After stumbling across the 4 part series on BBC2, The men who made us thin I finally felt like I could breath a sigh of relief that someone has exposed the diet industry. I am aware that this programme is not going to change anything drastically but I honestly feel that the more we can make light of what is really happening within the food & diet industry the more people will start to wake up and listen.
The programme investigates the connections between obesity and weight loss, and confronts some of the men making a fortune from our desire to become thin. But it goes much deeper than that. The presenter interviews people such as the Slimfast billionaire to the former director of Weight Watchers who admits that customer failure was a significant factor in the company's profits: people have to keep coming back and that only 12% of their customers keep the weight off after 4 years. Pierre Dukan says that only 25% of people that by his book and attempt his diet actually succeed but then they put the weight back on that is only 1 in 4! Scientists say, that if you loose a considerable amount of weight, after 2 years you will put that weight back on again and possibly more.
The reason I started my company Honestly Healthy is because I was a victim of these fad diets. I tried everything from the Maple syrup to protein only to citrus and fish to juice fasts to cabbage soup diet and even went for blood tests and did the metabolic balance where I had to measure and weigh every meal out - I have tried most of them and lost weight for a couple months but without failure put it all back on and more. I have yo-yoed with diets my whole life, which had a massively negative impact on my mind and how I approached food, which was anything but healthy. Actually bordering on obsessive. It wasn't until I came to my wits end and found alkaline eating that I created my own healthy LIFESTYLE that worked for me. Gradually over the course of 3 years lost & kept off over 2 ½ stone. Quick fixes do not work and the sooner people catch on to this the better, not only for their health but their sanity.
If we can have more education on what is healthy and what we can eat in moderation we should never have to diet ever again. If there was a diet that worked there would only be one.
Let me talk about the newest fad - The 5:2, scientifically it makes perfect sense for your health on a long term basis only if you eat a healthy balanced diet. However, the way the media portrays it is that you can eat whatever you like for 5 days and then starve yourself for the remaining 2 - this I think encourages binge eating on a rather drastic level.
The power of the media and our utter obsession with celebrities and being just like them has a profound effect on our eating habits, causing children as young as 10 years old to adapt eating disorders. This is not healthy. The louder we can shout that #dietsdontwork and promote living and eating a healthy lifestyle the better. I might just put some billionaires noses out of joint but perhaps then they might think about a healthier way to make their money.