The Negative Body-Shaming Language of 2000s Diet Books Is Being Criticized by TikTokers


You simply need to take a look at the media we were consuming just 20 years ago to observe how far our society perspectives have advanced. The height of anti-feminist propaganda were diet books, reality shows that concentrated on weight, and magazines that pitted women against one another in “who wore it best?” sections. The internet is here to remind us that some memories are best left in the past while evenings were spent watching the most recent episodes of “You Are What You Eat,” “Snog, Marry, Avoid,” and “The Biggest Loser,” as well as saving money for the most recent fashion faux-pas advice book.

TikTokers have been revisiting early 2000s cultural moments, particularly the well-known TV style team Trinny and Susannah have received a lot of attention. Trinny Woodall and Susannah Constantine, two style gurus, provided fashion advise in their “What Not to Wear” book series, which was published in 2001 and was based on their 2001 BBC series. However, TikTok user @aimeedoeslife has re-delved into the purported style recommendations, and it’s unsettling to read.

However, it was the terminology used to describe women’s bodies that upset people rather than outmoded prints and outdated trends. We gasped in disbelief when she warned readers not to wear certain things for fear of exposing their “fat sausage” arms, “a pillow of flab” for a stomach, or “saddlebag” thighs. And other social media users were just as taken aback, with one person commenting: “They ruined my youth, man,” and another adding: “I actually remember watching them on TV at such a young age and this video just reminded me of the root of my body dysmorphia.” Someone else shockingly explained that they had that very book in school. POPSUGAR reached out to reps for Trinny and Susannah, but did not immediately receive a response.

Unsurprisingly, there are a plethora of other early aughts moments which contributed to toxic diet culture that have since resurfaced online. For example, on an episode of “Supersize Vs Superskinny” Doctor Christian Jessen talks about contestants “piling on the pounds”. On “America’s Next Top Model”, Tyra Banks says that one hopeful model’s body is “sending a negative message to women” by just existing, while contestant Robin Manning was branded as “too fat” to be a model on the same show.

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