. ‘We want perfect babies, we want perfect bodies, we want perfect lives.’
Not gaining enough weight during pregnancy can have a negative affect on the baby. They can be at risk of long term developmental issues and hypertension.
‘You’re starving your fetus,’ she said. ‘At a time when we’re talking about Africa’s greatest famine in 60 years, I find this particularly vulgar. We have become cuckoo about self-loathing and hating our bodies. Pregnancy should be nine months of root beer floats and bliss,’ she continued, angrily. ‘Then deal with it afterwards.’
It is normal to put on between about one and three quarters to two and half stone during pregnancy but you shouldn’t expect to be back in your pre-pregnancy clothes for around a year after giving birth. The main thing to remember is it is important to eat healthily and exercise during your pregnancy but don’t overdo it as you are your baby’s only source of nutrients. And for goodness sake don’t let the pressure of celebrities who have personal trainers, chefs and a bad body image ruin this precious time.
[picture credits: Serge Melki; NBC]