Women Are Taking the #A4Waist Challenge to Find Out if They're "Skinny Enough"


Marie Claire
(Image credit: Marie Claire)

Today in weird trends that make you feel horrible about your body: Chinese women are using an 8.5-inch-by-11-inch piece of paper (aka an A4-size paper) to determine whether they're skinny on Weibo, China's version of Twitter, actual Twitter, and Instagram.

The challenge works like this: You hold a piece of paper long-ways in front of your body and see if the sides of your waist disappear behind it. Then you take a #humblebrag selfie and post it with the hashtag #A4waist.

If there's no skin peeking out from either edge, congrats, you're paper-thin! Except your award is a big ol' sucker punch because this test tells you N-O-T-H-I-N-G about your weight or physical health. 

The concept appears to be based on the idea that a person's waist circumference can help medical experts estimate your body composition: The more fat you have on your waist, the greater your risk of obesity-related health issues that are way more serious than looking thin in a bikini, like type-two diabetes, high-blood pressure, and coronary artery disease, according to the CDC. But remember that doctors use waist circumference (distance around) to access a person's health—not width, which is the only thing a piece of A4 paper can really measure. And again, waist circumference is just an estimate, not a death sentence or "fat" label.

So, rational people: You can see how a one-dimensional piece of paper isn't the best way to assess your body type. So instead of stuffing last semester's notes down your pants, maybe like the post below and move on with your life?

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