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Retouched photos to be labelled in French anti-anorexia fight

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Paris Fashion Week in 2016 - models will have to undergo regular medicals because they are considered at risk of having eating disorders Reuters/Gonzalo Fuentes

Fashion photos will have to carry a notification if they have been retouched to make models look slimmer and models will have to have a medical certificate to work, according to a decree aimed at fighting eating disorders published in France Friday.


From 1 October the phrase "Retouched photo" will have to accompany digitally modified pictures published in advertising, the media, on the internet and in catalogues if the retouching "has changed the physical appearance of models", a law published today rules.

And, as from Saturday, models practicing their profession in France will have to undergo a medical examination every two years and be issued with a medical certificate certifying that their they are in good enough health to work.

Particular attention will be paid to their body mass index (BMI), which is calculated by dividing their weight by the square of their height.

The World Health Organisation considers a person underweight if their BMI is below 18.5 and seriously underweight if it is below 16.

The measure aims to combat the "promotion of inaccessible ideals of beauty and prevent anorexia among young people" as well as protecting models, who are judged to be in particular danger of eating disorders, France's health ministry says.