They Agreed To Die Early If They Could Have 'The Perfect Body.' Yep, Die.

There are plenty of reasons why diets suck and plenty more reasons why no one should want to risk their life to be a certain weight.

Meet Laci.

She was 17 years old when she went on a diet.


"I said no cheese, no bread, no ice cream, basically all my favorite unhealthy things were off limits. I did it because I wanted to lose weight in time for summer. ... I would weigh myself every day, obsess over love handles and thigh gaps and arm flaps. I remember this one time I went to my friend's house, and they wanted to order pizza, and I was like, 'Yes! No!' And I ate it, and I felt terrible the next couple of days."

It sucks that Laci is not alone in her thinking. This is an all too common story. In fact, 1 in 3 female students who were polled in a big 'ole survey in the U.K. admitted to being OK with cutting months or years off of their lives to have "the perfect body."

I repeat — they were willing to DIE.

Thankfully, Laci realized that her obsessive diet was not a good idea.

"The perfect body that so many people are chasing after is like 20% below the ideal healthy weight. ... Dieting for me was really a solution to the problem of feeling terrible about myself, and I didn't know there were any alternatives to deal with it. But there are."

Ready for Laci's awesome alternatives?! I know I am.

Tip #1: "If you're dieting to be skinnier, maybe just stop."

Restricting the types of food you eat can lower your metabolism and can also make you feel weak, which can make you more susceptible to getting sick. That's probably why, as Laci says, "95% of diets just straight don't work. People gain all the weight back."

Tip #2: Realize that you are not the problem.

The mainstream media often sets the standard for what's seen as beautiful and valuable. (This also includes a $60 billion-a-year diet industry that thrives on making folks feel bad about their bodies.) Sexism also plays a role in making women feel insecure, Laci notes: "Women are socialized to constantly monitor their own bodies and to make sure that they don't take up too much space." Let's not forget about influences from our social circle. Love them or not, they're part of the problem too because, in Laci's words, "our friends and our parents diet, and body image issues seep into our brain."

Tip #3: Give yourself some love.

When was the last time you looked in the mirror and got really excited about what was staring back at you? Laci's advice is great: "I'm talking about giving yourself the love that you deserve. I'm talking about not shit-talking yourself and comparing yourself to other people. I'm talking about choices that are actually healthy, not letting the world stop with some pizza or bikinis."

Tip #4: Realize that you're a full person, not a walking scale.

Want to crush the diet industry? It could happen if everyone realized one simple truth: You are good enough. Laci's key point is that "people's goodness, their value, does not come down to their weight. You are a whole-ass human being that is so much more than just a number."

To learn more, check out the video:

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Of course, when talking about anything health related, it's always good to get a doctor's opinion.

If you agree with the points in this video, pass it on! Sharing positive info like this can help a lot of women.

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Courtesy of Macy's

In many ways, 18-year-old Idaho native, Hank Cazier, is like any other teenager you've met. He loves chocolate, pop music, and playing games with his family. He has lofty dreams of modeling for a major clothing company one day. But one thing that sets him apart may also jeopardize his future is his recent battle against a brain tumor.

Cazier was diagnosed in 2015. When he had surgery to remove the tumor, he received trauma to his brain and lost some of his motor functionality. He's been in physical, occupational, and speech therapy ever since. The experience impacted Cazier's confidence and self-esteem, so he's been looking for a way to build himself back up again.

"I wanted to do something that helped me look forward to the future," he says.

Enter Make-A-Wish, a nonprofit organization that grants wishes for children battling critical illnesses, providing them a chance to make the impossible possible. The organization partnered with Macy's to raise awareness and help make those wishes a reality. The hope is that the "wish effect" will improve their quality of life and empower them with the strength they need to overcome these illnesses and look towards the future. That was a particularly big deal for Cazier, who had been feeling like so many of his wishes weren't going to be possible because of his critical illness.

"In the beginning, it was hard to accept that it would be improbable for me to accomplish my previous goals because my illness took away so many of my physical abilities," says Cazier. His wish of becoming a model also seemed out of reach.

But Macy's and Make-A-Wish didn't see it like that. Once they learned about Cazier's wish, they knew he had to make it come true by inviting him to be part of the magical Macy's holiday shoot in New York.

Courtesy of Macy's

Make-A-Wish can't fulfill children's wishes without the generosity of donors and partners like Macy's. In fact, since 2003, Macy's has given more than $122 million to Make-A-Wish and impacted the lives of more than 2.9 million people.

Cazier's wish experience was beyond what he could've imagined, and it filled him with so much joy and confidence. "It is like waking up and discovering that you have super powers. It feels amazing!" he exclaims.

One of the best parts about the day for him was the kindness everyone who helped make it happen showed him.

"The employees of Macy's and Make-A-Wish made me feel welcome, warm, and cared for," he says. "I am truly grateful that even though they were busy doing their jobs, they were able to show kindness and compassion towards me in all of the little details."

He also got to spend part of the shoot outdoors, which, as someone who loves climbing, hiking, and scuba-diving but has trouble doing those activities now, was very welcome.

Courtesy of Macy's

Overall, Cazier feels he grew a lot during his modeling wish and is now emboldened to work towards a better quality of life. "I want to acquire skills that help me continue to improve in these circumstances," he says.

You can change the lives of more kids like Cazier just by writing a letter to Santa and dropping it in the big red letterbox at Macy's (you can also write and submit one online). For every letter received before Dec. 24, 2019, Macy's will donate $1 to Make-A-Wish, up to $1 million. By writing a letter to Santa, you can help a child replace fear with confidence, sadness with joy, and anxiety with hope.

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