Kim K’s Dangerous Diet Gives Teens & Tweens Unhealthy Body Image
For everyone who is on social media, all eyes seemed to be on Kim Kardashian this past Monday for a couple of reasons: one being that she was wearing the iconic Marilyn Monroe “Happy Birthday” dress at the Met Gala, and the other being that she revealed in an interview with VOGUE that she lost 16 pounds in three weeks in order to fit into it.
Many people and celebrities (one being Lili Reinhart) have criticized Kim for glorifying unhealthy and unrealistic weight loss as well as the idea that a woman’s body is supposed to morph or change to fit the clothes and not the other way around.
So how can this crazy diet give people, especially kids, the wrong impression? Dietitian Nichola Ludlam-Raine told insider.com that celebrities talking about these unhealthy diets can be “dangerous to vulnerable people,” those being people who are combating an eating disorder or young children.
As many parents know, when kids follow celebrities and other influencers on social media, they tend to compare their lives and routines, and in some cases might feel unhappy or unfulfilled in their lives. This could lead to kids trying to make drastic changes to their lives that could eventually be harmful or unhealthy.
According to Hassenfeld Children’s Hospital at NYU Langone, one of the most common eating disorders that they commonly see in children and adolescents is Anorexia Nervosa, which is when kids have an, “intense fear of getting fat or gaining weight” and “they may be preoccupied with food and have a distorted body image, perceiving themselves as “fat” even when very thin”.
This eating disorder could cause kids to not eat certain foods or enough food overall in order to maintain a weight that is lower than it should be for their height and weight. When people start to limit or get rid of certain foods in their diet (for example, Kardashian says she cut carbs and sugar completely out of her diet in order to lose weight), it could significantly hurt their bodies by not giving it the necessary nutrients that it needs.
Ludlam-Raine told Insider, “It’s not sustainable to cut out all carbs (and sugar) long term, as they’re what our body and brain uses as fuel,”. These types of foods, and all others for that matter, are essential to incorporate into a kids diet and as parents, experts say that you should be making sure your kids are consuming a wide variety of foods and are getting the necessary calorie intake for your kids each day.
What Should Parents Do if They See Their Children Struggling with an Eating Disorder?
Addressing eating disorders with kids can be challenging and uncomfortable for many parents. According to John Hopkins Medicine, one of the most important steps for a parent to take is to reach out to a trusted adult or professional in order to get information about the right care, evaluation, diagnosis and treatment plan that your kids will need.
It is also very important to show your kids that they have constant support from you and the rest of the family. Battling an eating disorder can be very challenging, especially for a young child, so helping your kids fight their eating disorder and being actively involved in their recovery is a crucial step in their journey.
If you are looking for extra help and support, here are some online resources families can use:
- The National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA)
- National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders
- National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI)