Karl Lagerfeld Shares Thoughts on Anorexia

DUESSELDORF, GERMANY - OCTOBER 06:  Markus Lanz and Karl Lagerfeld attend the 200th 'Wetten dass..?' show at the ISS Dome on October 6, 2012 in Duesseldorf, Germany. Markus Lanz hosts his first show today, having succeeded Thomas Gottschalk, who had hosted the show since 1987 and terminated his career after an accident that left one of the show's candidates paralysed.  (Photo by Mathis Wienand/Getty Images)
Oh, Karl. Photo: Mathis Wienand/Getty Images

In a recent interview with the U.K.'s Channel 4 News, Lagerfeld — who's faced criticism in the past for deeming Adele "a little too fat" — was baited with a question about fashion and body image. Unsurprisingly, he had a strong opinion on the matter: "I'm sorry to say that it's a subject I consider ridiculous for several reasons; the story with the anorexic girls — nobody works with anorexic girls, that's nothing to do with fashion. People who have that [anorexia] have problems to do with family and things like that," he said.

He went on:

There are less than 1 per cent of anorexic girls, but there more than 30 per cent of girls in France — I don't know about England — that are much, much overweight. And it is much more dangerous and very bad for the health ... So I think today with the junk food in front of the TV it's something dangerous for the health of the girl.

He makes a sound point that obesity affects far more people than anorexia. But it's obviously absurd for him to think he's never worked with an anorexic girl — secrecy being one of the hallmarks of an eating disorder. What's more, while anorexia stems from much bigger issues than wanting to be model-thin, does he really think that today's beauty standards have nothing to do with the compulsion to starve oneself? Anorexia can be caused by many things — misplaced perfectionism being one factor, usually — and the fashion industry's ideals are hardly an innocent party.