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‘Starvation’ is now a lifestyle choice for Lebanese women
A diet brand called ‘Starvex’ sends out a dangerous message to an image-obsessed public.
April 10, 2010 11:00 by kippreport
The best way to be healthy is to control your diet and do exercise, right? Well, yes – unless you’re Lebanese. In that case, there’s always ‘Starvex’.
Starvex, manufactured by the Lebanese company Kalastios International, sells itself as a herbal slimming aid. “Our research and development team is proud to announce the invention of a new herbal slimming formula processed by high specific manipulation,” says the (rather unfortunate) statement on the company’s website.
The product costs $50 per month, in a country where a monthly income of $800 is a blessing. For many Lebanese women, $50 is a bit much. But if they can’t afford it, many chose to get a loan.
No, that’s not a joke. For Lebanese women are obsessed with image. Their desire to be ‘in’ and thin compels them to rash decisions: everything from consuming expensive diet pills, to more serious measures such as going under the knife. All in the quest to conform to notions of beauty set by fashion magazines and television programs.
What is the thinking behind a dieting product called ‘Starvex’? Starve yourself to be thin? What a dangerous message, given that it implies starvation is a lifestyle choice, rather than a human tragedy.
This certainly is, to paraphrase Kalastios International, a highly specific manipulation. And, no doubt, a highly profitable one.