The Hourglass Figure – As Old As Time
Back in the Victorian era, women were found more attractive when they were carrying extra weight. The reason for this was ridiculously simple. If a woman was well off, she could afford to eat the kinds of foods that would make her very curvy, and those extra pounds suggested that she would make a good mother to any well titled gentleman’s children. She had the means to live well, and a well connected marriage meant that her family would thrive.
During the time period when the statue of Venus was created, artists sought to capture the feminine ideal of beauty. Unlike the male counterparts, which were defined and toned with lean muscles roping their statuesque bodies, a woman was to look softer and more appealing. The statue of Venus is long held as the pinnacle of what every woman is designed to look like at her peak, and that statue looks nothing at all like what we see today. Looking at Venus, she is of average height, her face is of average shape as are her looks, but her body is long, lean and suggests a bit of softness and curves where they belong.
The artists had it right, women are not supposed to sport six-pack abs like men, they are not meant to boast bulging biceps. Rather, a woman is supposed to look as she was created, as a vessel for bearing children. Whether as women, we ever decide to have children is irrelevant. Men are drawn to this body type because it is ingrained instinctually, and will forever be what they seek in a woman. Women are made to carry a bit of extra weight than men in sheer terms of body fat percentages. The extra fat is not considered bad fat, because women carry an extra layer on their entire body. This helps to insulate them for carrying a baby, but it also results in that pleasingly soft figure. This is not to say that there is no need to have toned muscle beneath that layer, only that those muscles were not meant to be seen easily.
As time has gone on, the ideal for womanly beauty has changed drastically. A Google search for “World’s most beautiful women 1950” (change date as needed) will show you just how far we have changed even through decades. We push our bodies to attain an image that we were not meant to keep, because our bodies know instinctually what shape we are supposed to be, and strives to get there. In early times, meals only happened once a day, but as we have grown as a society, it became normal to incorporate a luncheon, and then a supper. Diet fads in the 1990’s began suggesting we eat even more than the 3 square meals a day we grew up with, and before long we spent all our time digesting, and leaving no time for anything else.
Socrates said, “Eat to live, not live to eat.” He was right, and this is one of the oldest philosophers ever known. The meaning of his quote is that we should only be eating as little as it takes to be healthy, to survive properly, not as much as we want, whenever we want. We live in a society today where beyond eating the 3 meals a day and snacks in between that we have been led to think is correct, we also cave to cravings. If it’s 3am, we can’t sleep and we want chocolate ice cream, we’re likely to go to the store for a pint of Ben & Jerry’s. If we’re bored, it’s no reason to eat either. If you find yourself getting up, opening the refrigerator door, looking in, closing it, opening the cupboards, closing them, taking nothing, and repeating the process 5 minutes later, you know that you’re just eating out of boredom. If you were truly hungry, anything would have sufficed.
The key to changing a lifestyle is to first recognize that we are so far from the standard for feminine perfection, and then knowing how to get there. It means changing our perceptions, our way of eating, and fitting in exercise. We must be vigilant to curb our cravings, and not lose our willpower over the trying winter months. During this time it’s all too easy to stay bundled in a blanket, snacking and watching the television. When you’re eating better, you will notice those cravings for high sodium and high sugar foods will disappear. This is because your body is finally getting the right balance of what it needs. Another big thing to consider is getting the right amount of sleep. If you’re suffering from exhaustion and sleep deprivation, your body sends signals to your brain to make you feel better. You are prone to reach for the foods that will send out pleasure signals, rather than lie down for a nap.
Regardless what body type we were born with, we are all made to fit this Venus body type. Sometimes it’s not enough to try to diet and exercise alone, and when you need the extra helping hand, programs like The Venus Factor can give you that edge you need to keep going and see success. The program helps to teach you about metabolic issues that only women struggle with, and how to beat them. It gives you ideas on healthy living, and eating, and exercises you can perform even from home. The best thing that an at home program can do for you is the ability to customize the entire thing to your size, and your needs, giving you a well marked path to follow so you never feel lost along the way. Remember, despair is only marked by the people who cease to try.