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Beyonce Knowles
Coveted ... Beyonce Knowles / Reuters
Return of the curve

19aug05

CURVES are back in vogue.

Today's generation of young Australian women appear to have a healthier body image than those a decade ago, a survey suggests.

Newspoll studied more than 500 women aged 18-35 across Australia, finding 89 per cent liked their body "a little" or "a lot".

Asked to pick the perfect female body, most chose the fuller figures of Catherine Zeta-Jones and Beyonce Knowles. Victoria Beckham came last.

"It seems that the young women are rejecting the stick insect kind of really thin ideal," Sydney University lecturer and study founder Jenny O'Dea said.

"I think that's an interesting, positive trend."

The women clearly rejected the dangerously underweight Beckham, a former Spice Girl.

"It does suggest Australian women's body ideal may be approaching what would be considered to be a more healthy, normal, curvy weight which is great news," Dr O'Dea said .

Just a decade ago Dr O'Dea, a nutritionist, found eight out of 10 young women wanted to be slimmer.

"The most concerning finding back then was that 42 per cent of the already clinically underweight young women wanted to lose more weight," she said.

"That was a shocking study. This new research does suggest that a more natural, realistic figure may be more desired by both women and men."

Dr O'Dea said studies she had done on men over 15 years had consistently found most chose a larger body as the ideal for women.


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