Let’s face it people are obsessed with diets, after all it’s a billion dollar industry for a reason! We all want to look like these gorgeous Celebrities, and to do that we need to follow the awesome diets they are endorsing right? NO! Wrong, wrong, wrong! Did you know that some celebrities are paid up to 3 million dollars to endorse products and diets?! I know! Can you believe it?
I recently saw an add that drove me nuts! Picture this, a gorgeous slim woman probably in her 20’s, standing in front of her bedroom dresser holding up her skimpy bikini with a worried expression on her face, then flash to celebrity model, standing in front of a shelf of diet supplements, saying that if you want to feel good in your bikini and look amazing then take these pills!!! The next scene shows the 20’s girl poolside wearing her bikini looking and feeling totally fabulous, like these pills had suddenly and magically erased all her previous feelings of insecurity! Are you serious? I turned to my husband and said I don’t understand how any celebrity, or even non celebrity could endorse such a product, you couldn’t pay me anything to be in that ad. It is one thing to endorse healthy living and losing weight in a healthy way, but to depict this slim woman as someone who needs to loose weight and feel negative about her body image is just plain crazy, and irresponsible!
I am not a diet queen, frankly I am not even a diet princess, and it’s not because I have a model like figure, or even that I have a super healthy body image, in fact I could loose a few kilograms, but I am just not a fan of dieting.
Now when I was 15 that wasn’t the case, my best friend and I were always starting diets, I say starting because we would start and then stop, and do that all over again. To be honest looking back we didn’t actually need to loose weight. This obsession with diets actually lead to unhealthy choices, like stuffing our faces with chocolate the day before we would start our diet. Often my BFF would sleep over and we would stay up until midnight drinking Milo and eating treats, we can laugh about it now, but the fact is, it is sad that young girls think that they need to go on diets at all. Another friend and I shopped for diet pills, I have blogged previously about how insane it is that a chemist could sell diet pills to 16 year old girls who were already within a healthy weight range!
Young girls are extremely impressionable, but it’s not just young girls, it is young boys too and it often follows us into adulthood. People are constantly on diets and the media promotes it. Shows like The Biggest Loser and Bringing Sexy Back get great ratings because people are diet obsessed. I read an article once saying in America alone the weight loss industry is worth 20 Billion dollars a year, so it is no wonder they want to keep promoting diet pills, drinks and other products to people who don’t even need to lose weight.
It is not just advertising that promotes unhealthy dieting, I remember watching the television series Survivor and these contestants would come off the show with people commenting on their amazing weight loss, I have to wonder what was so amazing about it, yes it is great to be in the healthy weight range, but should we really be celebrating someone losing weight because they were starved for months living almost solely on a diet of rice!
There is a commercial for a show at the moment about weight loss with a women who I think looks fabulous already, saying she her husband, and father of her children, has never seen her naked, and so she needs to loose weight so she feels comfortable to be naked in from of him. To me this seems like a woman who is in need of self confidence, not weight loss. Yes getting fit and healthy will be great for her, but she clearly needs to work on her emotional issues first and foremost. Feeling comfortable in front of your life partner should not be about your weight, it should be about having a healthy body image, and love and respect for oneself.
It is virtually impossible to talk about diets without talking about women’s magazines, so I am going to give them a mention. I must confess as a young girl I loved Dolly, Cleo and Cosmopolitan magazines, I would read how these supermodels drank this, ate that, and worked out, there was always some new amazing diet and it was guaranteed to have you looking fabulous for Summer, or have you drop those dress sizes before the end of year dance, yeah right! I haven’t looked at those magazines in years, (I got side tracked with wedding, parenting, and house mags for quite a while, and now I love curling up with a great book). But standing in the supermarket I do like to have a cheeky flip through a trashy magazine (shh don’t tell anyone), I like to see the celeb’s with their cute newborn babies, or out with their pets, (too cute)! What I also notice though is diet this, diet that, and all the celebrity bashing if they gain or even lose weight! Oh yes, it’s not just the overweight that get ridiculed, it’s the underweight too! And beyond that it’s also the ones who have a perfectly healthy body! (Newsflash magazine editors! Some women are just naturally thin, it doesn’t mean they have anorexia or bulimia). And watch out if you’re in the healthy weight range because they’ll just zoom in on your cellulite instead!
So clearly I am not a diet queen, but it doesn’t mean I am an eat whatever you want, whenever you feel like it advocate either. We all have different body shapes and metabolism rates. And the fact is even if someone is within the healthy weight range it doesn’t mean they are healthy. High Cholesterol and other health issues related to bad eating habits do not always equal being overweight, so just because you can eat whatever you like without gaining weight doesn’t mean you should! We need to be concious of what we put in our mouths, Heart disease is the single biggest killer of women in Australia, and according to ‘Live Science” Coronary Heart Disease is the biggest killer in the world.
Let’s face it pretty much anything is OK in moderation, at least that’s my policy. I must be honest as much as I love my broccoli, I am also a lover of chocolate, the darker the better, and my morning coffee is often accompanied by a slice of chocolate pumpkin loaf on a Friday from my local cafe (as the mums from school know). I refuse to starve myself, or eat no carbs, I start everyday with a healthy breakfast of 1 Weetbix, a scoop of Allbran and a sprinkling of psyllium husk, soy milk on top. Coffee at around 10 am (with naughty treat), Lunch varies, a sandwich, soup, salad, pasta with tuna and some peas and carrots, or sushi if I am out. Dinner is some variety of vegetables or salad, and a cup of tea to finish the day, (and the more stressed I feel the more chocolate that finds its way into my mouth, I still don’t know how that happens? Oh yes I put it there).
I try to keep most of my food healthy, but it is not a diet, if I want something I have it, and I guess it’s the snacking that sometimes goes too far. I just want to enjoy my life, and enjoy my food, I want to go out with a girlfriend and enjoy sharing a piece of cake, but I also need to keep in mind that if I do that everyday I will be unhealthy. I also have to remember that I have 3 little children watching me, so I don’t want to be dieting in front of them. My eldest daughter Aspen is 12, almost a teen and her body is slowly changing, she is becoming more self concious, so the last thing I want to do is set an example of unhealthy eating, or dieting. Even if I am having a day where I feel yuck, or negative about my body I still parade around the house like I have the most awesome body, because I am proud of my body, and I want my children to be proud of their shape, and make healthy choices throughout their lives.
My advice rock the body you’ve got!
Thanks for joining me, love Mackenzie xx
It wasn’t me who ate all the broccoli