Fashion models have long been an example of low body weight (BMI under 18.5 kg/m 2 ), unhealthy eating practices and unrealistic beauty ideals. While much research has examined the effect fashion models have on body dissatisfaction, body dysmorphia, body-ideal and disordered eating, their nutritional health has not been studied. This thesis endeavoured to determine the nutritional health status, body image satisfaction and anthropometric measurements of female fashion models with both qualitative and quantitative data analysis, to determine the necessity of a nutritional intervention for these professionals. A total of five (5) studies were carried out to achieve this.
Study 1 consisted of Semi-Structured Industry Professional Interviews. Participants (n=28) were industry professionals who were interviewed about the professional requirements for fashion models. Interviews were coded then valued numerically. This study ascertained the professional expectations, lifestyle, booking process, and the job process of the fashion model.
Study 2- Anthropometric Measurements of Female Fashion Models Working in the Big Four, determined professional anthropometric requirements. This quantitative study was performed by taking anthropometric data points of female fashion models (height, bust, waist and hips) available from professional modelling agency websites represented in the Big Four (Paris, NYC, London, and Milan), n= 800. This study reported the Big Four have differing requirements in both height and circumference, true to industry beliefs, yet the difference in the context of the real-world was small, the largest variation of means was 2.26cm.
Study 3- Tailored Lifestyle Care (TLC) Characteristic Study helped determine the nutritional intake, anthropometric measures, and body-image satisfaction of fashion models. A cohort of n=16 was recruited, consisting of 11 models and 5 non-model control group. Diet was captured by using a 3-day food diary which was analysed using nutrition software [Nutritics]. Bio markers blood glucose reading and ketone analysis were documented, as were anthropometric measures, and body image surveys Body Image Questionnaire (BIQ), the Eating Attitudes Test (EAT-26) Survey, and the Sociocultural Attitudes Towards Appearance Scale-3 (SATAQ-3). This study reported female fashion models underate when compared to the NHS nutritional guidelines, an average of 1616.01 kcal rather than 2000 kcal as recommended, however ate more than the non-model cohort, and chose nutrient-dense options compared to non-model cohort. Models were also seen to feel better about their body-image and are as affected by images in the media as non-models.
Study 4, Tailored Nutritional Care (TNC) Intervention Development, aimed at creating a nutrient dense eating plan, while considering the occupational and social constraints, and nutritional deficiencies found in previous studies. This eating plan was based on education, leading to a “how-to-eat” guide as well as 53 easy to follow recipes for vegan, vegetarian, omnivore and FODMAP diets, in each city of the Big Four.
Study 5, The Impact of COVID-19 on the Fashion Model and the Fashion Industry, documented industry changes due to COVID-19 using a validated industry focused survey about the global pandemic written by researchers. This study revealed both male and female fashion models surveyed (n= 88) made the same nutritional choices and are less affected by stress than the global expectation amid a global pandemic.
As this is the first time this has been studied both qualitatively and quantitatively, this study has added to the existing body of knowledge. This thesis has highlighted the historic, occupational, and social constraints that these professionals confront to gain employment and gives the public a wider understanding into the real lifestyle and pressures that this cohort face