I personally choose to judge people on their behaviour, deeds, how they treat those they can’t benefit from and not on what size an individual’s body is | Perfect Woman Magazine News
Our society has set certain standards when it comes to one’s appearance. And, falling short at any of these, make living a difficult ride for many. Many, therefore, are very conscious about how they look and their weight, which affects their confidence in one way or the other. It often leads to an inferiority complex. There have been many talks, awareness programmes even movies, shows and series on body shaming. Someone all these have helped but it feels like there is still a long way to go. Actor turned humanitarian Somy Ali, who now runs her NGO, No More Tears, shares how she perceives this issue.
“First of all, it is none of my business what size an individual’s body is because it’s despicable to body shame and judge one on the size he/she wears. There are countless reasons why people lose or put on weight which I have personally experienced. When I had my back surgery in 2018, which was a rigorous nine hour surgery given I was bedridden and on major pain killers for quite some time, I gained 50lbs. So I went from a size 2 to a size 8. Gradually as time progressed with physical therapy and a healthy diet, I was able to shed the weight, however, working out even if it is simply walking for 30 minutes a day is tremendously good for our health. I maintain a healthy diet and exercise five days a week and give myself the weekends off or I will inevitably get burned out,” she says.
There is more pressure on celebrities to look good, as they are part of the glamour industry. The pressure is high as everything should be on point every time they step out.
“This is the life they have knowingly chosen and their job is to look good at all times given their livelihood is just not based on their talent, but also how they appear in public or in social media, aesthetically. Any profession where your bread and butter is based on your looks, it is incumbent upon you to take this responsibility very seriously because your self worth and your box office worth is intertwined with how you look. You have no choice, but to have a daily routine and follow it religiously with healthy eating and regular workouts. I learned this years ago from Sanju (sanjay Dutt), as soon as the shot was done the crew was setting up the next shot; Sanju would take advantage in between those takes and lift heavy weights and the same goes with Suniel [Shetty] and Shah Rukh [Khan]. These are very disciplined actors who have sacrificed many aspects of their life that we cannot even fathom solely to maintain their workout rituals. In women, actors like Shilpa [Shetty Kundra], priyanka [Chopra Jonas], Deepika [Padukone], Alia [Bhatt], and many others are all in the best shape and take excellent care of themselves. This is us moving in the right direction. I am not saying all actors should give up everything and only focus on exercising, rather, there has to be a balance just like everything else in life,” she adds.
On whether we will ever come to a point where body structure, weight and physical appearance won’t be the first thing that comes to our mind when we meet someone, Somy replied that it solely depends on the intellect and the mindset of the individual.
“If your entire life is based on superficiality and you choose to live in that superficial bubble then I see no hope for that individual. I personally choose to judge people on their behaviour, their deeds, how they respect and treat people they can’t benefit from. Do they practice what they preach and do they do what they say when they promise to make our world a better place. As I write this, two people stand out for me here, one in Shah Rukh, who is perhaps the most well read and the most intellectual actor we have in our industry/country. He also runs a foundation named after his father for acid burn victims, who are primarily women due to domestic violence and the other is Malala Yousafzai, who literally got shot in the head by the Taliban so children have a right to education. Similar to these two the history has proven many examples be it Marlon Brando and how much he did for the native Americans or [Mahatma] Gandhi ji. Thus my focus is on human behaviour, not something as trivial as what they weigh. Again, let me clarify that I am in no way encouraging people to be couch potatoes and have immense respect for not just actors, but anyone who takes care of their health, but to reiterate that weight isn’t the first thing I notice when I first meet someone. Their character, their moral compass and their deeds are more significant than their weight,” she explains.
She also reminds that years ago actors like Marilyn Monroe or Sri Devi were deemed goddesses and they weren’t a size two. “In fact they were considered sex symbols and quite voluptuous. Times change and they will continue to change. I will always consider eating healthy and daily workouts because it not only affects our body, but also our minds which has been scientifically proven with the increase of dopamine,” she signs off.
By Jyothi Venkatesh & Perfect Woman Magazine
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