Calling all the mothers of daughters. As a team of female Nutritionists with familiar memories of what it was like to be a teenager, this month we want to raise your awareness of an incredible campaign being hosted by Diet and Lifestyle Mentor, Edwina Murphy-Droomer, ‘A League of Extraordinary Mothers’.
I’m not a mother, so I’m certainly not going to profess to know what it’s like to withstand the ebbs and flows of a teenage girls’ psyche, but I was once a teenage daughter myself and can reflect from that perspective. My relationship with food developed from an early age and to be honest, it didn’t start out positively. Like many women in the 80’s and 90’s my mother was under the influence of a diet industry spruiking the importance of calories in, calories out (please see ‘The Calorie Fallacy‘). Without it being her intention, her persistent use of low fat products, the delivery of Lite n’ Easy meals and discussion of Weight Watchers groups/points influenced my perception of what ‘healthy food’ and ‘looking healthy’ was. I was young, impressionable and through no malice intent, my mother’s actions strongly influenced my relationship with food.
This isn’t necessarily reflective of the experience for all teenagers, but fast forward the clock a few years and it’s even more challenging for young women. We live in a world where the influencers go beyond just family and friends, with social media sending daily messages, many of which can create a viscous cycle around food and body image. Did you know the average teen is spending 3.3 hours a day on social media and that in a recent report published by the Australian Psychological Society it was found 66% of teen users feel the pressure to look good in photos on social media? With 38% of those adding filters just to appear more attractive!
No wonder we’re noticing an escalation in body image issues, eating disorders, binge drinking and depression.
In clinic we’re frequently approached by women wanting to help their teenage daughters in making the right food choices. I love this because it means we can start positive conversation and education around food, early. However, it’s just one part of the equation, which is why we’re thrilled to be teaming up with Edwina Murphy-Droomer. In her 21 day masterclass series she has gathered over 20 experts (including our very own, Steph Lowe) to discuss all elements of what it takes to lay strong foundations of health and happiness for teenage girls.
Here’s what Edwina covers in A League of Extraordinary Mothers:
- Dealing with anxiety/depression.
- Stress management techniques.
- The power of food – for physical and mental health.
- Being savvy in the digital world.
- Personal care products – the good and the bad.
- Personal care rituals that can set your daughter up for life.
- Supporting happy hormones.
- The key to happiness.
The virtual masterclass series starts April 23rd and we have a complimentary ticket for you to attend. Register here.
My hope is that every teenage girl grows up knowing that real food is fuel for a healthy body and mind. I’m sure as mothers and followers of TNN your hopes would be the same. If you have a teenage girl, please support their health journey and check out A League of Extraordinary Mothers.
Australian Psychological Society, 2017. Digital Me – A Survey Exploring the Effect of Social Media and Digital Technology on Australians’ Wellbeing. Accessed April 4, 2018.