Is social media promoting unhealthy eating habits?

Top Stories

Is social media promoting unhealthy eating habits?
Diana Zavzeatii is a health blogger

UAE influencers voice their opinions


Janice Rodrigues

  • Follow us on
  • google-news
  • whatsapp
  • telegram

Published: Thu 15 Feb 2018, 11:00 PM

Last updated: Tue 27 Feb 2018, 12:40 PM

Social media is a very powerful tool that anyone can use. And, as with all tools, it all depends on the person who is using it. For many, social media can be a major source of education and inspiration, but it can also become a negative influence. In my view, everyone should be held responsible for the content they post on social media and ask themselves, 'What I am posting? Is it useful? Am I making a positive impact on someone today or am I spreading negativity?' These are the things I always ask myself when I post on my social media channels. As the old saying says: If you have nothing nice to say, then don't say anything at all. 
As a promoter of proper nutrition, my mission is to spread knowledge on the importance of healthy food and lifestyle. For me, social media is an excellent tool to educate and share useful information in my own unique way. The feedback that I receive is very encouraging. This makes me believe that my efforts are fruitful and that more people are paying attention to their health, via food and lifestyle. I am not the only one in this pool of social media influencers. There are so many like-minded people who promote the same values and who produce inspiring content. Many of them are here in the Middle East and they are making eating healthy a trend, which is also helpful. 
At the same time, social media is full of posts that promote unhealthy eating habits. There are two categories of accounts that produce them: brands and consumers. If we talk about low-quality food brands, their only aim is profit. It is already up to them how ethical they want to be. As for the people who consume unhealthy products, I think they just need to be educated to understand the risks of consuming certain ingredients and products. 
When I started blogging, I took it as a task to create content that delivers the message of healthy nutrition and surrounded myself with like-minded people. If more people would adapt this tactic, I am confident there would be no room for content promoting unhealthy habits.
- Diana Zavzeatii
Blogs at You can follow her for healthy food inspiration on Instagram and Facebook @busyavocado 

There will always be someone somewhere promoting things that are bad for you. Back in the day, I started every morning by watching fun-loving mascots on TV, tempting and pressurising me into eating sugary cereals loaded with artificial colours. The world has since changed - but now it's social media influencing us to consume things that nature never intended for us to eat.
Everyone's in control of their own social feeds, but no matter how hard you try, it's difficult to avoid catching a glimpse of all the indulgently unhealthy food fads making the rounds.With chefs now working with marketers to develop recipes that look drool-worthy on social media and with punters like me lapping it up, everyone's in pursuit of the most Instagrammable content to propel their likes, comments, popularity, revenues or waistlines.
I can't remember the last time I gushed over a salad, but a foot-tall freakshake encrusted with candies and a week's worth of desserts piled on top? A psychedelic rainbow bagel erupting with cream cheese and exploding with Funfetti'? A glistening, three-patty burger overflowing with mac and cheese? The oozier, the drippier, the squishier, the better.
Do I care that it might be a week's worth of calories that I'll be wolfing down in one sitting? Not really. Will I still seek it out to eat it (and photograph and post it)? Definitely.
That's not to say that social media doesn't also provide healthy food inspiration - from vegan to paleo to gluten-free and everything in between. But for me, the allure of a gluttonous creation, specifically engineered to arouse my senses as well as my appetite, is just too hard to ignore.
Perhaps it's because I grew up in the sugary-cereal generation, or because I simply love food, or maybe I'm just a sucker for a good marketing gimmick. But give me an explosion of molten chocolate over a triple matcha waffle ice cream sandwich with a charcoal fairy floss halo and one big spoon, and you'll make me a very happy woman.
- Jen Sahi 
is the blogger behind You can follow her for foodie updates on Instagram, Zomato and Twitter @dxbfooddiaries

More news from