Saturday, January 19, 2013

When I am 85,

I'll look back and understand that people change, cultures change, the environment will change and this all has an affect on our bodies.



Marilyn Monroe, Sofia Loren and Elisabeth Taylor all had three things in common; shapes more hourglass than average, larger than average busts, and big smiles. Here are their measurements and what size they would be if they bought a Ralph Lauren polo shirt and pants form their Blue Label Line based on 2013 size charts. Plus, three modern women, two actresses and a plus size model, to compare too.



Using Ralph Lauren's "Blue Label" Sizing Chart on Their Website

Person
Bra/Bust
Waist
Hips
Polo Shirt
Pants
Elisabeth Taylor
36 C
21.0
36.0
10
4
Marilyn Monroe
36 D
23- 24
35-36
10
4
Sophia Loren
38 C
24.0
38.0
12
8
Julia Roberts
34 B
23.0
34.0
6
2
Jessica Alba
34 C
24.0
34.0
6
2
Jenifer Aniston
34 B
24.0
34.0
6
2
Beyonce
37
26.0
38.0
10
8
Angelina Jolie
36 C
27.0
36.0
10
4
Christina Hendricks
38 D
30.0
36.0
12
10*
Laura Wells (Model)
36 E
32.0
42.0
10
Plus 12

*She would have to buy to her larger measurement and have the pants altered to fit her
hips.


I think what is more interesting is that women in the 1950’s, at least in England, had a small waist and bigger hips naturally. Here is a quote from the article, “Modern woman not as shapely as they like to think.” Telegraph Hill:

“…classic hourglass figure of the 1950s, when a woman's average waist size was 27.5in and her hips 39in, giving a much more curvaceous silhouette.”

Did you read that…they actually said that the women had 39 inch hips on average! Our hips today are on average 36 inches. So, if our hips are 3 inches smaller you would think we would be slimmer, I would. But our waist size is…you got it, almost 3 inches bigger on average or 30 inches. We are actually roughly the same in weight, it is where we store our fat that has changed.

The article from Telegraph Hill continues, “Studies show that working women are thicker around the middle! Dr Marilyn Glenville, an expert in women's health, said: ‘Our waistlines have ballooned – women are fatter around the middle than ever – and our stressful lifestyles are to blame.’”

I wonder, though. The issue I have with this quote is that, besides saying that an average of 3 inches around the middle, but 3 less on our hips is “Ballooning”, can stress really keep us the same weight and simply move the fat around? Or could it be that a woman working at home, who may be lifting the laundry basket from the floor, or standing at a counter supporting their bodies from their legs, rather than say sitting at a desk and lifting their arms which is supporting their bodies from their waist - could really be part of the change? Yes, our hormones really do change where our fat it stored, and due to healthier diets and exercise (causing the fat off our buts to melt away) our middles are the destination for the fat we naturally would store, but in a less healthy location…near our livers.

“When we are stressed the body releases extra energy in the form of fat and glucose, to prepare us for the "fight or flight" mechanism, but unless you do something physical it is redeposited as fat around the middle of your body. [Dr. Glenville] ‘The reason fat targets the middle is because it is close to the liver where it can be quickly converted back into energy if needed.’”

"Scientists who study waist-to-hip ratios – the waist measurement divided by the hip measurement – say a ratio of 0.7, enjoyed by women such as Sophia Loren, Marilyn Monroe and Elizabeth Taylor at her peak, is most likely to be attractive to the opposite sex. But the survey, commissioned by [the] health and beauty event the Vitality Show being held in London next month, revealed that modern women, on average, have a waist-to-hip ratio of 0.83. It found that even women who have the 'butternut' figure today have slightly larger waists than the 1950s hourglass, although they are also more aware of healthy diets and exercise so are less likely to carry as much weight on their hips.”

 And….

“Sally Stubbs, a psychotherapist, said: ‘The butternut squash shape is considered the Western conception of the ideal, so it's understandable that women would want to view their bodies in this way.’ The reality is that only about 8 per cent of women have a truly hourglass physique. ‘In the past women were more likely to wear boned corsetry to manipulate their weight distribution and this may be why the figures from the 1950s show such a drastically small waist.’ Women need to be more realistic – particularly those of us who have had children – and accept the assets and flaws of our bodies."

So, in the end 92 percent of women are destining to not be squashes, simply because they choose to or need to have full time, or more, jobs. Of course the girdles worn by woman, and some men, in the 1950 helped, but only so far. (Not to mention that BMI index was developed in the…wait for it…1850’s ! And modified in the 1970’s.) My thinking is this, this extra fat on our middles is not healthy, but also cannot be lost through traditional exercise, lipo is only temporary. So, how do we lower the stress level at work? What little things could you do to lower your stress level at work? What about around the house? For me, I started from the time the kids were babies…having my husband take them to the park or grandparent’s house on Saturday mornings and I sleep in! Hey, we are a team, and I require team work on a team.

PS: Did you notice that the Blue Label’s sizing is targeting the 1950’s shapes?