The 2020 Super Bowl half time show didn’t fail to wow. The discussion afterward has been filled with references to the bodies of performers Shakira and Jennifer Lopez, age 43 and 50 respectively. If you are among the women feeling inadequate in comparison, here’s a helpful reframe.
Intuitive eating specialist Michelle Vina-Baltas reminds us on her blog that these women should be celebrated, but for reasons other than their bodies.
She says Shakira and JLo offer us a different view of motherhood and middle age – one where you can still pursue your dreams and wear what you want. They show us what happens when hard work, ambition, and confidence collide.
But we don’t know what they’ve suffered to achieve their body ideals. Every day celebrities come forward with stories of eating disorders, body dysmorphia, and the torture of extreme restriction. Michelle reminds us:
Diet culture would like us to believe that woman at any age can be thin and have a shape like JLo or Shakira if they just tried hard enough. This simply isn’t true. Research indicates that weight is very complicated and many factors influence a person’s weight, shape and size. Even if it were true, it often comes at a high emotional and physical cost.
It’s good to remember these points when talking about female celebrities, and to avoid comparing yourself and your body to theirs.
Jennifer Lopez images by Ana Carolina Kley Vita from São Paulo, Brasil [CC BY (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)]
Shakira image by Serenity [CC BY (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)]