There are a lot of companies out there who sell weight loss. Big and small, successful or not. Weight loss is a market that makes billions of dollars even though research shows that keeping weight off is the exception, rather than the rule.
There is a small subset of these companies who take weight loss and wrap it up in buzzwords such as body positivity, and autonomy, and empowerment. They may even say that they are anti-diet and that they are helping you break free of shame so you can finally lose the weight in a body positive way.
They are full of bullshit.
They have taken actual issues, like bodily autonomy which is often tied to women breaking free from others’ control of their bodies and lives, and have put us back in the box that says “you still need to be preoccupied with how small your body is”. They have perverted our true empowerment and say that an obsession with weight loss can set you free.
WEIGHT LOSS OBSESSION WILL NEVER SET YOUR FREE.
I’m sure you’re probably familiar with this quote:
“A culture fixated on female thinness is not an obsession about female beauty, but an obsession about female obedience. Dieting is the most potent political sedative in women’s history; a quietly mad population is a tractable one.” – Naomi Wolf, The Beauty Myth
The truth is that no matter how weight loss is packaged, it is still diet culture. And diet culture is oppression.
When people sell you weight loss, they are saying that your long-term wellness does not matter because the desire to be thin is more important than the desire to cultivate other aspects of your health. When you lose weight, you will likely gain it back. Then you try again and fail again. You have entered the world of yo-yo dieting which is way worse than simply maintaining your current body weight and adding in more varied nutrition and some physical exercise.
Perhaps they are saying the same things I am! I’ve seen it, trust me. If you follow our program, you’ll be able to keep the weight off.
A program focused on weight loss is still a diet and diets don’t fucking work. I don’t care how much these (usually thin white women) tell you that this will empower you, and it’s okay because autonomy is important.
Of course autonomy is important! So are you going to use your autonomy and empowerment to feed an obsession with thinness? Are you going to buy in the lies of these people? In my opinion this shit is even worse than other weight loss companies. Because they are tricking you into thinking that this is your choice when in reality, you’re just buying into the same bullshit we’ve always been sold.
A diet is a diet is a diet. No matter what kind of pretty faux feminist packaging it is presented in. Hey, selling weight loss is easy! In the end, all the onus is on you for failing, right? And since this is “your choice”, then why aren’t you doing it right?? All the fluff in the world cannot make this okay. Every diet, whether it’s paleo or Weight Watchers or habit based or intermittent fasting…it’s all the same shitty diet culture that exists to make you feel bad. And trust me, you are just another cog in the machine to these people. They sell weight loss because it makes them money, that’s it. It’s easy, it’s self-perpetuating, it’s disgusting.
If you don’t like what I’m saying here, then my question is this. If you stopped focusing on weight loss, what could you accomplish? If you weren’t obsessed with the content/timing/being right about your foods, what else could you do with that energy? How much time do you spend calculating calories or ticking off meal requirements? How much emotional energy are you putting into making sure that your body fits some fucking mold? Wouldn’t you love to do more?
In the end, no matter how it’s packaged, intentional weight loss is still diet culture. And diet culture will never ever set you free from anything. It may blind you to the fact that it’s still about your oppression but I’m here to tell you that it’s not empowering, it’s not positive, and it will not serve you in the long run. And neither will the people selling you this delusion. They will blame you and leave you behind. Bust through their bullshit and leave them behind first. I promise you that it will give you so much more freedom than their feel good lies.