(Beware-irony infused rant ahead.)
The diet industry’s estimated yearly revenue pops up every now and then in various outlets and up until now I’ve paid it no attention.
Firstly, because I have a hard time wrapping my head around such a large number.
Secondly, because I’ve always thought “what does that have to do with me?”
So, if that’s your thinking, keep reading(and if it’s not, keep reading anyway : ) ).
That bigger than big hunk of cash that goes to everything from the factories producing meal replacement shakes, to the people selling yachts to the latest diet gurus, is coming out of our pockets!
It’s a scary thought (but I challenge you to go there) to think of the money, time and energy we’ve spent buying into the diet industry bullshit. And for what? To be able to hold on to the illusion that we are in complete control of our bodies (which, by the way, we are not). The diet industry is a nifty thief and we’ve (semi-)willingly been letting it steal from us.
And this is how it will continue if we keep believing that we’re only one successful credit card transaction away from salvation.
I, for one, have a hard time keeping my insane rage at bay when thinking about the gross amounts of cash we are putting into the hands of people, whose only mission it is to profit from our miserable selves going from “failed” diet to “failed” diet (and of course the misguided ones who actually believe in their low carb, schmow carb, high carb, schmigh carb diets, no protein, schmow protein…okay, you get the point).
Money and time that could be spent seeing the world, doing charity work, hosting fabulous dinners, learning Italian, going for bike rides, doing crafts with your kids et cetera.
And while Oprah is busy buying Weight Watcher shares (and getting even richer by the minute) and revamping the “lifetime membership” (with its inherent failure setup, designed to keep us coming back for more) through her endorsement (OMG, have you heard, Oprah eats bread!), other diet companies are doing what the beauty industry started doing some years ago.
This, because people are starting to catch on to the latest findings on the ineffectiveness of diets.
Just like Dove created the “Real Beauty” campaign (which has it’s points but what is ‘real beauty’ anyway and isn’t it beside the point?), diet companies are now riding the wave of eating “for health” (as opposed to weight loss) while still relying on the support of the “failed” dieters (because too many of us still equate health and weight but that’s a topic for another day).
So what is a girl, that has dedicated a large portion of her earnings to buying diet pills, books, programs, infomercial exercise equipment, to do? Stop. Just stop. It’s that easy (and that hard). Whenever you feel like you ‘need’ spend your coins on something in the name of self-(or body) improvement, stop and think again. If what you’re buying is designed to keep you stuck in a “on the wagon/off the wagon” cycle then it’s not for you.
P.S. I forgot to mention that Oprah also allows herself to top off her morning piece of bread with 1/8 of an avocado! 1/8!! Now isn’t that the way to live?