In The News: Israel Bans Too-Skinny Models

by Lindsay Shapka in ,

In an attempt to curb the alarming increase of eating disorders among young women in their country, Israel passed a controversial law banning too-skinny models.

The government has banned any woman who has a BMI (body mass index) of less than 18.5 — or 119 pounds for a height of 5'8'' — from being in photo shoots, in ad campaigns, and on the runway.

Taking it a step further, they have also set legislation that requires models to present a medical record, no older than three months, that states that they are NOT malnourished by World Health Organization Standards. Even more impressive, ALL publications are now required to disclose when any images in their pages are altered to make the male or female models appear skinnier then they are in real life.

Though this is not the first time minimal weights for models have been set (Milan Fashion Week, Vogue, and the Council of Fashion Designers of America have done the same), it is the first time that an entire country has taken such a huge step, and set down legislation, for such a far-reaching ban.

According to the Jerusalem Post, "every year some 1,500 teenagers develop an eating disorder and 5% of those suffering from anorexia die each year." 

This ban seems like a huge step in the right direction, and it will be interesting to see if other countries follow suit.