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Shed Pounds For Prom When You Ditch the Booze?

If the article entitled "How to Lose Up to 10 Pounds Before Prom" doesn't already have you thinking WTF, it gets better (or worse). Just to be clear, the article appears in the health section of the Chicago Tribune, not in the pages of Seventeen as you might have expected.

A couple of things have me scratching my head. The first being that it frames encouraging young girls to shed pounds fast before they head to prom in just a couple short months as a healthy suggestion. Along with tips to scale down caloric intake like "look for little diet trims . . . Eat one slice of bread on a sandwich instead of two, order a child-sized scoop of ice cream rather than a small, use less oil when you cook and switch to lower-fat cheeses," the article also gives this warning: "Beware high-calorie drinks." It continues, "Many dieters sabotage their efforts with coffee drinks, alcoholic beverages and smoothies full of fat, calories and sugar." Right. Practical tips for teens trying to lose pounds now include laying off the booze.

All jokes aside, I'm thinking teenage girls have enough in the way of body image issues, and encouraging them to eat sandwiches with only one slice of bread seems to me a slippery slope.

Image Source: Getty
Join The Conversation
postmodernsleaze postmodernsleaze 7 years
I agree 100% with runningesq. The actual healthy eating habits in the article might be sound advice for anyone of any age, but that fact that they are gearing it toward teenage girls before their prom is irksome to me. If the title of the article was "Healthy Nutrition for Teens" or something, I wouldn't have an issue.
danakscully64 danakscully64 7 years
nevaeh - When I was in high school, I would say that about 95% of the students drank. They got it from older friends, siblings, and even parents. Some had fake IDs. Very very common. I never drank though, the most I had was 2 tastes of alcohol at my cousins wedding when I was 17. I remember drinking a ton of blended drinks in HS (smoothies and coffee), plus eating a lot of deep fried foods. I'm so glad I know better now. I wouldn't say I was overweight in high school, my BMI was fine (21), but I wasn't healthy. I wish kids would understand how long term the effects of their diet can be. The effects of ALL of their bad habits (tanning, drunk driving, sleeping around, etc).
kurniakasih kurniakasih 7 years
Highschoolers these days indulge in booze? I guess I'm way behind the time, since I thought that the legal age is 21. I still get asked for ID! I'm past 30. Aside from that, there's nothing wrong with the advice to cut down calories, get exercise, etc (I'm all for healthy lifestyle and moderation is key) although I'd nitpick at the title (basically you need to 'diet' for a certain event--so what's going to happen after that? Splurge all year long? :)) Then again, maybe that's what will 'lure' people/highschoolers to read and take it seriously since it's 'prom' and all.
mix-tape mix-tape 7 years
Maybe I will stop drinking Coke so that I can keep drinking my beer. I'm not trying to fit into a prom dress any more, but I could lose 10-20 pounds gained during college.
jenni5 jenni5 7 years
Looking at teens these days the advice is pretty good. But how much booze is the average high schooler drinking anyways?
runningesq runningesq 7 years
Autumns - the problem with the article, IMO, is that it encourages (1) dieting, to (2) lose a specific amount of weight, (3) for a specific event for (4) girls. The advice itself may be fine, but teenage girls should not be encouraged to "LOSE [X] POUNDS BEFORE [BIG EVENT]." Encouraging healthy eating and exercise is fine - headlines like "LOSE 10 POUNDS BEFORE PROM" are not.
Autumns_Elegy Autumns_Elegy 7 years
I don't see an issue with this. A lot of the advice in that article I have seen on Fitsugar. It is good quality advice and doesn't promote an unhealthy outlook. As long as you eat well and work out, you feel great and when you feel great you look even better, regardless of the number on your scale.
snarkypants snarkypants 7 years
hahaha pistil, i wouldn't put it past them!
Pistil Pistil 7 years
Next week they can change the headline to: "How to lose 10 pounds before your wedding".
snarkypants snarkypants 7 years
my guess is the trib (which has not been known for its journalistic excellence) found weight-loss tips online, put prom in the headline, and voila! story!
xxstardust xxstardust 7 years
I guess you don't know many teenagers, Tres ... my brother's a senior in high school and I'm only a few years out of it myself. You're hard pressed to find a teenager who doesn't drink on occasion.
GirlMeetWorld GirlMeetWorld 7 years
@runningesq I'm currently a senior in college. I'm one of 4 children, and my mother has our prom pictures in small frames around our living room at home, and I keep a photo album filled with pictures so I guess I just see them a lot. I suppose prom was just a really fun time for me (especially my senior prom) and I do love looking back at them. Prom was probably one of my favorite moments from my last year in high school. I probably shouldn't have generalized so much, but I know that in my freshman year of college a lot of girls living on my hall would show each other our prom pictures, talk about our dresses or dates or about our group of friends. *shrug* I guess that might just be my experience, though!
lilkimbo lilkimbo 7 years
Eh, I don't have a huge problem with the article. The tips seem practical and I don't think it encourages girls to lose weight at too fast a rate. Ten pounds in two months is perfectly acceptable weight loss. And, while I don't see a lot of obese teenagers, like some people seem to, I do see a lot of teenagers who could afford to lose maybe ten or fifteen pounds.
runningesq runningesq 7 years
And I think an article titled "How to Lose 10 Pounds Before Prom" is totally irresponsible. Why before prom? Why 10 pounds? This clearly isn't about "health."
runningesq runningesq 7 years
Um, GirlMeetWorld, how long have you been out of high school? Prom is a time when girls are trying to look their best....these are the pictures they'll be looking at for years to come! ... I don't remember the last time I looked at my prom pictures. Hell, I don't know where they are.
chloe-bella chloe-bella 7 years
Fifty years ago, I would agree with Tres. But the sad truth is that a good deal of teenagers are now obese due, in part, to the mentality that kids should be allowed to eat whatever they want and that no one should tell them being overweight is unhealthy because it "might" trigger an eating disorder. The article lists good tips that anyone can benefit from. My mom recently told me that 50% of the students at her school are medically obese. Case in point: My mom used to donate my used clothing to needy high school girls in her school district; now, she gives them to 4th and 5th graders, and even some of them are too big to fit into the clothing I wear at age 26. It's really sad.
marcied23 marcied23 7 years
yeah, the article should have been just general advice, not specifically to teen girls, "use less oil, eat low fat cheese, add a healthy protein to every meal and get a kid's size ice cream", honestly how many teen girls really cook their own food? they should have added advice about cutting back on fast food (wendy's value menu was a staple during my h.s. years). but anyway, i agree with imlissy, i don't know to many overweight high schooler's (my little sister is a junior).
zzleigh zzleigh 7 years
I agree that the whole "use less oil, eat low fat cheese, add a healthy protein to every meal and get a kid's size ice cream" is great advice for anyone, especially in this country.
Pistil Pistil 7 years
It's good advice for anyone, it doesn't seem necessary to direct it to teen girls.
Bettye-Wayne Bettye-Wayne 7 years
All controversy aside, cutting back on booze is a great diet.
GirlMeetWorld GirlMeetWorld 7 years
I'm going to have to side with the article on this one...I think this advice is actually pretty spot on! Prom is a time when girls are trying to look their best....these are the pictures they'll be looking at for years to come! Certainly, that little stick in the image doesn't have to go and shed 20 pounds, but a lot of girls in high school are trying to cut a few back before prom/beach season hits. Cutting down on high calorie drinks? Yeah, that is a good idea! A lot of high school girls don't bother to think about how much fat/sugar/calories are in the Starbucks or whatever they drink, and it's going to help them out in the long run to be wise with their food decisions. One of the most important lessons I ever learned was that food serves one, and only one, purpose. To nourish your body, provide carbs and calories for energy and give you healthy vitamins and minerals. It's not a crutch after a big breakup, or a way to celebrate achievements or comfort failures. Girls should be realistic with their weight loss goals, considering that only 2% of the population has the body type we see plastered over magazines and commercials. Learning how to find a prom dress that suits your body type to help you look your most that would be a great article!
weffie weffie 7 years
I don't think the article is necessarily harmful to young girls, the first thing it says is "Don't starve yourself," which is usually the main point that young girls miss when dieting. It also tells them to get lots of sleep and not to obsess over numbers on the scale... basically decent advice. I drank a lot in high school (and so did everyone I knew) so I don't think it's unreasonable to point out that boozy drinks can have just as many calories as soda or Starbucks.
imLissy imLissy 7 years
While I needed to lose about 20 pounds when I was in HS, I think the majority of teenage girls DO NOT need to lose weight. I got a prom magazine in the mail a couple weeks ago (wtf?) and it also had an article on how to lose weight before prom. Aren't they under enough pressure?
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