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#wakeupweightwatchers – Getting teens hooked on dieting is bad business!

By Michelle May, M.D.

Weight Watchers was my first diet at 12 years old and Weight Watchers was my last diet at 37. There were 25 years of yo-yo dieting and disordered eating in between. #wakeupweightwatchers

Now Weight Watchers has set a goal to grow their membership to 10 million people and their revenue to $2 BILLION. And do you know what one of their strategies is? This summer, they are going to give free membership to teens 13-17 years old! #wakeupweightwatchers

As a physician, I liken that to giving teens cigarettes… Get them hooked on dieting early, and they will be your return customers for many years to come. This is a disgusting business model! #wakeupweightwatchers

Teens don’t need adults reinforcing the message that their bodies are flawed and that a diet will fix them. Love them instead! #wakeupweightwatchers

Please don’t say, “But this is about health.” It’s not. The link between dieting and eating disorders is clear; this is about diet culture and body shaming. #wakeupweightwatchers

If this upsets you too, hop on twitter and use the hashtag #wakeupweightwatchers to be heard!


About the author

Michelle May, M.D. is a recovered yo-yo dieter and the founder of the Am I Hungry?® Mindful Eating Programs and Training. She is the award-winning author of Eat What You Love, Love What You Eat: A Mindful Eating Program to Break Your Eat-Repent-Repeat Cycle , winner of seven publishing awards. She is also the author of Eat What You Love, Love What You Eat with Diabetes, Eat What You Love, Love What You Eat for Binge Eating, and Am I Hungry? Mindful Eating for Bariatric Surgery. Michelle shares her compelling message and constructive keynotes with audiences around the country, offers workplace wellness programs, and has trained and licensed hundreds of health professionals to facilitate Am I Hungry?® Mindful Eating Programs worldwide. She has been featured on Dr. Oz, the Discovery Health Channel, and Oprah Radio, and quoted in Diabetic Living, Fitness, Health, Huffington Post, Parents, Self, USA Weekend, US News & World Report, WebMD and many others. Her personal success story was published in Chicken Soup for the Dieter's Soul. Michelle cherishes her relationships with her husband, Owen and grown children, Tyler and Elyse. She regularly enjoys practicing yoga and hiking near her home in Phoenix, Arizona. She and Owen, a professional chef, share a passion for gourmet and healthful cooking, wine tasting, photography, and traveling.

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