Underweight Model Ban in Israel

By Lissette Talledo

The Israeli government has passed a law which bans the use of underweight models. Publications will have to specify if the image has been manipulated to make the model appear thinner. Models in Israel are now required to have a Body Mass Index (BMI) of at least 18.5 percent. They will have to present updated medical records of their weight when applying to jobs. Supporters say the images of underweight models contribute to eating disorders in young girls. In Israel currently, around 2 percent of girls ages 14 to 18 have severe eating disorders. Critics say the focus should be on the model’s health instead of her weight since some are naturally thin.

1 Comment

  1. DeAngelo H. said,

    April 4, 2012 at 11:51 pm

    Eating disorders such as anorexia and bulimia stem for negative perceptions of ones own body image. However these perceptions wouldn’t be as strong if it wasn’t for mainstream media and advertisements. Israel has taken a historical step in addressing the root of the problem. By making it mandatory for models to have a 18.5 body index Israel is minimizing the amount of young women who strive to look like the models in the magazines with unrealistic measurements. This would be a great piece of legislation to implement in the United States where young women are routinely bombarded with images of hyper-sexualized and photoshoped images of idealized mythical models.


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