By KATE LEAVER
The two most commonly used adjectives to describe Jennifer Aniston are ‘svelte’ and ‘lonely’.
It’s obvious that she’s smart, funny, talented and beautiful. But every magazine editor in the world insists on defining this woman by her toned body and her relationship woes.
She is just svelte and lonely.
For a long time, I thought Jen Aniston had lost control of her own image. That she had no way to police the way we speak about her – as though she’s just a body with a string of failed relationships.
Then she did this.
She revealed her “ideal weight” in an interview with Yahoo Beauty. The already tiny actress confessed that she’d “ideally” be several pounds lighter than she currently is, but that it’s harder to lose weight now she’s in her 40s.
She also confesses that she ate a bagel before her interview. It was a real hard-hitter.
But here’s the thing. Jennifer Aniston is already technically underweight. Pop her dimensions into a BMI (Body Mass Index) calculator and she’s below the healthy weight range. In this interview, she says she wants to go further away from that healthy range.
Mamamia has decided not to publish Jen’s current weight, nor will we convert her “ideal weight” into kilograms for you. It’s not something responsible media outlets do — eating disorders experts beg us not to publish details like that, especially when it’s one of the most enviably beautiful women on the planet talking about wanting to be thinner. It’s just not on. It’s dangerous information for vulnerable women and it promotes the idea that a woman’s worth can be measured on a set of bathroom scales.
Never mind that Jennifer Aniston has vowed not to do Botox. Never mind that she’s said some pretty cogent things about the pressure to be ageless in Hollywood. Revealing those details about her weight undoes any of the good stuff she said.
Because, apart from promoting a Thin Is Best/ Thinner is Better mantra, Jennifer Aniston has just done something remarkable silly.
She just gave the tabloid media who hound her every move permission to define her in numbers. She just approved the callous, shallow way the media speak about her. She didn’t have to reveal her current weight or her “ideal weight”. The interviewer actually only asked “Do you eat bread ever?” and that got her talking about weight.
It’s frustrating to watch this capable, accomplished woman encourage everyone to define her by the number of kilograms she weighs.
If she does that in the privacy of her own thoughts, fine. That’s a matter for her and her celebrity therapist. But by publicly suggesting that she would be happier a few pounds lighter, she just makes it harder for us to stay realistic about body image.
It’s sad. Because this woman is so much more than svelte and lonely.
Here she is being beautiful and interesting and successful, for a start.