The Indian body image has been in a long-standing state of flux, with the country’s largest body-shaming and shaming movement now taking on an international level.
We spoke to some of India’s top body image experts and asked them what they thought.
The ‘biggest body shaming’ problemIndia’s most popular body image problem is the ‘bigger is better’ philosophy, which is popular among body-image campaigners in the West.
The theory is that a smaller, thinner body, with a less defined body shape, is more attractive to women, who value that shape and form over a more defined one, or an unrealistic body shape.
“I think there is a misconception that there is such a big gap between the ideal body and the reality of people,” said Gautam Bhagwati, co-founder of The Body Image Institute, a body image training program based in Delhi.
“It is not that the ideal shape is the ideal one, but that the shape is ideal for the individual.”
The ideal shape and shape are two different things, according to Bhagbati.
He points out that, for women, there is also a larger body-fat percentage, which indicates more body fat is needed to maintain healthy skin.
In India, the body fat percentage ranges from 5% to 50%.
It is higher in urban areas, where people are less likely to have access to private health clinics.
The average Indian woman has an estimated 8% body fat, and this percentage can be high or low depending on the area, as people are more likely to be thin, according the Indian Body Image Society (IBIS).
Bhagbatti, who has worked with celebrities, said the bigger the ideal, the less likely people are to want to put on weight, especially if they are in their 20s or 30s.
“In India, it is a trend that women in their 30s are doing really well,” he said.
“We want to see women of their 30 years old and 40 years old becoming more active.
We want to work with the community and say that this is a sustainable body-shape for women.”
The problem is that it is difficult to tell what kind of body the ideal is, said Karan K. Dhillon, MD, professor of nutrition, nutrition science and policy at New York University.
“For most people, their ideal body shape is a body that looks like a model, or a skinny body with an attractive figure, or very thin,” he told Business Insider.
“However, a very small percentage of women actually have the ideal size of the body.”
Dhillon added that the body-consciousness of Indian society is also influenced by the social media culture, which encourages people to see themselves as more than just their physical body shape or size.
The country has a huge number of body-positive Facebook groups, which can attract a large audience, but they are not necessarily popular.
“We don’t think of it as a body-negative society because we don’t want people to feel ashamed of their bodies,” said Dhillone.
“What we see is that women feel that they can have a normal body, they can wear jeans and T-shirts and still be beautiful, and not be too big.”
It is a myth that it’s easier to be happy with a small body, he said, adding that many women in India believe that they will be fat if they try to lose weight, rather than gaining it.
Dharon noted that there are many health benefits to not being overweight, and that people need to focus on their health instead of worrying about how they look.
“There are many studies showing that eating right is important for weight loss,” he added.
“It is better to get in shape, but people do not realise that it may also have an impact on your health.”
So, how do we become more aware of our body image, which in turn affects our health?
A healthy body is not always ideal, said K. S. Jha, MD of the Centre for Integrative Medicine, a non-profit that focuses on health and wellness issues.
“When people see that a person is a beautiful person, or they are confident, or that they are happy, they want to have a healthy body,” he explained.
“The problem with a body is that if you are not confident or happy, you will not feel confident or satisfied.”
Jha suggested a positive body image is more important than the ideal.
“A positive body is the way you want to feel.
It is what you want, and it is what your mind wants,” he advised.
The way a person looks and acts should not be a concern, but rather their physical characteristics.
“This is the difference between having a good body and not having a body,” said Jha.
He added that people with an unhealthy body should take steps to lose body fat.
“The key is to