On my Yahoo! news last week, a story about a model in Glamour magazine was buzzed up to the first page.  The story discussed how an “un-airbrushed photo of a plus-sized model” had been printed in the magazine, resulting in an outpouring of praise for Glamour’s willingness to show real women.

I hate the fact that this is news.  Don’t misunderstand me here:  I am a loyal Glamour subscriber, and when I saw this picture of Lizzie Miller, I actually pointed it out to Jared and said, “Wow, this model actually looks closer to my size than the usual ones.”  I, too, applaud the fact that Glamour is willing to show photos of women that reflect what people like me actually look like.

But why does this have to be news?  I cringe every single time I read the words “plus-sized model” in a news headline.  Since when is someone’s size news?  This mostly happens with celebrities and public figures, which I find even more disheartening.  What does someone’s size have to do with their talent?  Not to mention the fact that I myself would qualify as a “plus-sized model,” given the constraints we put on what this means.  In fact, most women I know would be considered a plus-sized model.  What a fantastic self-esteem booster (note the sarcasm here).

Once again, I’m not undermining the effects of obesity on a person’s health and lifestyle.  Obesity in our children and adults is a major issue that needs to be addressed and solved through healthier habits and early education.  However, according to the media’s standards, a plus-sized model is now considred to be size 12 and over.  This does not account for anything else related to the model’s general health.  I may be larger than some of my friends, but what if I have more energy than they do?  What if I eat healthier than they do, but still don’t lose weight? Why is plus-sized considered a negative connotation, when it likely means a model is healthier than her stick-thin counterparts?

My point is, size, in most cases, is just a number.  A person’s general health is determined by a lot of factors outside of size.  Yes, sometimes a larger size is a direct correlation to unhealthy habits, but most times, it’s just a number.  A lot of women can be healthy at size 12 or size 2 and a lot of women can be unhealthy at size 12 or size 2.  The fact that sizes over 10 tend to make the news more frequently is upsetting to those of us that live in a real world with real bodies and real struggles.

Once again, I applaud Glamour for recognizing that real women have real bodies.  I eagerly await the day that a picture in a magazine of a real women is not news.