Diets are always a tricky subject in modern society. On the one hand, a shocking 26.9 per cent of Britons are obese, making us the most obese country in Europe. So, it’s not unreasonable to think that slimming down should be a priority. After all, obesity can lead to severe health conditions, including heart disease and diabetes.
At the same time, we’re caught in a ‘body-confidence’ conflict. Many now fight against the stereotypical thin models we see bandied around our media. Instead, plus size models are all the rage, and mention of losing weight is just about off the cards. After all, the problem is with our media making us feel bad about our bodies. Isn’t it?
Yes and no. There’s no denying that media representation has its flaws. A ‘normal’ body size for a model is well below the healthy BMI. As such, people who don’t actually need to lose weight feel under pressure to be thinner. That’s not good for anyone. But, when you look at those obesity figures, you can’t help but admit that something needs to change. While being too thin is equally bad for your health, being overweight shouldn’t be the norm. Doesn’t that attitude create as many problems as it attempts to solve? The primary focus, when it comes to body image, should be the health of those in question.
Even if we’re agreed that weight loss isn’t always bad, we face another dilemma. How do we go about achieving that goal? Weight loss is a minefield with one explosion per minute. Any way you turn, you’ll come across opposition. Weight loss supplements get the most flack, but diet plans aren’t far behind. At some point, you have to question how society expects us to go about losing that weight. When there’s no ‘right’ way of doing things, is it any wonder we’re having such difficulty overcoming our obesity epidemic?
Out of all these wrong choice, one thing gets the most flack. When you consider that people hate the media and the diet plans, it’s easy to see what that might be. Celebrities have been endorsing diet plans since the beginning of time. Okay, perhaps not, but it seems like it. Many fads and trends start in Hollywood, and this is where the majority of diet plans gain footing. With a familiar face seemingly shedding the pounds (whether they need to or not), many of us jump on the bandwagon. If it’s good enough for our idols, after all …
Most recently, these celeb diets have been making the headlines:
The baby food plan
Okay, a baby food diet doesn’t exactly sound like the healthiest thing out there. But, apparently, it’s hot stuff at the moment. You stock up on baby food and eat that for two meals a day. Model and designer, Camila Alves, is a strong advocate for the plan. ‘I did a cleanse, and there were a lot of puréed meals, and my body just agreed with it’, she said. But, when pureeing all her food become a challenge, she subbed it for baby food instead. Who wouldn’t, after all? And, Alves isn’t the only celebrity to dabble in the baby diet. It’s also rumoured that Lady Gaga has given this one a shot.
The vegan diet
The vegan diet has been gaining popularity in the celeb world for a while. And no; it isn’t only because celebs love the animals. Big names, like Beyonce and Lea Michelle, have spotted the health benefits of a diet like this. It’s as simple as it sounds — no meat or dairy, and as many whole foods as you can shake a stick at. Forget the thin and malnourished idea you have of vegans. These celebs are showing that you can glow on this diet.
The Cambridge weight plan
Every now and again, a calorie-controlled diet plan makes its way into the celebrity circuit. It should go without saying that we have the good-old Weight Watchers diet. It’s been around for years with varied success. But, coming up on the left, we also have the Cambridge weight plan. Like Weight Watchers, you stick to a plan of small meals on a regular basis, all of which have been calorie counted and sent to your door. It certainly seems to have worked for Martine McCutcheon, who revealed her smaller waist on Instagram earlier this year. Past advocates also include Lauren Goodger, who reported mixed successes.
These are by no means the only plans doing the rounds at the moment. As you can see, it’s a mixed bag with varied results. But, perhaps we shouldn’t dismiss every plan the celebs get behind. Media representation aside, celebs have hordes of people behind them telling them how they should look. While not healthy, this does ensure that they follow the best plans.
That said, it isn’t all plain sailing. A diet is a personal thing. Just because a celeb is doing it, doesn’t mean it will work for you. But the answer here is simple. Don’t follow blindly; do your research. You may find that, instead of the Cambridge diet, you want to try something like the Shake That Weight Plan. This is just like the Cambridge diet in many ways, but with lower calorie meals which allow you to eat more throughout the day. If you’re a snacker, this would obviously work better for you.
It’s also worth noting that you rarely see a celeb getting hot and sticky in the exercise department. And, it doesn’t get much better for losing weight than moving your body. Again, this is an issue of media representation. A sweaty celeb is hardly appealing. You may see them doing gentle exercise videos, but famous faces are rarely painted as keen runners.
To sum up, this, like many things, is an issue of balance. Perhaps we shouldn’t dismiss celeb diets altogether. But, nor should we follow them blindly. When it comes to matters of health, the important thing is always mind over matter.