With summer approaching and the world of social media, reality shows and tv daytime chat literally shoving the “bikini body” message down our throats, what’s actually real and what do we need to ignore? With the desperation to lose weight across many peoples minds, it’s safe to say healthy eating unfortunately is NOT on these guys minds. With all the trends and products out there, I’ve decided to talk about my top 4 insta trends that literally make me want to pull my hair out.
Unfortunately this post contains lots of reality TV stars. That’s not to say all reality TV stars are the same, but unfortunately, some are just sucked in to the money making dietary product industry.
Let’s start of with the one that’s dominated our screens for years… the meal replacement shakes. Whyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy. Why are we skipping meals to lose weight?
If you google “meal replacement shakes”, you literally get HUNDREDS appearing on your screen, which makes me very upset as both a professional and a body confidence ambassador. These shakes often do make you lose weight RAPIDLY, due to the low calorie option compared to your meals you should be eating, but it’s not a healthy mechanism. Weight loss should be slow and sustainable, and of course, MAINTAINABLE!
At the end of the day, this isn’t a sustainable lifestyle choice and means you’re depriving yourself on a whole variety of foodie goodness, food groups and of course, vitamins and minerals – despite what those shake boxes may say. The answer, FOOD FIRST, always!
Yes, nutritional shakes are often used in the clinic settings – called nutritional supplements. These are only used when advised and/or prescribed by a medical professional when patients may be at risk of malnutrition OR cannot physically eat (such as tube feeding!).
Also, have you ever actually tried one of these things? They’re rank. Like, ew. Gimme a banana and toast any day!
Right so let’s cut the BS on this one… THEY’RE JUST SWEETS! The claim on the sweets is that they contain “glucomannan” – a type of fibre which makes you feel fuller and curb your appetite. A study in 2013 by Keithley et al. in fact found that when analysing a group of 53 participants against a placebo for 8 weeks, the “”fibre”” had no significant amount of weight loss, reduction in body composition and feelings of fullness compared to the placebo. These gummies and supplements also can make a hefty little dent in your bank balance.
If you want to feel fuller for longer, why not up your fruit and vegetables to snack on and have at meal times – increases fibre, vitamins and minerals? Again, like the shakes, they’re another fad that encourages people to skip meals – DON’T SKIP MEALS TO LOSE WEIGHT. It’s an unhealthy mechanism which is NOT sustainable and can leave damaging marks to your health.
And if you want to have sugar free sweets to have in between meals every now and again, why not just buy some sugar free gummies from your supermarket??? They’re less than a £1 rather than costing nearly £30!
THE ALLERGY TESTS
Nothing ruffles my feathers like these allergy tests. As someone with serious allergies and anaphylaxis, who’s had extensive tests and a regular review with an immunologist, not only are these tests stupid but dangerous.
The tests claim that they measure the level of IgG antibodies in your finger prick (blood) to assess what you “react” to. IgG however does NOT measure allergy.. it’s measures exposure! So if you’ve recently just eaten a certain food type or have it a lot, it’s gonna come up in that test result. There’s very little scientific research and evidence behind both IgG tests and diagnosing food intolerances… so best stick with the professionals on this one. Or, yourself? Surely YOU know if you even get symptoms to foods… you don’t need a box to tell you that.
They also come in “Standard” and “premium” – I’m sorry? Are some food intolerances more premium that others? Makes me laugh that stuff. M o n e y M a k i n g huns x
Also, £262?!?!?!?!?! Yes, waiting on the NHS can be a bummer, but if it is a serious allergy, you often get fast tracked to see a professional (i did!). And having it correctly assessed and treated by a medical professional is a must. Immunologists, consultants, Dietitians – we’re all professionals and specialists in what we do. For example, stomach cramps and pains may be from something more sinister such as irritable bowel disease which requires treatment – I’m sorry but no allergy test will do that!
Plus they offer a chat with a nutritional therapist – do you know you can literally PAY to be called that… like £25 too. Can’t be trusted, soz.
The waist trainers
Like… wtf? An absolute stupid fitness craze which shouldn’t be taking off hunnies…
Whilst the instant effect can make your waist line lose a few cms for a few hours or too, but as soon as you move around, eat and rehydrate it all goes back to normal. What these celebrity ads don’t highlight is that these waist trainers don’t get rid of fat… but also don’t improve your nutritional well being what-so-ever! Some studies have also shown that they can rejig your organs about, squish em and all that. Nooooot good. Our fat is there to protect our organs and keep them safe, not squash them up against your rib cage!!!!
It’s also an AWFUL trend to be advertising to young girls. Not only is it promoting unhealthy body shapes and unrealistic ideals, waist trainers can have a devastating effect on growth, bones and muscles. And again, squishing those superhero organ guys, please, no!!!
But guys, if you want some REAL body loving and bikini ready accounts, I’ve linked some fab insta accounts down below!
Emma is a Registered Dietitian and Registered Associate Nutritionist based in Cheshire, England. Emma works in community healthcare and writes freelance alongside her work: topics including Dietetic life, nutrition, mental health and lifestyle. Emma also writes and photographs recipes for the platform, as well as being the author of the ‘Mummy and Me’ series for SR Nutrition. Emma’s Food Stories is PR friendly brand.