Lizzo sparked a backlash for promoting “fad nutrition” after taking part in a 10 day juice cleanse.
Fans expressed disappointment that the singer, who is an outspoken advocate for the body positivity movement, was participating in “diet culture”.
Following a disclaimer that her methods shouldn’t be tried without “research”, Lizzo posted videos of herself drinking “beauty water” and taking “detox supplements” on TikTok and Instagram. She tagged JJ Smith, who sells juice cleanses and diet pills, in the videos.
One fan commented:
“Seeing you promote diet culture is breaking my heart.”
“Fad nutrition. Gutted.”
“How absolutely irresponsible of you to put this on the feed for your fans. Where is your PR team?”
“Detoxes don’t work and they definitely do not promote body positivity.”
Lizzo initially explained her reasons for doing the cleanse by saying:
“So I drank a lot and ate a lot of food that f*cked my stomach up in Mexico so I decided to do JJ Smith’s 10 day smoothie cleanse.”
Alongside videos of herself in sportswear each day, Lizzo offered commentary including:
“I was like, ugh, [the detox] started to get to me mentally. [...] I was just wanting to stress eat and do things that were kind of self-harming.
I feel amazing and it’s just good to, like, reset your stomach.”
The concept of detoxing is built on “unscientific” claims about the presence of “toxins” in the body that aren’t really there.
Lizzo addressed the backlash she sparked in a third video.
“I would normally be so afraid and ashamed to post things like this online because I feel like as a big girl, people expect if you are doing something for health, you’re doing it for a dramatic weight loss, and that is not the case.
I’m a big girl who did a smoothie detox and I wanted to share that with you guys. I got exactly what I wanted out of it and every big girl should do whatever the f*ck they want with their bodies.”
She added that it helped with her sleep, skin, hydration, inner peace and mental stability.
Some fans defended Lizzo after she posted the video, arguing that she can’t escape scrutiny no matter what she does with her body.
But others maintained that she shouldn’t promote fad diets to her millions of fans.
Lizzo’s weight and her relationship with her body are undoubtedly unnecessarily scrutinised and policed.
But it’s possible to support her body positivity without endorsing all of her choices, including juice trends that might be harmful to fans