The 5’4″ Caro, who weighed a mere 68 pounds, died in France after being hospitalized for two weeks with a lung infection in Japan, where she had been working.
Isabelle started battling anorexia when she was 12. Over the next 16 years, Caro was repeatedly hospitalized after nearly starving herself to death.
Isabelle once described her obsession with dieting: “You’re stuffed with awful food like a fattened goose. You’re forced to gain weight [at the hospital]. And as soon as you’re released, you lose all the weight again. At least that’s the way it was with me.”
In 2007, the skeletal Isabelle gained worldwide attention after allowing herself to be photographed nude by celebrity photographer Oliviero Toscani.
The disturbing photo, which showed a sickly, emaciated Caro looking haggard, older than her years and unhealthy, was part of an ad campaign to highlight the dangers of anorexia.
In 2008, Isabelle released an autobiography entitled The Little Girl Who Didn’t Want To Get Fat, where she discussed her battle with anorexia, low self esteem and self-hatred.
Sadly, anorexia and its sister eating disorder, bulimia, are rampant in the modeling and acting professions, but also prevalent among young girls.
Experts say between 5% and 20% of people who develop anorexia eventually die from it.
Samantha Chang is the executive editor of TheImproper and a celebrity writer at Examiner.