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Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Get thin: look old

A doughty old bird said a few years ago that when you get older you have to choose between your face and your ass. It may have been Elizabeth Taylor, it may have been Barbara Cartland.

Anyway, whoever said it was bang on the money. A report by the Million Women Study says the ideal body mass index (BMI) of a woman of the average height of 5ft 4 ins is about 24. This would mean weighing about 10 stone. (Apologies to my Euro chums for not using KGs but you know what laggards we Brits are when it comes to weights and measures.)

Meanwhile research published in the papers today says that losing 10 pounds can age a woman over the age of 40 by four years.

It's all to do with losing fat in the cheeks. According to Dr Bahaman Guyuron of Chase Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio, the study involving pairs of twins found that a BMI higher by four points was found to result in a younger appearance of between two and four years.

Now if you're Madonna you can achieve a very low BMI and still retain some flesh in the cheeks courtesy of Restylane or whatever else is pumped in there. But over time it starts to look lumpy and your face changes shape. And doesn't it now seem really vain and shallow to try to prevent ageing when we're in recession?

I am working hard to shed the half a stone that creeps on in the winter - but I am giving up any ambitions of being a size eight or 10. If there's a choice to be made between looking younger (and fatter), or being skinny (and haggard), I know which one I would take.

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