A recent survey of 2,000 readers by†More†magazine discovered that women spend an average of†£2,422 per year†on gym membership, exercise DVDs, diet foods and supplements†in the quest for the body beautiful. Since the average annual sustained weight loss of those surveyed was 3lb,†each pound in weight cost £807 to lose.
That wasn't the only price to pay.†More than half of those questioned said that, to them, a diet meant eating less than 1,000 calories a day, while more than a fifth cited less than 800 calories. A third had taken slimming pills to lose weight, another third had made themselves sick, and nine out of ten had gone at least a day without eating. Eighty per cent of†More†readers dreamed of being a size 10 or smaller.
The cost of a lifetime spent pursuing the holy grail of the 'perfect' figure hits more than our pockets. While we're busy shrinking ourselves - often by the unholiest of methods - for more palatable public consumption, we have no time to attend to the hunger we're desperately denying we feel.†And that hunger is about much more than an empty stomach.†For many women, a diet serves to control more than just an appetite for food; it's a way of symbolically handling our†hopes†and our†fears, of†suppressing our†appetite for life. And, ignore the pangs as we might, like a growling tummy,†innermost needs eventually demand nourishment.
By Sophie Boss Psychotherapist
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