I was forwarded this link last week with regards to Weight Watchers.
Weight Watchers will be offering free spots for Teens from 13, if they are with a full paying adult, Slimming World already offers it from age 11.
To be honest I’m gobsmacked.
There is so much I see that is wrong with this.
We have an obesity issue with our kids as well as our adults.
However, as some of you know, you can be fit, strong and healthy and overweight according to the charts they use.
So, realistically it is not an obesity issue we have, it’s a movement issue.
We move more, the obesity issue doesn’t become such an issue.
Now getting back to this story.
Now both offer groups that give you weekly public weigh ins, now these cause enough stress with the adults that go to them and can make or break your week. You can be made to feel like a complete failure if you don’t lose weight or god help you if you put some on.
Now, imagine that but in the mind of a self-conscious teenager.
How are they going to feel?
You can have a whole room of people telling you not to worry about it, but one person says that is a shame then that is the one you will focus on.
They have enough to deal with in their lives with social media portraying that they should look this way or that way.
They don’t need Sandra (this was the first name to pop in my head, I just feel that the coordinator may be called this) making them feel shit because they didn’t lose weight.
They are teenagers, their body is still developing, they are also at that lucky stage on their lives where if they make a small change to their lives a whole lot can change to their bodies.
Their hormones will also need to be taken into account, growth spurts will come into play, how many kids do you know that go out before they go up.
So, they are either going to be made to feel awful or grow skinny as fuck.
Most adults that go to these clubs don’t generally have a good relationship with food, which is why they are there.
Most of the people that have used them in the past that I have trained have spent their life yo yo dieting because they don’t learn anything from it.
They have their own issues with it.
Why would you want to put that on to your child at these things?
Both of these have their place in the world and they do work for people, but do they work long term, ask yourself what their actual success rate is.
Long term it’s not brilliant.
In fact, it’s crap, all it does in then set Slimming World & Weight Watchers up with members for life, oh I’ve put on a bit time to back to it.
Educating the parents in how to eat healthy, how to eat well and still have a bit of lives enjoyments is the way forward, when the kids see how their parents are doing then they will take it on.
The number of parents that come trough these doors here and make a change to their lives and then inspire their kids to do something is huge.
You need to be teaching habits.
Not teaching that there is good food and bad food and that certain foods are a syn.
How does that help with someone’s relationship with food?
There is no good food or bad food, it’s just the amount of food you eat.
You all know, you could lose weight just eating chocolate but is it the best thing for you?
Of course not.
The parent should be cooking real, nutrient dense foods at home and giving decent portions not massive portions to feed a small country.
Schools should also be teaching how to cook decent meals instead of how to cook a cake.
The people to educate and inspire the kids coming through are passing it on to someone else.
Would we be needing to talk about this if parents cooked nutrient dense meals instead of living of processed food and takeaways which are all high in calories.
Would we need to be talking about this if our lives weren’t so sedentary?
With kids, there is a fine line when it comes to food and body image on keeping an eye on it being healthy and it is becoming an obsession which can lead down so very dark holes.
The kids at this age are very impressionable.
You must be careful on how you put things.
We are seeing more and more kids coming out with mental health issues and eating disorders.
We don’t need to be feeding that troll.
So, why don’t as parents take some responsibility and step up and show our kids the benefits of eating well, enjoying a 80/20 diet and moving more, exercising and being fucking brilliant.
Show them that by doing that you will feel better, look better and be healthier.
Lead by example.
So instead of taking them on to this rollercoaster ride of hating themselves and yo yo dieting, majority of teens now actually hate themselves and the way they look. They get enough negativity in the world from social media they don’t anymore from Sandra who has been in Weight Watchers or Slimming World for most of her life and went in there to lose weight and to be honest could still do with it.
So, do I think it’s a good thing.
Do I think kids need to eat better and move more.
Where does it come from?
Parents or other positive role models in their lives.
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