Unrealistic and dangerous beauty ideals thrust upon women are a one-way street to low self-esteem and food-shaming, and one singer/songwriter has had enough. Demi Lovato's tweets about food shaming are empowering AF, and send a clear message that while the struggle is real, food-shaming yourself or others is not OK. Lovato has been vocal about overcoming her eating disorder, and when she admitted to feeling "gross" during a recent photo shoot, she didn't hold back. Because, as Lovato knows all too well, internalizing negative body-image ideals can make you sick.
On Jan. 19 Lovato tweeted, "Feeling gross today at a photo shoot but I’m choosing to accept what I see because I love myself for who I am and your love and support gets me through moments like this. If you’re struggling as well, don’t forget.. if I can do it, you can too!"
Trying to conform to an unrealistic body image can have a negative impact on both physical and mental health. And, like a boss, Lovato unapologetically claimed that she's done with living up to other people's expectations of how she should look. #SorryNotSorry.
"No longer depriving myself of treats (in moderation) and I’m not gonna lie, I put on a couple lbs since I’ve given up dieting,” Lovato said on Twitter. “BUT I’ve given up the chronic stress of what I eat because I don’t want to set that example for my fans. No more food shaming myself!!"
Lovato isn't the first singer/songwriter to speak out about body-image struggles. In 2012, Lady Gaga spoke out about fighting to overcome her eating disorder, and she clapped back on Instagram after some people commented on her body during her Super Bowl performance.
"I heard my body is a topic of conversation so I wanted to say, I'm proud of my body and you should be proud of yours too," Gaga wrote on Instagram. "No matter who you are or what you do. I could give you a million reasons why you don't need to cater to anyone or anything to succeed. Be you, and be relentlessly you."
With more and more people speaking out about body-shaming and doing the best you can by yourself by putting your needs first, a new food trend called asynchronous eating has emerged in 2018. This type of eating is all about doing what is best for you and your body, which means no more food-shaming. "[Asynchronous eating is about] getting sustenance when it’s needed at key times of the day," Merlin Ward, director of cultural systems at sparks & honey, told Bustle in January. "This doesn’t mean their opting for meal replacements either. Everything can become a meal, and indulgence still has its place in asynchronous meals, too."
Asynchronous eating is basically the anti-diet, and encourages you to see yourself as an individual with your own specific set of needs. Evidenced by the thousands of comments of support Lovato received on Twitter, this empowering message is exactly what we need to hear right now.
Because, this is all of us, and no one should be shamed for doing what is best for their body, mind, and spirit.
Sometimes stars are just like us. And, Lovato's empowering tweets prove that everyone struggles to overcome the same insecurities.
The message being that listening to your head and heart will never steer your wrong.
This is me all day. In 2017 I tried a vegan diet because I thought it was healthier. While some people feel great eating an all plant-based diet, it actually made me really sick. What works for one person doesn't work for another, and someone foisting their idea of "healthy" on someone else is part of food-shaming.
And, we can all use more kindness in our lives, which in turn helps us feel more confident.
Lovato's brave tweets have let others who are struggling with food shaming themselves know that they are not alone. And, while we all feel bad about ourselves sometimes, owning it and flipping the script to empower instead of shame is an important step in dismantling a patriarchal society that reinforces unrealistic expectations. While it might make you feel weird, another step in the fight against food shaming includes taking time to think of one thing you love about yourself every day.
Just like Lovato sings in "Sorry Not Sorry," living well is the best revenge. "Feelin' inspired 'cause the tables have turned / Yeah, I'm on fire and I know that it burns." Because, the only opinion that matters is your own. And, as Gaga sings in "Born This Way" ... "Don't hide yourself in regret / Just love yourself and you're set." Much love to these ladies for continually reminding us that we are enough just the way we are.