Hello there! It’s time for the 3rd installation of ranting and raving. Y’all know I love a good rant, but I equally love lifting up things I’m excited about and believe in, so I’ve got some raves to share as well.
Earlier this week, WW announced that this summer they will be offering free memberships to 13-17 year olds. This is a terrible idea and I hope they will reconsider. Those are some of the most formative years of life. Many girls begin puberty around age 13, and children during these ages are growing and do not need to restrict calories. It is normal to gain weight during that age, and making kids afraid of their bodies is harmful. This will teach kids that they cannot trust their bodies or their internal wisdom about how to eat. It reinforces that they need to be smaller to be acceptable, rather than combating the issues in our society that make them feel that way. Targeting vulnerable teens and their parents is not cool. I truly believe that parents who take their kids to WW or put them on a diet are trying to help, and they are doing what they think will help their kids.
I wish we lived in a world where nobody felt like they had to go on a diet or had to see their child be bullied for their weight. I wish everyone knew that there are other (evidence-based) ways to approach health and nutrition that are not associated with negative outcomes. I wish everyone knew that we all come in different shapes and sizes, and that kids didn’t feel pressure to be thin. That is not the case, though, and WW is taking advantage.
Unfortunately we know that dieting in adolescence is a risk factor for developing an eating disorder. At the least, it can set kids up for a long struggle with food and body image, not to mention weight cycling and the negative health implications that come along with it. WW is saying they want to help teenagers develop good habits, but assigning points to food, labeling foods good and bad, and obsessing over weight are not healthy habits. It boggles my mind how this tactic passed through many, many people at WW without anyone saying, “Hey, this is kinda messed up.” The answer is $$$. WW business model succeeds because diets fail, and people typically come back to the program at different times. They said as much when they said they want to attract a new, loyal customer base at a younger age and reach a new revenue goal. Taking advantage of kids and parents who may be concerned about their child’s weight is shameful.
If you know someone who is concerned about their child’s weight, or if you are in that boat, I hope this post from Maria Paredes is helpful. I found it on her Instagram, which is a great one! PS if it seems alarming to use the word fat, that is why some people choose to do so-to take the power back and say there’s nothing wrong with fat! It’s just a descriptor.
In the meantime, I’ll be sharing my thoughts on Twitter after 12pm. There is a Twitter takeover (hashtag is #wakeupweightwatchers) being led by Balanced ED Treatment. The aim is to try to get their attention in the hopes that they will reconsider this negative and dangerous policy. I hope you will join or follow along!
Whew… how about some raves to lift us up? 🙂
Ok, I know this isn’t brand new information, but I just love Aerie and the way they champion different body sizes. They announced a few years ago they wouldn’t retouch or photoshop their models, and they also include models of various sizes. I recently went to their website to order some new bathing suits and practically squealed in excitement seeing things like birth marks, stretch marks, and the like! It was so refreshing, and almost shocking, to go to a website for clothing and see parts of myself and other women in my life reflected on the screen. Representation is SO important and I’m going to make more conscious efforts to support clothing companies that celebrate body diversity.
Last week I had a few servings of white rice left over from a recipe and didn’t want to waste it. So I turned to Google and figured out how to freeze it because I freeze everything. All I had to do was let it cool in the refrigerator and then put it in the freezer in a plastic bag. When I wanted to use it this week for burrito bowls, I let it sit on the counter for a few hours (I’m sure you could put it in the fridge overnight) and then heated it in the microwave with some chicken broth to finish thawing. It was good as new! Maybe this is not groundbreaking information, but it’s going to change my grain game for sure so I had to share.
Alright, that’s all for me this morning! I’m off to a Basic Life Support that’s required for my clinical internship, then I think we might go do some wedding registry stuff later. Have a wonderful weekend!