What is an Almond Mum?
Grab your almonds, mums of Australia, because a TikTok trend has crossed the Pacific and is sparking conversations about diet culture right here at home.
What On Earth Is An Almond Mum And Why Is It Trending?
Dubbed the "Almond Mum" trend, it began with a wave of viral TikTok videos highlighting and sometimes satirising the behaviours of mums obsessed with diet and body image.
This trend traces its roots back to a 10-year-old clip from "The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills" where a young Gigi Hadid tells her mum, Yolanda, she's feeling weak after eating an almond. This 'almond advice' sparked a trend, with the "Almond Mum" hashtag now boasting over 300 million views on TikTok.
What defines an Almond Mum?
Think healthy eating obsession, fitness fascination, and a constant scrutiny of body image - both their own and their daughters'. Though this description may sound harsh, many see it as an important critique of diet culture's impact on women and girls.
This trend, however, is not about 'almond-shaming'. Rather, it opens up a much-needed dialogue about the societal pressures faced by women and girls to maintain a particular body image. The Almond Mum trend is one example of how online platforms can be used to shed light on important societal issues and spark change.
Maya Feller, a registered dietician and nutritionist, sees the Almond Mum trend as a clear indicator of how diet culture, with its focus on restriction and shame, affects families.
One of the poignant aspects of the Almond Mum trend is the focus on mother-daughter relationships and how behaviours around diet and body image can be passed down. The undercurrent of this viral trend is the harmful potential of diet culture and its influence on younger generations.
Navigating Conversations About Diet Culture With Your Kids
Given the pervasiveness of diet culture, it's crucial to have open conversations with our children about its potential harm. Reinforcing positive body image, promoting diverse beauty standards, and fostering a healthy relationship with food can help counteract the influence of diet culture.
Begin by discussing the variety of healthy body types and the importance of nourishing the body with balanced meals. Encourage physical activity for enjoyment and health, rather than as a means of controlling body shape or size.
If you're unsure how to start these conversations, consider seeking guidance from a registered dietician, psychologist, or school counsellor. They can provide you with strategies and resources to discuss diet culture and body image in age-appropriate and sensitive ways.
Additionally, organisations like the Butterfly Foundation offer valuable resources on body image and eating disorders, including support services, helplines, and educational workshops for parents and children.
Tyler Bender, the TikTok creator who catapulted the Almond Mum trend into the spotlight, uses her platform to critique these behaviours. Her videos have led to introspective conversations about food and body image, helping many women examine their relationships with diet culture.
Bender's goal? To see more women feeling good about themselves, repairing their relationships with food, and dismantling the harmful narratives of diet culture.
Whether you're an 'Almond Mum', an 'Almond Mom', or neither, join the conversation and see where this viral trend takes us next.
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