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In the essay “A Certain Hunger”, by Maggie Helwig it shows how people can develop a negative body image about themselves because of the way society praise and glorifies models and “thin” celebrities. People would be more secure about themselves, if everyone would accept people as they are, and help the people who have these image problems before they lose control, lose self-confidence and lose hope in themselves.

Anorexia nervosa and bulimia are unexplainable and illogical conditions that affects the mind. People become so caught up in their looks that they do not even see the harm they are doing to their bodies. Although these behaviours seems irrational, to people who have never had to deal with anorexia or bulimia, people with these diseases do not realise the severe mental conditions that they are developing.

When an anorexic person looks in the mirror she does not see a skeleton staring back at her, but the imaginary “fat”she has convinced herself that she has. It is hard to see when a person has gone to “far”, because who is to say what too far is, because who knows what the perfect weight is. For that matter,perhaps there is no perfect weight. When a person

gets too thin, though, it is not simply enough to tell her that she needs to eat, she knows that she is getting to thin, but she has starved her body for so long that her brain is telling her that she does not want to eat and that food isn’t good for her.

In this day and age when no one in Canada should go hungry, let alone purposely starve herself, society is totally to blame. Models and celebrities are put on pedestals because of their looks. That is where mixed up conceptions about oneself are formed. Almost every magazine cover and fashion page presents skinny women showing off their bodies. For some unknown reason society has accepted theses skinny models as normal and as having the perfect figures. Now, it is becoming more acceptable not to be wearing a size three, but to be happy about the way one looks. However it will still be a long time before diets die out and people are comfortable wearing bathing suits to the beach.

In the past, society has helped out with problems by recognising them, not by ignoring them. However when it comes to anorexia and bulimia it seems as if society has turned a blind eye. These problems are occurring more often, and the help still is not there. We need to have more

people getting involved and staying involved. Also the helps needs to come along before it’s too late. Too often the symptoms go unnoticed and people are so ill that it is hard to get them to realise that they need help. Lives are at risk because anorexia and bulimia are not considered too be problems until it is to late. This horrific disease needs to be recognised and support groups need to be made more available. Society should be made more aware and should encourage people to get involved and should start taking responsibility for what goes on to the people who are part of it.

It is a strange place to live where people walk around so unhappy with who they are, that they would purposely hurt themselves, and risk their well-being for an almost unattainable goal. We need to stop pretending that everything is all right and start working on the problem that many people have to face everyday. These disorders have been around for a long time but have only recently been noticed as a problem, which was the first step. Anorexia nervosa and bulimia will not be going away until society changes its view on people and the way people are looked at; by recognising these as problems, we have taken a step forward. It may only be a single step, but every race and every journey through life begins with a single step and each step brings us a little closer to the goal that we have set for ourselves.


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