The models who walk the runway at Victoria's Secret fashion shows are often idolized, and in some cases even worshipped, for their figures. Strutting down the runway, these women are mean to epitomize beauty, boasting ravishing good looks and Amazonian-like bodies. Tall, beautiful, and (most importantly) thin, they represent what most women aspire to look like and what many men covet. They are considered the gold standard in regard to physical beauty; however, these women possess looks that reflect only a small percentage of women as a whole. 

As a result of such unrealistic standards of beauty, young girls attempt to live up to those "ideal looks," but due to that same impracticability, often times fall short. In the case of Australian teen Christie Swadling, she sought to look like her idol, model Miranda Kerr. She had such a strong desire to resemble the model that she pushed herself beyond her limits, exercising relentlessly while practically starving herself. The rigorous exercise, combined with the lack of nourishment, gave her the thin figure she desired - but not without a cost. Collapsing on her 17th birthday, Swadling's deprived body reached its breaking point, and she was rushed to the hospital. On her deathbed, the teenager saw the experience as a wake-up call to turn her life around and educate others on the dangers of anorexia. Now she speaks out against the skinny body image that's promoted today, and hopes other young girls will learn from her experiences. 

What do you think? Have you ever struggled with an eating disorder or known someone who has? Tell us what you think about Christie's message in the comments down below.