Body fatness standards:an international comparison
Population and Societies
n° 504, October 2013
The value placed on slimness varies between countries, and may be greater for one or other sex. Four groups of countries emerge: a set of mainly European countries, including France, where slimness is more highly valued for women than for men; countries such as Uruguay where the preference is for slim men and larger women; countries such as Ireland where slimness is not highly valued for either sex; and last, South Korea, where pressure to be slim is very strong for both men and women. While actual and ideal body shape are quite similar in South Korea, the situations are very contrasting by sex in most countries.