Model posts photos showing the shocking lengths she went to lose weight

While it may be easy to assume that being a model is a simple job, there are some downsides to it. Admittedly, I am nowhere near aesthetically pleasing enough to be a model, but even if I was, I would struggle with the constant calorie counting and intense fitness regimes that models have to put themselves through in order to make sure that their body fits the beauty ideals of the Western world.

However, one person who knows all too well about the rigmarole of being a model is Nia Marshalsay-Thomas. The model and TV presenter has spoken about her struggles with laxatives, saying that they have "ruined" her body as she sought to drop to a genuine size eight.

Nia Marshalsay-Thomas Credit: Ein Byd

The former Miss Wales said that she was asked to drop a dress size in order to model bridal dresses. Speaking to current affairs programme Ein Byd, Thomas said: "All of the sample size dresses were a UK size 6-8, and I'm an 8-10."

“I felt like I was the biggest one there. I left there feeling really degraded. I felt like they were trying to hide my body under the bigger dresses because the smaller ones didn’t fit me.

I was made to feel ashamed of my body .”

Shortly after the experience, Nia received an email from a modelling agency who expressed an interest in representing her as a full-time model. However, after sending her measurements over to the agency, she was told that they would only be willing to represent her if she slimmed down to a "genuine size eight".

Nia Marshalsay-Thomas Credit: Ein Byd

Seeking a quick fix, Nia turned to laxatives in order to try and obtain "the perfect figure."

“I started off taking one a day. Then when my body got used to that and it no longer worked for me, I increased the dosage until I was taking so many that my body just didn’t work without them," she said.

Due to her reliance on the drugs, the over-the-counter laxatives stopped having an effect on the model. Nia was forced to go to the doctor and it was there that it came apparent that she was now dependent on laxatives. Since then, Nia has been prescribed laxatives, which she now take twice a day, every day.

“My life now revolves around it - it’s really embarrassing."

alt Credit: Instagram/@Marshalsay

“If you go anywhere, you have to take it with you. It’s had a massive impact on my life 10 years down the line.”

Nia has continued to work in the world of modelling but has said that she hopes her experience will teach others to be happy in their own skin, rather than feeling pressure to fit in.

alt Credit: Ein Byd

“If I’d have realised before that I could do all this as me and embrace who I am, rather than trying to change to suit the industry, I would never, ever have done it and my body would still be working as it should be.”

If there's one thing to take from Nia's story it's that if you are thinking about shedding some pounds, it's always best to do it naturally, rather than relying on drugs.