Brazilian model dies of anorexia

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Friday, November 17, 2006

Anorexia nervosa claimed the life of another model. Ana Carolina Reston was 21 years old when she died on November 14 in São Paulo from a generalized infection caused by anorexia, an eating disorder in which sufferers obsessively deprive themselves of food in pursuit of an ultra-slim look.

She was 5'8'' tall and weighed only 88 pounds. Doctors consider this weight normal for a 12-year-old girl who is no more than 5 feet tall. Her mother has revealed to the press that her diet, since the last two months, consisted only of apples and tomatoes.

Reston's death is set to strengthen claims of links between the fashion industry and eating disorders. It comes shortly after one of Europe's most prestigious catwalk shows, in the Spanish capital, banned underweight models, using their body mass index as a guide.

It was the death of another model, Luisel Ramos from Uruguay that first cast light on the problem of models starving themselves to achieve "the perfect form". Ramos died of a heart failure during a fashion show.

Anorexia is a common eating disorder in which people strive to get thin because they think that they are overweight.