A lot of the time the diet and wellness industry sends out a great message with the intention of promoting a natural and safe way of being healthy, but I’ve seen a lot of things online lately that have caused me to want to back away from the social buzz of it all.
Eat what feels right for you and your body. That’s all there is to it. I adore the knowledgeable people who promote healthy and balanced nutrition, such as Amelia Freer who published this book ― Nourish & Glow: The 10 Day Plan ― but so many people promote food in a way that is verging on pushy.
By all means offer a voice to educate people if they want to be educated, but straight up telling someone they’re a bad person for eating something such as animal products is wrong. I’m always wanting to learn more about nutrition and I wouldn’t rule out changing my diet if I’m given valid research that differs from what I thought was right, but seeing so many people forcing a type of diet upon people isn’t right.
The clean eating bandwagon
Further to my previous point, this trend of ‘clean eating’ is bad, and it’s something which has affected me personally. I’m all for eating well and trying to eat foods which are as unprocessed as possible, but I cannot refresh my Instagram without seeing some sort of decorative smoothie bowl, poke bowl or basically just a plate of veg. Anything ‘clean’, basically.
It’s great that these people are clearly trying to be healthy, good for them, but I think it’s easy for it to become borderline obsessive and eventually it’ll make others feel like they have to follow suit. I’ve spent years struggling with food but at the start of this year things got bad, and because of what I saw online and read in magazines, I didn’t want to eat anything sugary or processed for some time.
Clean eating aside, calorie counting is another one of those taboo topics that can cause harm in the diet industry.
If you’re promoting a supplement that is a healthy method to weight lose or muscle gain, fine, but the amount of celebrities and influencers that I see promoting dangerous dietary products is worrying. Particularly because you know they’re only doing it for money.
Fat loss pills, meal replacement shakes and anything that is packed full of strange ingredients should be avoided. It’s not doing anything apart from damaging your body and wasting your money. The fact that qualified Nutritionists and Dietitians spend every day trying to spread the word of how false these ads are should be enough to convince anyone not to buy into it.
The social filter
The amount of people I see posting content which is essentially a lie is unreal. It’s hard to judge sometimes and I used to be quite naive about it all, but now I take everything I see with a pinch of salt.
Saying you’re eating something when you’re not is wrong, and the fact that I’ve heard that there are people out there who post photos of their dinner and then remove the carbs from the plate before they eat is scary. Similarly, posting picture after picture of really healthy food when actually all you eat is junk food, is just as bad.
This stems right out to issues that include editing your body shape in images to make yourself appear ‘slimmer’ or ‘smaller’ in some way. You cannot lie about your body and something as important as your diet when you have a big following. At the end of the day, you owe it to people to be honest and fair.
Both ‘fat shaming’ and ‘skinny shaming’ are awful and unfortunately it’s something I see every single day. In most cases I see people write things like “you need to eat more” or “you need to lose weight”, which are equally such horrible things to say.
I feel it’s time social platforms cracked down on the extreme cyber bullying before these trolls think they own the digital space entirely, and it’s also about time brands took a good look at the message they’re spreading before hitting print or publish. They can be just as guilty.