A social media influencer—who wanted to inspire her fans by losing more than half her body weight—died while taking part in a rigorous weight-loss boot camp in northwest China, igniting a discussion about how to govern the influencer industry.
According to CNN International, the death of the 21-year-old influencer, known online as Cuihua, has rekindled worries about the pressures women face to adhere to conventional beauty standards and led the state media to issue a safety warning about the dangers of weight-loss camps. Coming only weeks after a young man in the country passed away after live-streaming himself consuming several bottles of potent alcohol, it has also increased criticism of the influencer sector.
According to state media agencies, as cited by CNN, Cuihua had been sharing her weight-loss journey with her tens of thousands of fans on Douyin, China's version of TikTok, in an effort to inspire others in their own battles against obesity.
She revealed that she was striving to drop 100 kilograms of weight and that she weighed 156 kilograms (344 pounds) in a recent series of videos in which she documented her intense training activities.
Following her death late last month, videos of the young influencer running and lifting weights were widely circulated on Chinese social media and even appeared on a number of state media sites, according to CNN.
According to China National Radio, Cuihua, also known by her family name of Zhou, had joined a number of weight-loss programs in different cities in an effort to attain her objective and had shed more than 27 kilograms (60 pounds) in the two months before her death.
Just two days prior to her death, according to CNR, Cuihua had attended her last camp in the Shaanxi province.
They claimed that despite the fact that the camp advocated "nutritious meals, rest, and healthy exercise," she had decided to restrict her nutrition in addition to engaging in rigorous workouts, as per CNN.
Since then, photographs and videos of Cuihua training have been erased from the account.
The influencer's family received "compensation" from the Shaanxi weight loss camp, according to state media reports, but the amount was not specified.
According to local police, they are looking into the death and if the weight loss camp used excessive or inappropriate training methods, CNN reported. (ANI)