An Excerpt from Hungry: A Mother and Daughter Fight Anorexia
A few stars are finally admitting to eating disorders, but girls still want to look like them—thin hangers for designer dresses. Some centers of the fashion industry have been scared into setting standards. After the deaths of two anorexic models, the fashion shows in Madrid and Milan agreed to ban models whose body mass index falls below what the World Health Organization considers healthy.
In the United States, the Council of Fashion Designers of America recognized the problem and formed a committee, which recommended "awareness and education, not policing." Meanwhile, tabloid magazines and websites run galleries of shame, with big yellow arrows noting problem areas in legs and butts, and photo contests like "Guess the Celebrity Cellulite! Can you tell the star by her dimples?"
Models, actors, and athletes set the pace, but at least one in every one hundred female adolescents in the United States is starving herself. Two-thirds of women students could be diagnosed with eating disorders at some point during college. College dormitories have their vomitoriums, where, everyone knows, a resident or two regularly throws up.