I remember this being proposed in summer last year and being alarmed at the idea as someone with a history of an eating disorder, specifically anorexia.
Eating disorders are not a phase and an individual can relapse at any given moment whether they consider themselves to be 'fully recovered' or not.
Today large chain restaurants with over 250 employees are now required, by law, to print calorie information on menus.
This is said to tackle to obesity crisis, apparently...
As someone with a history of anorexia, I know how much of a devestating affect this is going to have on those with eating disorders. People with an eating disorder find eating out challenging enough, without having the number of calories in each meal offensively printed in their face.
Not only that, I believe that it will actually increase the rise of eating disorders within the UK as more people will begin to focus and fixate on calories, rather than nutrition.
Eating disorders, especially anorexia has the highest mortality rate of any mental health illness. Since the pandemic began, there’s been a huge rise in eating disorders with people receiving less and less help and with much longer waiting lists to receive treatment, which results to more deaths.
The problem isn’t the calories themselves, it’s whether people are actually able to read and understand what they actually mean, properly.
Many people perceive something that is high calorie = bad, when this isn’t necessarily the case. What people need is education around nutrition, something that isn’t offered or taught in schools other than the basic eating your 5 fruit and vege a day.
Some salads out there can contain more calories than a burger, but one is more nutritious than the other, this can actually work both ways believe it or not.
Calories = energy and that information alone does not give the full perspective of the overall nutrition of a meal.
Most people know what is perceived as being healthy without knowing the number of calories in a meal, so will this really make much difference to the nations obesity crisis?
There was an article published by the BBC today which I thought highlighted other views on why this is a bad idea, you can read that HERE
Of course there are pros and cons to everything, but I do believe that the cons hugely outweigh the pros (no pun intended)
If you suffer with an eating disorder or knows someone that does and feel you or they may be affected by this then do check out the BEAT website for help and resources.
You can also check out the following guide for help, support and advice on eating out with calorie labelling using the link HERE
Furthermore if you would like any help or support from myself please feel free to reach out to me either by email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Via instagram: @laurasylv
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