Toxic Diet Culture?

Today I saw a post referring to calorie counting / losing weight (dieting) as toxic.


In 2022 can we please stop referring to anything we don’t personally like as toxic? Because whilst calorie counting may not be right for everyone that doesn’t mean it’s toxic. same with weight loss.

Now, quick caveat, there are people for whom calorie counting isn’t a good idea, it can indeed for some become obsessive and be damaging. For those people yes calorie counting is not to be encouraged.

But for many calorie counting is the most simple straight forward, cost effective and practical way of creating a calorie deficit – which if you want to lose weight – is what you need to achieve.

So let’s reframe the notion that calorie counting is toxic. Calorie counting is simply a method of tracking energy intake which for some people will work well but whom for some may not be beneficial.

Swimming is a very good way to exercise. Except not for me, because I can’t swim. Does that mean swimming is toxic and a bad way to train, because it doesn’t suit me? Pretty sure everyone reading said no in their head just then.

Very few things in life are in themselves toxic, our relationship with something may well be toxic, that doesn’t mean it is also toxic for everyone else.

Diets get a bad rap, because traditionally they’ve been seen as restrictive and not sustainable. That’s really not the case these days. Most coaches will encourage sensible calorie deficits and won’t suggest you cut out food groups or stop eating your favourite foods.

Diets are just using a bit more energy than you consume each day to create a physical change in your body. Unless you’re doing that to please someone other than you it is not toxic.

Certain things might be a bit triggering to us personally, that doesn’t mean they’re automatically toxic, I think it’s a bit unhelpful to ourselves not to recognise that, as it puts all the responsibility for our reactions onto society, when in reality we can’t control what other people say or do so we have to instead look to control how we chose to react to it.


Blog 5 of my mini series…


At the end of February (feels like a life time ago now) I traveled to Belfast to attend the Only Just media Summit.  This was just as Corona Virus was starting to become a ‘thing’, before Social Distancing had become a ‘thing’ and the week that Northern Ireland had just had their first case.

The event was a full day of speakers, all experts in their fields, talking to a room full of bloggers, Vloggers, content creators and brands.  My plan immediately after the event was to write some blogs on the speakers and my key takeouts.  Life then got in the way, CoronaVirus exploded and took up all my time at work and this idea got left in the notes section of my phone.  Until now.

Today is the blog five of ten where I want to outline my key take outs for the day.

Why?  To be honest it’s probably multipurpose (like that kind of cleaning product you but to clean the kitchen and bathroom if like me you are not a ‘Mrs. Hincher’.  Partly I think it will help me solidify the key points I took away from the day, because although I’ve not written about them here until now I have started to take action.  But also because I think you as the reader could also benefit from these takeouts.  You might not be interested in branding or social media or content creation but some of the ideas I took away could just be useful for your approach to your job or you life in general.

So introductions over today’s blog will focus on the talk given by Gabriel Desanti, a content creator and influencer from New York.


Gabriel talked very honestly about his own experiences and Fulfillment versus Cost.

He spoke about how the concept of a toxic environment is very real and can have a negative effect on your whole well being.  Your environment can both assist in making you feel happy and also unhappy.  Now, perhaps surprisingly for a social media influencer, he stressed that isn’t to say corporate environments are always going to make you unhappy and working for yourself is the goal for everyone, rather its finding the environment and balance that works for you.

Initially this sounds like a weird topic to bring into a blog series about personal branding / social media branding.  However if you recall my recent blogs have all focused on the goal that whether you are branding yourself or a business you need to be authentic and that is going to be very unique to you.  If you find yourself funneling yourself into a particular environment because you think it’s the right one for where you ‘should’ be, and it makes you miserable then that will not benefit you’re professional progression.

Your happy place may not seem ‘right’ to other people, but that is ok if it suits you.  A lot of people do not understand why my current working situation works for me, perhaps some people think I could earn more than I do.  But I know that what I do suits my purpose, makes me happy and I enjoy the balance I have and the mix of ‘corporate’ and self employed.  Removing toxicity isn’t always about removing people which is what we tend to automatically think about when we hear the word toxic, your environment is also important, potentially more so, not just the walls which you are within but the model you work within, so you need to find a way of working which works for you.