I was on the treadmill this morning, and struggled terribly to catch my breath while running. In an attempt to distract myself, I turned the television on, plugged in my headphones, and started watching Kelly & Ryan.
I usually don’t watch morning television, and today reminded me of why.
Kelly Ripa is teeny tiny and perfectly toned. Viewers see her as having the “ideal body.” Ryan Seacrest appears to have a thin build, and muscular enough, also representing an “ideal body.”
As someone who has suffered from a significant eating disorder, their conversation on national television was triggering, and I can only imagine how it affected others out there, too. They reported it is National Doughnut Day, and referred to the plate of doughnuts next to Ryan as ‘sabotaging.’ Why sabotaging? Ryan shared that he is in the midst of a juice cleanse, and sat there salivating over the temptation of taking a bite. But, he took a firm stance and said he couldn’t. He proceeded to ask the audience if he took a bite, chewed it and then spit it out, would it count?
Ryan, this is a common behavior of someone who is struggling with an eating disorder. You suggesting that technique is either validation to someone that it’s a “normal” behavior or you are suggesting a new idea to someone which could lead to more harm.
The media is one of the major causes of the development of eating disorders. False and dangerous messages combined with the unrealistic body standards and unattainable body portrayed has created a body-hating culture.
And, if Ryan Seacrest and Kelly Ripa are doing a juice cleanse because of body dissatisfaction, can you imagine what everyone else is thinking?
Until people and shows like Kelly & Ryan use their platform to promote body positivity, our society is going to continue focusing on thinness, weight, and appearance. She ended the discussion what a one-liner about the importance of what’s inside us, but, unfortunately, their comments had already been engrained in the minds of their viewers. Instead, we should be encouraging people to accept and love themselves they way they are, embrace their differences, and make character an emphasis. As a result, we will all be healthier and happier.