Wellness Is A Sham Wrapped Up In Pretty Packaging- Here’s Why

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Photo by Brooke Lark on Unsplash

The first image that pops up on my Instagram grid when I type in the hashtag wellness is- unsurprisingly- a photo of someone holding a piece of banana avocado toast. Unsuspecting and seemingly innocent, this is what the definition of wellness once was.

If “the state of being in good health” sometimes meant eating avocado toast for breakfast or seeking a weekend away at a wellness spa, then it was what you did. A movement that originated in the US as far back as the ’70s sparked interest for those looking to further their health, and has grown steadily for the past few decades.

The problem is the dark side of the wellness movement that’s lurking just beyond the surface, found only if you scroll down far enough past the toast and cute yoga poses. It’s influencers and celebrities with airbrushed bodies smiling- with perfectly white teeth- at the latest wellness product promising weight lost and confidence gained if you just take this pill! Replace a meal with this powder and your anxiety will disappear! One week on this juice cleanse and I’ve lost ten pounds! These claims are popping up everywhere, and it’s become an epidemic.

More and more “wellness accounts” are gaining traction on social media, and most of the people running them have no professional qualifications. They feed on fear mongering and women’s (and all genders’) vulnerabilities to further push the new definition of wellness- diet culture wrapped up in pretty packaging.

Diet culture- a set of beliefs around the idea that thin bodies are healthier and more desirable- has been a focus in society for years. The constant advertising of diet pills and weight loss programs is just one of the many ways diet culture has become prevalent in recent years, and the popularity of social media has added in another route. We are constantly being mislead into thinking that the next “magic” product is going to help achieve our weight loss goals or cure a chronic illness- all in the name of wellness.

The thing is, we’re chasing something that’s virtually impossible to find. This version of wellness has been created as a sham, and all that we’ll get from it is wasted money and years spent trying to achieve impossible standards.

So do all the yoga and drink all the green tea you want, but don’t buy into the lie that we need to spend our days chasing the latest juice cleanse to be well.

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