‘It’s really detrimental doing any kind of extreme fad diet’
Many women feel compelled to follow fad diets in the hopes of achieving certain beauty ideals.
However, doing so could be putting their mental and physical health at great risk.
Model and influencer Iskra Lawrence has spoken out about the harmful effects of extreme dieting, having tried her fair share as a teenager battling self-esteem issues.
Lawrence has made a name for herself as a body positivity advocate.
She currently has four million followers on Instagram and is the creator of everyBODY with Iskra, a programme designed to encourage people to live as healthily and happily as possible.
As a young girl with aspirations of becoming a model, Lawrence was very susceptible to the pressures instilled by society to look a certain way.
“I would look at magazines and the headlines ‘lose a stone in a month’ or whatever it might be and I would try the celebrity diets like the maple syrup diet,” she said.
“Me and my friends from school would take in these big litre bottles of lemon and pepper and maple syrup and try and drink that.”
In addition to restrictive eating regimes, Lawrence would also spend a lot of time exercising and obsessively measuring every inch of her body.
Putting her body through excessive exercise and unwholesome diets took its toll on Lawrence.
“Your energy is awful, your concentration is awful, your eyesight is blurry,” she told Fabulous Digital.
“It’s really detrimental to your mental and physical health doing any kind of extreme fad diet and abusing your body with exercise.”
At the age of 16, Lawrence was dropped from a modelling agency due to the size of her hips.
This led to the 27-year-old developing body dysmorphia and eating disorders.
When she reached out to a plus size modelling agency, she was told that she was too small in frame to be considered.
This rejection made her recognise the futility of attempting to mould herself into any kind of beauty ideal.
“It made me realise how much time I’d lost and wasted trying to fit into something that I wasn’t,” she said.
Lawrence chose to prioritise her wellbeing and the way she feels, and this ethos has helped her to become the self-assured individual that she is today.
Now she exudes confidence and self-love, regularly posting photos on Instagram celebrating her inner and outer beauty.
In January, she posted a photo of herself posing on the SAG awards red carpet wearing a dress with a slit up to her hip, with the caption: “Cell-u-LIT up the red carpet last night.”