It is no question that diet culture has become more common over the years with the growing popularity of social media and the influencers who dominate it.
Scrolling through a feed where you are told you can shed weight by drinking a tea or receive a discount code for a cosmetic procedure can be very misleading and affect one’s confidence.
However, this content will soon become more filtered, as Instagram has announced a new policy in which posts that promotes weight loss or cosmetic procedures will be blocked from users who are under the age of 18.
Furthermore, CNN reports that any content that is linked to a discount code or money value in reference to certain diets or products that promote rapid weight loss will be removed from the site completely.
This policy is an important step for the site in consideration of the impact that influencers who promote these products have over their following.
While minors are not the only ones who are susceptible to these claims, they may be easier to convince. Given that many influencers are now required to state when they are promoting a product or service, it does not eliminate the fact that some followers will try anything to be more like those they admire.
Convincing or not, it is unfair to promote such claims that are highly inaccurate and are often posted through sponsored content.
I do not know how many posts I have seen of Kim Kardashian stating how happy she was to wake up to such a lean stomach after drinking a detox tea.
It is posts such as these that promote unrealistic expectations of the perfect bodies seen behind your screen.
However, some things that you don’t see in these posts are the hours of exercising or cosmetic procedures influencers expose themselves to.
The pressures to conform and appeal to the ideal body standards are already so intense; they do not need to be reinstated through social platforms.
Instead, content should be inclusive of body positivity and healthy lifestyles that are realistic and attainable. This new policy is not restricted to just Instagram; however, Facebook will be implementing it as well.
Ultimately, this is a change that needed to be made. Influencers are aware of the impact that they have over society and they should not take advantage of it by promoting such fads that they know are impractical.
Making money should never be valued more than the confidence and well-being of those that admire you the most.
Hopefully, this policy is just the beginning of changes that can promote body positivity while preventing social media posts that idealize unrealistic expectations.
At any age, it is important to see your own value and potential without being prompted to compare yourself to someone else’s lifestyle or weight loss journey.
While this change is only a step, it is a significant attempt to create a platform that is not so focused on diet culture and body image.
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