A model named Liza Golden-Bhojwani has shared before and after pictures of herself taken three years apart to make a statement about the modelling industry’s unrealistic ideals on weight.
In the left image taken in 2013, Liza was at the “peak of fame” as a model. On the right is Liza now. Despite the fact that in the left photo Liza was the correct size and frame to be a fashion model, she describes how she would starve herself by only eating 500 calories per day while sticking to a strict workout regime, which led to a whole host of health problems.
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A little flashback Friday action for you. This caption will be long and won't fit, so if you'd like to read please find the rest in the comment section….The left side was me at the start of the peak of my career. My first proper fashion week where I was actually the size I needed to be. I was booking amazing shows that one never thinks they actually could, walking with girls who I once looked up to, it was a serious adrenaline rush…but after fainting one night in my apt whilst preparing one of my very low cal meals (I think it was 20 pieces of steamed edamame if I remember correctly), I called it quits with the diet and workout regime I was put on and decided I could do it on my own. I thought to myself, I can still be this thin, but I'll just eat a little more so I don't feel so horrible. Well, eating a little more turned into eating nearly a bag full of almonds, which then turned into eating full size meals, which then turned into a full blown binge. I was craving every single food you could imagine and I was giving in to every craving even though I knew this was such an important time in my career. I made it through NYFW okay, no one had noticed any weight gain, but by the time I had gotten the LFW I could see the pounds starting to show both in the mirror and on the measuring tape, but I kept quiet obviously not wanting to sabotage myself. I found myself going to the grocery store and picking up raw vegetables to try and make up for the near two week binge I had in NY, but I didn't see any weight coming off no matter how "healthy" I was eating and no matter how many workouts I fit in. MFW came and I knew I was bigger and by bigger I mean a 35.5in hip rather than the 34.5in hip I started with in NY, I played it cool and just pretended everything was normal. I did end up booking shows, Dolce & Gabbana being one of them. Which I afterwards received online criticism about my thighs looking fat…Anyways PFW came about, and I found it impossible to resist those chocolate croissants 🙊 I went on many a casting with one exclusive option being on my schedule, but after meeting the client I knew the reason for me not nailing the gig, my size…
I beat myself up for a long time, playing it over and over again in my head how I completely failed.
Liza tried to get in shape, but this time she did it without starving herself:
It was really a struggle, as I saw so many other girls just getting there so easily, eating whatever they wanted and barely working out while I was busting my ass.
I was back at square one. I really just couldn’t understand it at this point.
Bad luck? Or maybe I was just not cut out for this. Maybe I am not meant to be this person. Maybe I am not meant to be here.
I was really in a bad state of mind, negative, depressed, overly emotional. I was miserable.
One day I just thought… why am I fighting against my body? Why don’t I just go in the same direction? Stop forcing my own agenda and just listen to my body.
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38-31-43 … these numbers would have given me a heart attack a couple of years ago. But now, I'm nothing but happy with them ❤ Love your body & treat it with respect. #lovetheskinyourein #bodypositive #effyourbeautystandards #shineon #unretouched #naturallight Updated digitals by @thirdeyejedi
And that’s what I did, slowly slowly I was coming into my true body form. My natural self, not my forced self.
The picture on the right is me as of right now, my body as it is. Not perfect, not show ready or VS ready, not the best, but it is mine and my soul is happy. I workout 5 days a week, but there are times when I don’t due to injuries, or travels. And you know what? That’s just fine with me.
Because when I’m done I get right back to the gym happily! I do it solely for myself, not for my job anymore.
I eat what I want and I feel no guilt. And for me that’s a good feeling. Maybe I wasn’t made to be on the covers of magazines and shooting the biggest and best brands, but I was made for a reason.
What a truly inspirational story. Now more than ever does this message need to be promoted. Young girls in particular are being presented from the get-go with unrealistic ideals on physical appearance and body shape, which is leading to an increase in anxiety, depression and eating disorders. In reality, Liza is far healthier on the right picture, but the beauty industry would only pick her for a job if she was at the unhealthy weight. This needs to change.
For more body positive models changing the perception of beauty, click HERE.