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TikTok Nutrition: What to avoid

GymPlus Team

July 1, 2022

TikTok Nutrition: What to avoid

TikTok Nutrition is one of the new fads that have taken off in the social media world. There is so much content out there that it is difficult to know what to believe. We’ve looked into it and put together this post to help you navigate the strange world of TikTok Nutrition. 

Nutrition and social media

If you’re on TikTok, you probably engage in a bit of entertaining aimless browsing every so often. You get pulled from one video to the next, all loosely connected to one topic or another. This may be helpful when looking for inspiration on, e.g. wedding flowers, an interior design issue in your home, or fun birthday surprise ideas. You find a world of inspiring and clever ideas. 

But, when starting to look for genuine health advice on social media, the pickings can be slim. You may start out watching a video containing credible, no-nonsense information. But the random algorithm of the App may show you a video containing not too trustworthy information next. How do you judge what’s good information? How do you know who’s good? 

Social Media platforms are incredibly good at making their content appear to be worth following. Their concept is to keep you watching and believing in their product. While there is good advice out there on TikTok, it can be hard to find. Just remember, you’re not on a nutrition platform, you’re on social media. These videos aren’t vetted by qualified professionals before they get uploaded. Only the most popular ones will appear on your feed. 

TikTok Nutrition Tips

Here are some useful tips to help you make a judgment on TikTok or other Apps: 

  • Always ask, what is the person trying to sell? Are they selling their services (e.g. online fitness classes, a weight loss course, etc) or a product (e.g. weight loss tablets, gym equipment, etc)? 
  • Next, try to do a brief background check on the person behind the video. If you’re listening to nutrition advice, I strongly recommend you check out any qualifications. Do they have a University or College degree, does their professional qualification indicate they are educated on nutrition? 
  • Do the promises made in the video sound too good to be true? Fact is, then they’re probably too good to be true. I am talking about the promise of “lose 5lbs fat a week with this programme” (when in fact a 1lbs weight loss is sustainable and healthy). 
  • Does the video advertise a complicated approach that is arguably quite far removed from ordinary people’s dietary habits? You will hear a lot of  “Work on your daily calorie deficit by looking at it over the course of the week, so if you want to aim for 1800kcal per day, then multiply that by 7 for the 7 days of the week, and you arrive at 12,600kcal for the week. So, if you then have a day where you don’t hit your 1800kcal, you can relax because you look at it over the course of the week ….” While having an eye on calories can be helpful, counting them like this is unhelpful, unrealistic and damaging to your weight loss goals.
  • The next question you need to ask yourself before continuing to watch: Do I want to follow this kind of diet? Does it fit into my lifestyle? Do I like it? All these questions are vital when making a decision on your diet for the long term. Many paths lead to Rome, there are so many different ways of eating well and living a healthy life. Whenever someone tries to tell you their way is the only way, you should ask more questions. 

This blog is the first in a series and in the coming weeks, there will be a few blogs looking more in-depth at nutrition advice found on TikTok and other Social Media platforms. Let’s look at good advice and bad, so we can learn how to eat well in life. Within these blogs, you will get simple, honest and science-based healthy eating tips that work for you long term.

Want to know more about nutrition and a healthy lifestyle? Get in touch with your local Gym Plus and we can help you!

GymPlus Team

July 1, 2022

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