Healthy Living

This 'Fat-Shaming' Meal Planner Company Sends Harmful Mixed Messages

What is happening?

A U.K. company is under fire for its “fat-shaming” food journals, which contain phrases like “I want to skinny dip, not chunky dunk,” and “fridge pickers wear big knickers.”

Blogger Charlotte Moor tweeted a photo last week of Fox & Moon’s products, which ship internationally, alongside the caption “It’s literally the worst thing being fat isn’t it.”

Someone from the brand promptly responded via direct messages, Moor said, saying she should be ashamed of herself for “being so mean” about something she knows “nothing about.”

The company did not return a request for comment by time of publication.

The various phrases printed on the planners are troubling on their own, but a peek at the brand’s Instagram is even more disheartening. Much of the content equates thinness with goodness, places emotional value on food and preaches the importance of losing weight.

Tuesday's talking to... Say no to the donuts!! 🍩 #foxandmoon #personalisedcovers

A post shared by Fox & Moon Ltd (@fox_and_moon) on

My Christmas vibes be like... 🧀🍾 #foxandmoon #personalisedcovers #backinstock3rdjan

A post shared by Fox & Moon Ltd (@fox_and_moon) on

Another chunk of messaging preaches that followers should be themselves, eat whatever they want and feel confident in their own skin.

2017 goals be like 👆#foxandmoon

A post shared by Fox & Moon Ltd (@fox_and_moon) on

Someone at the brand posted an Instagram after watching a program about overcoming cancer that “put things in perspective,” sharing a photo of a journal that reads “let guys reject you for your personality.”

Moor told Metro UK she believes the company doesn’t realize the effect the phrases can have on a person. “For people struggling with eating disorders, phrases like this can be really damaging,” she said.

Some Fox & Moon commenters were quick to say the products are lighthearted, not meant to be taken seriously. But mixed messaging like this can create harmful associations with food and our bodies in general. Some 20 million women and 10 million men in the U.S. alone will suffer from “a clinically significant eating disorder at some time in their life,” according to the National Eating Disorders Association, and more than 725,000 people in the U.K. are affected by an eating disorder, too.

That’s not something to make into a joke, or a profit.