As a mother to two teenage girls watching some of the advertisements on social media is really concerning as it relates to body image. I recently turned 40 and there’s “no shame in my game”, I posted a picture of what my body looks like now and how proud I am of it. That’s more than I can stay for some of the advertising I know my daughters see every single day.
Multi-Grain Cheerios launched a campaign to draw attention to the unhealthy body image messages disguised as harmless entertainment that are having a serious impact on kids across Canada. To help bring awareness and attention to this issue, we gave this harmful content a name – Dietainment.
It seems as if everything shown on tv, in movies or magazines is about being slim and skinny, eating special diets, taking special diet pills or even harmful workout programs to look a certain way. My daughters are aware of this type of advertising as I spoke with my daughter about about this last year, when she was just in junior high. Now that she’s in high school I chatted with her to see if things are different. Unfortunately, I think they are the same if not worse!
High school seems to bring on more expectations of what it means to look “good”. Regardless of how much she’s told that she’s beautiful by her parents, friends or even her baby brother, she feels the need to comment about her looks and how she may want to change them.
She’s exposed to Dietainment everywhere. Take a look at the magazines while in the grocery store checkout line. How about those commercials that come on as she watches her favourite show? What about the ads that have now taken over social media?
As a mom, it can be tough to watch your daughters trying to meet someone else’s standards. I took a look at the worldwithoutdieting.ca website to read a few of the resources they provide to keep the conversation positive with my girls. It’s all about balance and education. While I know that some of the material is geared at girls, it happens to boys too. I have a son who I know will experience this in his future as well, so I want to be prepared.
Thanks to media partners like Faze.ca (@fazemagazine) and Divine.ca (@divinedotca), there’s a shift in awareness that goes beyond our homes. The petition assists in speaking with several Canadian media organizations and content publishers to ask them to be considerate about when and where this type of content appears.
It’s one step at a time, and I hope you will join me in signing the #StopDietainment petition: https://worldwithoutdieting.ca/
Thanks so much for your support!