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What Lindsay Lohan Can Teach Us About Our Body Image Problem

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Lindsay Lohan 5'6", 118 lbs.

That's what her booking sheet says, according to TMZ, so I'm guessing that it is accurate because it is according to the jail's scale. That is really, really thin. However, when we look at Lindsay, do we think, "OMG the girl is emaciated!?" I don't, and I think that is a big problem. The images of her walking into the court look like she usually looks, not fat, not skinny, but slender. There is something wrong in our culture when a young woman with a BMI of 18.7 looks normal to us. A BMI of 18.5 or less is considered underweight and puts one at risk for health problems related to being too thin. Lindsay is just on the verge of being too thin. This is what 5'6" and 116 lbs. looks like.

2010-07-22-LindsayGoingtoJail.jpg
Lindsay Heading to Jail

Some of you might remember when she was way too thin. There was a time when she looked like she was anorexic. I don't know her, and I have never treated her. Perhaps it was more drug related than an eating disorder. The more Adderall and cocaine you do, the less you eat. The more cigarettes you smoke, the less you eat. She was taking Dilaudid as well. That is one of the strongest painkillers there is. It is also one of the main drugs that led to Elvis's death.

2010-07-22-ThinLindsay.jpg

Anyway, back to the weight issue. It is really a cultural and health issue. Body image disorders are rampant, and the obesity epidemic is widespread. If Lindsay were to gain weight, even 10 pounds, she might not get work as an actress, most likely not model, and we would all be talking about her weight gain. That has got to be tremendous pressure. I feel for her.

If being on the verge of too thin looks healthy or "normal" to us, and a plus size model is a size 12 with the average female in the U.S. being a size 14, something is really off.
This is Crystal Renn. She is one of our most famous plus size models, and she has recently lost weight. I think she is beautiful.

2010-07-22-crystalrenn.jpg

Here is Marilyn at one of her higher weights. Neither Marilyn or Crystal can walk the runway, model or get acting gigs right now unless they are considered "plus" size.

2010-07-22-marilynmonroe.jpg

What do you think?

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