Standing up to the diet industry

Life isn’t fair. My psychiatrist said that to me, rather bluntly, years ago, when I was crying my way through a session about an injustice that had occurred as a result of my eating disorder. What he meant, when I calmed down sufficiently to reflect, was that by ceasing to expect life to be fair, it takes the pressure off. Eases anxiety. It also liberates one to focus with fresh determination on achieving justice.
In the past three days, a small group of dedicated advocates and hundreds of concerned people around the world have demonstrated that many little ripples can make a big wave on the rocky road to seeking justice for people born with a vulnerability for developing an eating disorder. Thank you to the hundreds of people who have signed a petition here.
(For readers who have just come on board, Lydia Jade Turner explainsOn May 25 Amy Smith, the CEO of Jenny Craig, will present to a conference of educators for the Alliance for Girls’ Schools (AGSA). Described as a “champion of women’s health” by Catherine Misson, Principal of Melbourne Girls Grammar School, Jenny Craig’s CEO will be enlisted to “inspire” attendees: what they learn will impact on what they bring back to the classroom.)
Today, in Australia, the mainstream media took to the issue like hounds after a fox. And who was the fox? This is where the going got tough.
It was not easy for Lydia, and Dannielle Miller, who got eating disorders on the front pages of mainstream newspapers and on drive time radio.
Fighting eating disorders and fighting to get a message across in mainstream media about the seriousness of eating disorders (people die, can’t get more serious than that), are equally tough battles. It does not seem to suit some people with vested interests to take eating disorders seriously. (But) We got some important points across and we won’t give up. Anyone who has survived an eating disorder knows about not giving up. Julie Parker (Melbourne) and Nina Funnell (Sydney) are among the many Australians determined to not let this matter die.
Taking on big corporations (emphasising our issue is with the corporation Jenny Craig, and not the CEO, Amy Smith) takes courage. Charlotte Bevan, UK, writes from her heart in explaining why:
They never like anything that upsets the status quo or threatens their income stream. 
I think we have to remember that we live in a world where fat – all fat – is bad and we are about to all die of obesity.  No one in the real world seems to get that Jenny Craig (owned by Nestle) is in the business of making money – a lot of money – not in the business of making us happy, healthy bunnies.  Repeat business is what they need to sustain their profit levels and repeat business is what they get from hundreds of thousands of (mainly) women, with their self esteem in shreds, because of a number on a scale.

It is nothing but a number, people.  It is not a measure of physical or mental health.  Whether people are eating disordered or not, this constant bullying by the diet industry, which has no evidence base to support its more preposterous claims of becoming happier by losing half a stone (7 lbs or 3.2 kg), is putting people’s mental health at severe risk and ruining lives.
Jeez, they have more power than the tobacco industry had in the 1960s and PEOPLE BELIEVE THEM.
Sigh
It is easy to connect the dots of our message; we want to save lives.

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