Last year, ahead of the whole world’s apparent “LOSE WEIGHT IN 2014” New Year’s Resolution mayhem, Special K launched a campaign encouraging women to stop “fat talking” about themselves. It argued that the brutal way in which women talk about themselves – using words like fatty, cow, gross etc – is damaging to their self-esteem. And I agree. We can all be horrible to ourselves – but by silencing that unhelpful inner voice and restricting self-commentary to the more positive, constructive tones you would use with a friend we can stop bullying our already trashed self-confidences and help build ourselves up in to happy, well-rounded human beings (hopefully who know there’s more to life than not having a thigh gap).
But you know what? No, Special K. No, you do not get to sell yourself as a brand who cares about empowering women. You – with a product that has been banned in Denmark for potential health risks when eaten every day; your short term weight loss promises; or your 2012 ASA ban in Britain for “misleading information about calorific value and weightloss” – you are not a company who gives one tiny crap about the well-being and happiness of women at large. Your diet encourages a distorted relationship with food designed to sell more of your own products: and because it’s well established that diets fail, you can rest assure that your customers will keep coming back. You are part of the problem: and you do not get to sell your exploitative wares back to the very women you’re helping to manipulate under the guise of empowerment. Graaaa.
New Year’s dieters, spend your money elsewhere. You deserve better.