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What the ‘Perfect’ Woman’s Body Looks Like, According to Men and Women

a woman posing for a picture


An eating disorder specialist weighs in on the mental health ramifications of a recent survey

It’s probably not a huge surprise that men and women have different ideas about what constitutes the “ideal” body for women. Now, a recent survey is spotlighting just how different.

The survey, conducted in January on behalf of RiverMend Health and Rosewood Centers for Eating Disorders, revealed that women are more likely to describe the “perfect female body” as athletic, while men prefer a curvy body type. More than half of the 1,004 respondents–54%–agreed that an athletic physique, like David Beckham’s or Michael Phelps’s, is the ideal for a man. The results for a woman’s body, however, varied. Forty-nine percent of women said an athletic body type (think: Jennifer Lopez or Gwen Stefani) is ideal, but 38% of men voted for a curvier frame (like that of Kim Kardashian West or Mariah Carey).

Certified eating disorder specialist Dena Cabrera, PsyD, executive clinical director of Rosewood, tells Health women’s critical approach may boil down to a marketing problem. “Women are inundated with pictures of the ‘ideal,’ and we tend to view ourselves in a way that taints how we see ourselves and the way we’re valued,” she says. “Women put a lot of value into body shape and size and weight.”

But women weren’t the only ones concerned with their appearance. More than 75% of survey respondents said they would give up something they love if it meant they could achieve the “perfect” body overnight. Those sacrifices included cutting out fried food, alcohol, social media, and even sex. A small percentage of people–3%–said they would go so far as to give up their homes, and 2% said they would give up a relationship with someone they love for that idealized physique.

Unsettlingly, the survey also found that men were more likely to want their partners to take extreme measures to achieve what they believe to be the perfect body. Thirteen percent of men said they would want their partner to exercise to the edge of their physical limits every day regardless of pain compared to just 5% of women; 5% of men said they would want their partner to skip meals compared to 1% of women; and 3% of men said they would want a partner to consume laxatives or to throw up after eating compared to zero women.

Cabrera, also author of the book, Mom in the Mirror: Body Image, Beauty, and Life after Pregnancy, doesn’t think men necessarily mean any harm. “I don’t think they’re equating it with negativity,” she says. “They’re not connecting it with self-esteem or self-worth.”
Still, she says she’s had at least one patient with a partner who was so aggressive about her body, the romance became abusive. “The relationship became about fulfilling [the man’s] needs and negating [the woman’s] own needs, self-worth, and value,” she says. “A relationship should be about two equal partners and about connection, not about looks.”

Some eating disorder signs are obvious: dramatic weight loss, a refusal to eat, retreating to the bathroom for long periods after meals. But anorexia, bulimia, and binge eating disorder also reveal themselves in more subtle ways. How can you tell if a friend or family member is at risk? There’s no surefire way, since people with eating disorders display a wide range of symptoms. (Not to mention personal characteristics: Eating disorders, once associated almost exclusively with adolescent girls, are now recognized more frequently in younger children and adults.) That said, these easy-to-overlook signs may help you spot an eating disorder—or disorder in the making—sooner.

Blake Bakila






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Do Women Really Need Female “Viagra”

It might surprise you, but for some women, the Ginuwine Pandora station and a quick vape are not enough to get in the mood. Surveys have estimated that about 10 percent of women have something called hypoactive sexual desire disorder. It was with this condition in mind that the Food and Drug Administration yesterday approved Addyi, the first prescription drug to enhance sex drive in women green-lighted by the agency. (Street names: “female Viagra,” “pink Viagra,” “girl boner in a bottle.”)

Created by Sprout Pharmaceuticals, Addyi, known generically as flibanserin, was engineered to treat women whose lack of libido is causing them distress. Sexual pleasure is a critical part of emotional health, the premise seems to be, and if you’re not able to give and receive it, your psychological and physical well-being may be at risk. And given that men have a whole host of available drugs to better their sex lives, it seems about time women got their own magic pill, right?

Interestingly, Addyi is actually the first approved drug to increase libido at all. The drugs aimed at men, Viagra and the like, are intended to help men achieve an erection, not to increase horniness. Also unlike Viagra, Addyi is not a pill one takes an hour before sex to get going, but rather must be taken daily, long term, in order to see results.

The big question is, of course, whether a lack of sexual libido in women is an actual medical condition that needs to be treated. Surely a low sex drive is just as normal and ultimately natural as a high one. (Of course the first sex drug for women is aimed to increase libido. I’m sure many men would like to “fix” this “problem” in their partners.) At the same time, sex is an important component of a healthy relationship, and without it your relationship could suffer tremendously; for these people, the pill may offer hope.

The other big question is whether the drug actually works. Many people are saying it doesn’t, or, at least, that it doesn’t work well enough. Several pharmaceutical giants have reportedly attempted to make and sell such a drug, including Pfizer (which produces Viagra), Bayer, and Procter & Gamble, but they ultimately abandoned their efforts. The FDA previously rejected Addyi itself twice, in 2010 and again in 2013, citing marginal effectiveness and considerable side effects, including nausea, drowsiness, dizziness, and fainting, which can lead to serious injuries.

Following the rejections, campaigns like Even the Score have argued that it’s sexist to have so many drugs for men on the market but none for women. Now that the drug has been approved, critics are saying that the FDA was pressured into green-lighting the drug by a feminist lobby, and that the drug’s negative effects outweigh the potential benefits. Particularly strong opposition is coming from Leonore Tiefer, clinical associate professor of psychiatry at NYU School of Medicine, who told Time: “I am very opposed to the drug and have been since it first went to the FDA in 2010 and it was rejected. Then it was rejected a second time. The drug hasn’t changed, the data hasn’t changed, and my opinion hasn’t changed. I think it’s a disaster. It’s unsafe and it doesn’t work. That is all a drug is supposed to do. Work and be safe.”

In any case, the drug will come with a label warning doctors and patients that combining the pill with alcohol can cause dangerously low blood pressure, and thus fainting. Because the pill must be taken daily, women on the medication would have to be cool with being basically sober. (To whom I would ask: Maybe the reason that you’re never horny is because you’re never drunk?)

The drug will be available starting in October. Which means that, very soon, many women may be making a tough decision: Would you rather be able to drink or be sober and nauseous in exchange for a minimally heightened sex drive? Having more options for ways to increase desire is a positive thing. But you might try a vibrator before jumping to the meds.

Karley Sciortino writes the blog Slutever.

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Be Smart and You’ll Find Smart

When it comes to dating, finding the right person can be a hassle. You want to date someone like you, who gets you – in other words, someone who’s smart. However, if you’re just throwing caution to the wind, you might be getting sick and tired of your dismal results. Stop following old school dating advice and other dating rules. Let’s talk about how to meet that smart woman and make some meaningful connections.
Don’t meet at a bar: There are nice girls at bars, you’re there and you’re a good person, right? Yes, I agree but that’s not the issue. The problem is in bars we are letting our libido guide us. The ‘hot” girl smiling at us will win every time over the “shy” girl in the corner with her friends. Let’s admit it guys we are lazy. Try church, toastmasters or music venues. (Coachella and Oz fest don’t count)
Get your family and friends involved: Countries that have arranged marriages, like India, have a much lower divorce rate than the US. It could be that they wait to date and get intimate and another is that people close to them help choose. How many times should we have listened to our mom when picking a girl? Reach out to your friends who are in good relationships or married and tell them you are looking for a serious relationship. They will help you find a good girl.
Embrace being single: It’s OK to be single. If you hate it, you’ll appear as desperate or too eager, which scares good women away. This desperation can cloud your vision from seeing red flags because you become fixated on the idea of being in a relationship. If you’re having a hard time being single or feeling sorry for yourself, don’t date. Go out with friends and let them boost your ego until you’re ready to get back out there again.
Set the pace: You might be meeting women who are eager to settle down and rush you into intimacy, slow down and bring back the days of wooing. You will quickly learn if this is a fling or if she’s interested in being with you for a long-term relationship. Setting the pace and standards will bring forth the woman that is right for you – and not just a one night stand.
Take a break: If you’re no longer enjoying the dating process, don’t force yourself to date. Stop dating if you’re burnt out, in the wrong mindset, or carrying baggage from the last relationship. You will attract what you give off and you’ll be disappointed with the results. Take some time off, recharge, open your heart, and lighten your load. Having a positive frame of mine will yield better results.
Be picky: There’s nothing wrong with having a preference. After all, you’re looking for someone to be in a long term relationship. Make time for women who consider you a priority in life, communicate with you, honor their word, and treat you right. Being selective reinforces positive feelings and gives you a better dating experience.
Investigate recent breakups: Figure out why you have been unlucky and stop it.  Do you just go for looks? Do you bail out too soon? Are you afraid of intimacy? Are you jealous, competitive, work-a-holic, lazy??? Be honest with yourself, talk to mom or a therapist about your issues, own them and change them. Don’t date until a third party agrees you have done the work.
Cut ties early: If you’re looking for a long term relationship and she says she’s not looking or doesn’t want to commit too soon, believe her and cut ties early on. Don’t wait around hoping she’ll change her mind. You’ll be wasting time looking for someone who is ready for something more and then you’ll regret that wasted time. Walk away as soon as you can and look for the girl that wants to be with you and commit to something long term.

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Spray It Dont Say It

When Native Roots opens its sixth Colorado recreational cannabis dispensary in Aspen this week, psychoactive products won’t be the only items on its menu. On Friday, the chain will debut its Foria product geared exclusively toward women.

Foria is a THC-infused lube that doesn’t get its users high; rather, women who apply it are purported to have a much more fulfilling and enjoyable sex experience.

So says Mat Gerson, Foria’s wellness director, who splits time between Colorado and California, where the product was launched initially on the medical cannabis market.

“This has been definitely the most interesting business story of my life,” said the Boulder native, who also co-founded Sir Richard’s condoms.

While it’s not an apples-to-apples comparison, Gerson said, Foria is the “female Viagra.”

“It creates sensation and sensitivity,” he said. “And it helps them have a deeper orgasm for some reason. That’s been the consistent feedback we’ve gotten from users. Women try it, and they find it effective.”

Native Roots will make the product in Colorado, Gerson said. Its new recreational shop opens at 308 S. Hunter St. the same week the Winter X Games come to town. Gerson said the company will market the product in Aspen all week — cannabis is forbidden during at the event — with literature and promotional material.

Gerson said the target consumers are the “about 50 percent of women in our culture who have challenges in their intimate lives.”

Initially, plans were for Foria to be rolled out in Aspen near Valentine’s Day. But Thursday’s opening of Native Roots accelerated the Friday launch.

“There are 26 FDA-approved drugs on the market for men with similar challenges,” Gerson said. “There’s really not much on the market for women. It’s proving to be extremely effective for women on a broad scale. Women in long-term partnership with their partners are finding a new spark.”

The spray is applied to the vaginal region.

“Most (cannabis) products induce psychoactive activity,” Gerson said. “But this doesn’t.”

The small bottles go for $44. The large ones are $88.

Another version of cannabis strictly for women created a buzz last week with reports of Bethany Frankel, of “Real Housewives of New York City” fame and the founder of the Skinnygirl label, launching a Skinny Girl marijuana product. The cannabis wouldn’t produce symptoms such as the munchies, thus adhering to the Skinnygirl theme.

Frankel was spotted in Aspen last month at the Green Dragon recreational shop on the Hyman Avenue mall. On Dec. 20, she tweeted: “OMG it’s the craziest thing to see marijuana legal in Aspen. People walking into pot stores like it’s the @Gap #prohibitiondone.”

(excerpt from an article in aspentimes.com)

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Why Is Hot Hot?

What is the ideal female? What do men find most physically attractive and why? The average playboy centerfold measures 35-23-35, average age 22. Wikipedia defines the pulchritudinal ideal as 5 ft 9 and measures 34-24-24. Victoria secret model Marisa Miller is 5’10 34-23-34. QUESTION: Why do most men and society find these women attractive? Attraction is subjective and changes with priorities and age. Some of us have types that we find attractive but often end up with people who don’t fit that mold. It is really a matter of- “you know when you know.” However, studies have shown that there is one constant to physical beauty- symmetry.
We all know when it comes to female sexual attractiveness there is a societal template. We love the Playboy/ Victoria Secret body type and youthful appearance strictly for breeding. A symmetrical figure with our ample curves is the best vessel to carry seminal seed to fruition. aka-That body type is most likely to have a healthy baby. As with many things in our life; Our wanderings, leanings, lustings and decisions are made subconsciously and tie into our basic sexual origins.

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Is that all?

Premature Ejaculation (PE) is a condition that can affect men emotionally and physically and take a toll on their relationships. The most common way to describe this condition is an ejaculation that occurs before both partners would like it to.  Intercourse plays a huge role in the success and happiness of a relationship and marriage. Over time, unresolved sexual problems can slowly chip away at this bond for both partners.

Effective communication is crucial to a healthy and long lasting relationship; however it can often be difficult for a man to discuss his premature ejaculation concerns. There is a lot of unnecessary shame that is associated with the condition and many men think that admitting they have problem makes them less of a man. More so than not, not talking about the problem is what actually makes it worse. Misunderstandings, hurt feelings, and anger can quickly escalate.

On an evolutionary level, intercourse promotes what scientists like to call “pair bonding.” During sex, and particularly during an orgasm, chemicals like oxytocin and dopamine are released; these chemicals help strengthen the bond between both partners. During this time, there is also an increased feeling of trust and security as well as an emotional attachment. These bonding emotions are crucial to the overall health and longevity of a relationship therefore when both partners miss out on these healthy bonding chemicals they are instead left with negative feelings of inadequacy and disappointment.

Premature ejaculation is a common condition and it is usually caused by a combination of an over sensitive glans penis (head of the penis) and nervousness and performance anxiety during sex. It affects 25- 40% of men in the United States. PE is more common in younger men and often resolves itself with increasing experience.  During sex, anxiety plays a key role in PE.  If he’s inexperienced and doesn’t know how to control his urges, he can also experience something called “short intravaginal ejaculatory latency time (IELT).” This means he ejaculates after a few thrusts and therefore might be dubbed a “two minute man” by his partner. This behavior can also trigger feelings of remorse in his partner and leave them to think that he is behaving selfishly and that she is merely a vehicle of his sexual pleasure.

Despite the high prevalence of PE, a study presented at the 2004 American Urological Association meeting revealed that only 50% of those affected by PE were distressed by their condition and out of the other 50%, only 12% sought out treatment for their condition. Due to the stressful nature of PE, men are not apt to discuss their issues and view PE as a sign of their masculinity. This may also prevent them from pursuing relationship.

But don’t give up.  Some of the methods used to help erectile dysfunction, (like Viagra and injection therapy), can help.  Medications used to treat depression like Zoloft and Paxil, (SSRI’s), can reduce the normal ejaculatory response and a new medication called Ristenza combines elements of SSRI’s and the active ingredient in Viagra and works for many men.

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Fifty Shades of Grey

This Valentine’s Day the anticipated film release of the landmark book, Fifty Shades of Grey, is upon us. It has sold over 100 million copies and is still going strong. Vintage books acquired the series and is the envy of all publishing houses since the book has spent 100 weeks on the best seller list. The rumor is that Barnes and Noble would have to have closed its doors if it hadn’t been for FSOG. What even more remarkable- the author E.L. James is previously known for writing Twilight fan fiction! Anyone who has read the book will tell you it’s not War and Peace, many say Twilight and Harry Potter were better written. So why has this book connected with so many people . Well, I have to say, even from a sexologist’s perspective, some of the scenes are pretty hot.
Is it breaking new ground? hardly- erotic literature has been around for centuries, so why this book and why now? Why are we in the need for it and why do we consume it so voraciously? And guys, reading this, you should be asking the question why are the women really driving the sales of this book?
Women, as well men love to be turned on. It intoxicates us. We fell relaxed and happy because we’re high on hormones. Being turned on effects our brain very much like alcohol or drugs. While men are turned on mostly by visual images women for the most part prefer erotic stimuli like films and literature- and since it is women who are buying FSOG, men should take notice.
Dr OZ recently said that we are in a state of sexless marriages in America. Many couples are only having sex once a month. Hello! No wonder! Also, we are busy and stressed out. Most middle income families are feeling financial pressure so people need a quick escape. This book answers the call. Its easy reading with a big payoff! So all you men out there pay attention to the call of FSOG and realize that your woman may be wanting some sexual excitement in her life. The good news is that you are the perfect person to provide it.

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Size does matter – Breast size an expose part 2

Anthropologist Helen Fisher relates big breasts as honest signs of the ability to ovulate. Of course the first analyses had to do with fertility. Women with large tumescent (i.e. swollen) breasts are fertile. Older women, whose breasts typically sag, are not likely to have a healthy pregnancy. Similarly, as we became bi-pedal primates, we began to visually display our sex organs. Male and female genitals were readily discernible making sexual interaction easier. Individuals with larger penises for example were easily spotted by ovulating females and mated more often, AKA more offspring with big dicks. As for males searching out females to impregnate large noticeable tits were spotted first. SO genetically it made sense.
Desmond Morris a famous ethnologist. Who wrote the book, The Naked Ape, looked at human sexuality zoologically. He hypothesized that women’s red full lips are transferences of a swollen vulva (maybe the reason why the lipstick industry has done so well) and large breast reminders off buttocks.  These genetic reminders are of inherited mating rituals from when we were quadrupeds. This is not a widely excepted theory but don’t tell that to the MAC corporation lipstick division.
One of my favorite books is Sex: A Natural History, by Joann Ellison Rogers. In it she explores our sexual habits and proclivities through the lens of human evolution. One theory that has gained a lot of momentum over the years is that women with large breasts appeared either ovulating or lactating and, consequently, attracted more males. Males may have protected large breasted females to ensure the safety of their offspring … even in utero. Big breasts may have been a deceptive tactic to fool males into providing them extra food and protection. From the male perspective he is providing for an ovulating female that will provide sex and hopefully become pregnant or, better yet, he is providing for the future mother of his offspring. Hey Darwin are you listening? Big tits are multifunctional! Put them in the genetic matrix.

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Size does matter! But why? breast size an expose- Part 1

Ok, so size does matter when it comes to boobs but the reason why will surprise you.  We all know we love them! It would be next to impossible to find another body part subject to more fascination and scrutiny than the female breasts. It’s how we gained seminal nourishment to survive as babies, then they became items of hilarity and jokes, sources of despair for flat chested teenage girls, goals of passage for teenage b0ys (i.e. the famed “2nd Base”), the basis of augmentation obsession and financial windfall for plastic surgeons. Artists, fashion designers, and pornographers have used large breasts as a way of motivating the masses to consume their products. However, there is a reason that breasts developed in girls long before they are needed for nursing: they are secondary sexual characteristics designed to attract a mate and keep him around.
Men all around the world love a woman with big ample cleavage. Probably more so here in the US with our repressed sexuality (thanks to the puritans and lack of nude beaches). But why… because they look hot? Well not entirely, studies show that what is visual stimulating in breasts is symmetry more than size. An article published in the international Journal of Surgical Reconstruction analyzed 100 photographs of women‘s breasts from the Sun Newspaper website, specializing in topless photos of women with attractive breasts. By establishing a “breast meridian” they systematically defined the perfect breast. Essentially, these researchers found an equal distribution, between the upper and lower breast, ideal. We know that facial beauty is, likewise, dictated by symmetrical lines. So if the perfect boob is even and not too big why the pre occupation with size? It could be genetic… Stay tuned!