Farah Sedky is this year's Miss Egypt who participated in the 66th Miss Universe pageant last night. One of her main reasons for competing in Miss Universe was to spread the idea of a positive body image, especially for women and the younger generation.
Sedky herself was brutally bullied in her all-girl high school for being considered ''morbidly obese'' and weighing 220 pounds at the time. The girls at her school treated her so badly, she even got beaten at one point. When she was only 15 years old, her doctor told her she would be diabetic if she didn't change her lifestyle in the next six months.
''This was the first time that I saw my father cry, which motivated me to lose the weight and begin to maintain a healthy lifestyle,'' Sedky said. Sedky struggled at first eating healthy, but her determination to change got her through it. ''What clicked with me on an emotional level to start my journey was the fact that I knew I wasn't living up to my full potential,'' she said. ''Also, seeing how sad my father was pushed me to make these changes.'' Sedky lost almost 80 pounds by cutting her portion sizes, limiting herself to not eat carbs after 7 p.m., adding lemons to her meals and exercising daily by attending workout classes.
Sedky is very passionate about spreading her message about positive body image and loving and accepting yourself as you are. She talks about wanting to change the idea of beauty. "We are all beautiful in our own way and we are not supposed to look like each other you know what makes you different than the other person right next to you that is what makes you unique and that's what you should celebrate." Even though her reasons for losing weight were for her health, she believes the bullying she went through was because of unrealistic standards of beauty. "I've learned how to love myself, which was the hardest thing I had to learn,'' Sedky said. ''I want to be a role model for little girls, just as I needed to have at their age. I want them to know that nothing is their fault; challenges will pass and they'll go on with their lives to become successful individuals. The key is to learn to love to accept themselves." “I truly believe it’s time to show women that they should appreciate, accept and love their bodies the way they are,” she said. “It’s about time that we all come together not just for women but also for children, to make sure they grow up in a healthy environment where they won’t feel pressured to focus on fitting in and fitting a certain perception on beauty. Instead, they will grow to focus on developing their aspirations.” Even though Sedky didn't win Miss Universe, I hope she continues to spread her message around the world.