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On Your Table Blog

October 15, 2021

I saw it on TikTok

I saw it on TikTok

by Elizabeth Magee, RD, LRD

“Mom – Lizard – Liz – Lizzy – look at this video I saw on TikTok…”

Recently, the kids at my house have been flooding me with questions and comments about diet hacks they see on TikTok and it has me majorly concerned. First, if you aren’t showing me a recipe or funny cat/kid/dog/horse video I probably don’t care. I’m concerned not only for the impressionable females in my life I’m trying to raise but for so many of the impressionable minds looking at TikTok all day long.

Following these influencers, or people attempting to become influencers. Trying some of these ridiculous things they’ve seen. Thinking these things are normal, or that they should do these things or look a certain way. It makes me worry about body image, eating disorders, and things I can’t even pinpoint right now. But I’m generally concerned when I open TikTok and know our kids see these things and maybe don’t understand this isn’t reality.

Don’t get me wrong, this isn’t all they are doing on the app… the dances crack me up and they do bring cute little videos or funny ones to my attention. But I’m stuck on the diet, weight loss, what I eat in a day “posts.” Are they called posts? Whatever. I’m calling them that.

One day, my daughter asked me if we could order chlorophyll and if that would be healthy to take. For what? The plants in the house I’m trying so hard to keep alive? I’m sure the look on my face said most of what I needed to say. I don’t even understand why this would be a trend. Furthermore, I would encourage everyone to eat more veggies if you’re having nutrition concerns. Where does one even purchase chlorophyll? And why are we taking it? I didn’t even really let her get to that.

“What I eat in a day”

I don’t even know what to say about this trend. It is either people posting on what seems to be severe calorie restriction or basically binge eating. Neither are good. And why are we concerned about what someone else is eating in a day? I don’t get it. From these posts, I stumbled upon a “recipe” for “watermelon” involving cucumber and sugar/artificial sweeteners. Why aren’t we just eating watermelon? What’s the concern with that? It’s fruit and it’s delish. So, if there’s no food allergy involved, I’m not sure why we’re trying to recreate watermelon.

I’m sure I’m missing a bunch of messed up things on TikTok. These are just the ones I’ve noticed and have me worrying. The takeaway here, if you saw it on TikTok, that doesn’t give it credence or make it a “diet” worth trying.  More importantly, look at what your kids are looking at on this app. There’s certainly a lot to take in.

Elizabeth Magee is a registered licensed dietitian and loves chips and salsa! Elizabeth Magee is a licensed registered dietitian. Her posts appear monthly on OYT.

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