In the past, when I have spoken about Slimming World, I’ve been met with two opinions. Some people love it, swear by it and count their success on it. Then you have the people that feel it is toxic, unhealthy and should be actively discouraged. But is Slimming World toxic?
Slimming World Success
As you’ll know, if you are a regular reader here, I am in no way a dietician, health expert or medical professional. When I write about weight loss and ‘diets’, it is only ever from my personal perspective. That being said, I have found great success in the Slimming World plan. I find it easy to adapt to my family lifestyle, and it means there is no need to make separate meals because the food is suitable for everyone.
I have to be honest following a plan that requires little weighing and measuring is a blessing, and I find the overall strategy easy and straightforward to follow. There are, of course, things I dislike about the plan, but there are many more things that I love, so for me, it works, and it causes me little stress, so I’m happy.
Not For Everyone
Listen, Slimming World is not for everyone – as is life. There will never be a one size fits all, but that’s ok because there are so many other plans out there. If you have tried Slimming World and not got along with it, you certainly are not alone. I’ve spoken to many people that have just found the plan challenging to grasp or not for them.
Is Slimming World Toxic Though?
There are claims from some people that Slimming World is toxic. Some people suggest that it promotes unhealthy habits and doesn’t encourage good mindful practice. I can appreciate these comments to an extent. For example, you can eat as much pasta and potatoes on the Slimming World plan as you want. Still, these foods can be high in calories and increase the calorific content of a portion of food quite significantly without even realising it. People who struggle with portion control could eat a whole bag of pasta and still technically be on plan, yet that isn’t a healthy portion at all.
Another contentious subject is ‘syns.’ Everybody gets an allowance of ‘syns’ they can use each day, and I believe it’s usually between 5-15. On the surface, this is a good way to moderate snacks and sweet treats without the feeling of depravity that sometimes comes with a diet plan. That being said, if you have already eaten a substantial amount throughout the day, you could already be over your calorie allowance, but you could still eat the equivalent of 15 syns and be ‘on plan.’
I’ve written about my loathing for the Slimming World groups before, but if I’m candid when it comes to discussing if Slimming World is toxic or not, the groups really hold a lot of toxicity for me. I know there will be people who disagree, and I admit that if you find a good group with a good consultant, then groups can be great, but if you don’t, which is more often than not, it’s not always good. Slimming World groups seem to make everything like a competition. Your weight journey is not a competition, and it should not feel like it is. There were times I was genuinely scared to step on the scales! That screams toxic environment to me! I also found that most of the consultants I have spoken with have been unhelpful and not particularly knowledgeable about the plan. When you pay to go to group, you are paying for that support, but it often falls short in my experience.
Do I Think Slimming World Is Toxic?
I don’t. I think the plan itself is ideal for me personally, and when used with a level of common sense, it works. I know I can’t eat a huge bowl of pasta and 20 meatballs even if it keeps me on plan, so I use this knowledge combined with the overall structure and that works for me.
Are there toxic elements to Slimming World? Absolutely. I think the real trouble lies in the fact that it’s likely not a plan that works or fits in with everyone. Similar to alcohol – it can be enjoyed by many, but it’s not suitable for everyone. I think the main take away is that no eating plan or diet should be making you form unhealthy habits or mindset around food, and if you find that Slimming World is doing just that for you, then it’s probably not for you.
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