By Fiona Sutherland
Weight Watchers going Body Positive? We call bullshit!
Weight Watchers wants you to feel good about yourself *oh look…..a unicorn doing a jig!*
So – apparently Weight Watchers want to ‘end fat shaming’. In order to do this they’ve stuck some nude pictures of women into their shitty weight loss magazine. “While it’s great to shed a few pounds when you feel it’s necessary, it’s even more important to learn to love and embrace your body at any stage — flaws and all.” #ohpleasestop
So..erm…let’s get this straight:
You should love your body *but it would be better if it changed*
Love the skin you’re in *but only once said skin is trim, taught & bikini-ready!*
Appreciate what your body can do *but it’s more important what it looks like*
Appreciate your inner self *but not if you’re fat – lose the pounds first*
Treat your body well by exercising regularly, eating nutritious foods and avoiding crazy yo-yo diets*ummmmm riiiiight – irony much?*
Don’t feel you have to change for anyone *but us! Join our Lifetime Membership Program y’all!*
Aaaaaand in other news, the coal industry is fighting for clean energy, and Hooters is gunning for feminism. Sorry Weight Watchers – we’re calling bullshit. You don’t get to make your money off the backs of body dissatisfaction and then claim to CARE! If you cared then do the right thing – close your doors. Fold the business. Donate your profits to eating disorder clinics around the world.
Don’t try and manipulate body positivity, mindful eating and other ideas that HAVE NOTHING to do with weight, or weight loss. At the very least – please get real because the veiled attempts at pretending you give a shit are really tiresome. Your advertising directly preys on people’s insecurities and promotes the idea that you’ll be happier and more confident by losing weight. You use fear of fat, and shame, to perpetuate the idea that we’re not enough as we are, we must change & that if we’re smaller, we’re better, more valuable, more worthy. Yours is a shame-based business that is built on the idea that smaller is preferred, and that controlling your food makes for a better person. It keeps the narrative alive that self worth is contingent on weight, shape and compliant eating behaviour. Whilst we’re keeping the focus on weight, we’re not really addressing the REAL reasons we’re not living the life we want, and deserve. Yep, you care. Clearly.
And obviously, you understand the issues around shame, and the body yeah? Your current slogan for WW Australia is “live larger in the smaller, healthier body.” Yep, clearly someone has a PhD in body politics to come up with that winner. YOUR WHOLE INDUSTRY IS BUILT ON BODY SHAME YOU MORONS.
Weight Watchers (and seriously, EVERY company,organisation, group and individual that is using Body Positivity to sell your shit), maybe instead you could invest in a company that promotes women to focus on the stuff that really matters and can make a positive contribution to the world – like equality, like education, like FKIN ANYTHING ELSE BUT DIETING AND WORRYING ABOUT THE BODY ? Geez..
Frankly, it’s downright insulting to genuine people who are dedicating their lives to building Body Positivity for it to be stolen by the dieting industry. It feels grubby, and very wrong. We agree on one thing (and one thing only) – that Body Positive IS AWESOME! But it does NOT belong in dietland. We see you. We call bullshit.
Fiona Sutherland is a Melbourne-based Dietitian and Director of Body Positive Australia which offers therapy, retreats, yoga & training for health professionals. Fiona is a specialist in Mindful Eating, Body Image and Eating Disorders, working with individuals, groups, communities and organisations to support people to find a more peaceful and positive relationship with food, eating and their body. She is a passionate advocate for mindfulness, the Non Diet Approach and Body Positive movement, and aims to spread the word about body acceptance, turning away from diets and nourishing ourselves in an authentic way that truly meets the needs of our body and mind.
She can be found at www.bodypositiveaustralia.com.au
This article was originally published at Body Positive Australia