80 Calorie Princesses… BARF~!!!!

Hello my Fatabulos Princecesses and Princes,

The last few weeks I have been culminating an ever growing list of things I wanted to share with you as my emancipation from size-ism is asserting itself in ever greater ways and with firmer resolutions that indeed this is the path that is the salvation of my fat soul.
I am going to Masters classes full time, I graduate this May AND working on my thesis proposal which includes research AND working more than full time… needless to say blogging take some time management finagling of a fine degree.
So while telling myself I just don’t have the time until semester ends in early December, something crossed my path that I just HAD to share with you. My incredulity about what I witnessed… led me gaping in the granola bar aisle…

So in the midst of shopping for the week and enjoying my new HAES lifestyle (buying peanut butter and more than 150 kcal cereal in YEARS… because I, you know in my logical dysfunction, thought that was somehow maintaining my weight… ha but I digress) I turned from my granola bar perusing to see a series of chocolate snack packs marketed for children.
When you look at the box here (snapped from my cell phone) you can see its three very skinny very white  under BMI Disney “Princesses” who have even greater disproportionate hip to waist ratios than Barbie by the way… standing approvingly under a HUGE ribbon-entexted ’80 CALORIES!’ In fact that 80 calories sign is greater than any other text on the damn box. Under it in much smaller text is Chocolate pieces snack packs.

Wow…where the FUCK do I start here??? When we hear studies which show that girls the  AGE OF FIVE are already worried about their weight. Where girls the age of 8 are in proto-dieting mode. Where girls are placed on diets by their very mothers…Where most women hate their bodies, are ashamed of their bodies and the first predictor for girls is to count calories and restrict foods… this box seems designed to not only  make eating disordered thinking OK but in fact enables it where it may have not existed previously;  it teaches girls it doesn’t matter what KINDS of foods are healthy but rather its all about the calorie count, the waist, the looks, the CONFORMITY pounded into young precious minds and hearts be it fat or thin. When I was young I loved the Little Mermaid, thin, beautiful Ariel vs. Fat, undulating BAD Ursula… back then at least it wasn’t fucking spelled out but the absolute DISGUSTING, LOATHSOME AND VILE marketing of Disney and Frankford Candy Co just to make a BUCK…The pressure to be thin will be greater than ever before. The pressure to hate and shame oneself will be greater than ever before. My friend who has little girls tells me Disney Princesses are more for the girls 2-6 years of age…. really? So…either… lets break down the levels of horrid dysfunctionalism, shall we?

Little girl equates dieting and calories with acceptance before they start school. OR if they cannot read the box then MOM is worried about their TODDLER and PRESCHOOLER gaining weight enough to start them on a calorie regimien. Really? Reallly?!?!?!!?!? I am flabbergasted.
Protect your girls. Protect them with all your might. The candy above is being produced and marketed by… a company outside of Philadelphia. I suggest you email them and tell them how horrible this candy is and let’s get it pulled from the shelves!!!!
Where is the social outrage? Would this marketing have been ok in our feminist late 60s hay day? Or 70s? 80s? No, only under the junk science hubris that weight is linked to death is linked to unhealthy is linked to epidemic which you and I know is (and I do not have hours to site all the scientific studies which completely and absolutely debunks these politically driven agenda) this kind of hysteria…. enjoys a diplomatically immune place which endeavours to damage very souls.
It’s just when my disgust and saddness level feel full to overbrimming, sweet serendipity blows my be calmed boat back on the course aright. I went to Grounds for Sculpture in New Jersey today. If you are within mild driving distance, really you MUST go to this wonderful play land full of sculptures and secret hammocks where you can shut the door and make out in a hillock of pines. Also there are curve loving works like this one. Which again brings me back to myself…sigh… yes this is the right.

Please email comments or call Frankford candy and let your outrage be known!

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  • Samantha

    OMG that is horrific!

    Thanks for bringing it to our attn!!!

    (Great blog too!!!)

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  • Susan

    Wow – that is so wrong on so many levels!

  • Seattlejo

    It’s not just about girls, they make the same candy in Sponge bob as well. It’s just following the 100 calorie snack pack trend, just for kids. Not saying it’s good, just saying it doesnt have the gender bias you claim.

  • Belovedideas

    I am also appalled on so many levels I’m getting a headache. Am no cooking some bloody red beef in lard (with wine and garlic) in protest. Side of buttery potatoes. No lie. %#%^f*ckingprincesses#@%# grumble grumble

  • Jenna

    You are right there is also spongebob “for boys” I guess? I wanted to specifically shine the light on the princesses because girl emulate these princesses and internalize them in a way they do not with spongbob.

  • Jenna

    and… my focus on girls does not mean the same isnt happening to boys… its just what I decided to focus on. And thats right the 100 calorie snack pack trend… marketed to 2-6 year olds. In God’s green earth why would that be a need?

  • erylin

    looking back i always wanted to be urula..she looked like me, all curvy and her songs rocked….and i thought little mermaid was always dumb to trade her voice away for a man anyway.

  • Melissa Wardy

    There is outrage, all right. My head just exploded. My business and the parents that support it is built on the idea that our girsl deserve better, and we’re tired of the crap being marketed to them. This is just but one example of the Princess Culture that has turned an entire generation of our daughters into weight and beauty obsessed, sexualized body-unconfident girls. It takes measurable effort to keep these messages and products out of my house, as I do not want my 4.5yo daughter brainwashed by these messages of thin ideal and white beauty.
    Thank you for taking this picture, sharing it with us, and giving voice to the problem of the very limited, narrow definition of girlhood today.
    I won’t stand for it, I will continue to speak out against it, and I damn sure will never purchase it.

    Melissa Wardy
    Pigtail Pals – Redefine Girly

  • Melissa Wardy

    Spongebob is not a human, and his body is a square shape. Not the same message AT ALL. Not when Ariel’s waist has the same circumference as Cinderella’s upper arm.

  • Sheila234

    There is an obesity epidemic, and the public believes this wholeheartedly, so I can see why manufacturers think this is a good way to make money. It is a scheme that will work because if you just look around, children are getting fatter and the rise in type II diabetes is alarming. Portion controlled snacks are what young children need nowadays. This will counter mc donald’s marketing hamburgers.

    Beloveddivas — I don’t see the problem in protesting this marketing, but this idea of making unnecessarily fatty food in protest bewilders me. I didn’t even know people still use lard at home to cook entrees!

  • Jenna

    Obesity “epidemic”… the very words you parrot tells me you are in total thrall of the media hype. In fact, studies show that weights for men and women have leveled off since 1999. In fact overweight people have a higher mortality than normal weight people in large controlled studies. The media hyper-coverage of the so called obesity epidemic has nothing to do with health and has everything to do with a cultural bias against size. If you look around Sheila, you will see women who loathe themselves, who keep flinging themselves into countless unsuccessful dieting schemes where true scientific evidence (NOT paid for my the dieting industry) see successes as about .001% over five years.

    Perhaps the issue at hand is a serious fall out with food. Are you telling me most moms do NOT portion control their snacks? Come on, every Mom says, “Jimmy you can have 2 cookies for after school.” What Mom does not do is position these snacks under a calorie amount readable even to children while their favorite cartoon characters look on approvingly.

  • Anonymous

    I think you meant lower mortality there, unless I am misreading your intent? As far as portion control, that might be the norm in your income bracket but in the parents I see around me (not being one myself) the norm seems to be “just go get something out of the cupboard”.

    Unless of course the kid is a single ounce over whatever weight that parent has decided is appropriate. After that, they generally start not letting them eat anything on their own, and portion controlling to the point of constant hunger everything else. Because you know, fat is worse than starvation.

  • Belovedideas

    Sheila234, I go to GREAT LENGTHS to get organic, pastured meats and dairy from a local farm as part of nutritionist supervised eating plan to rehabilitate my body from years of destructive dieting. The Real Food movement is also screaming over the 80 calorie death packs of junk calories being peddled by this company. If children are getting fatter (can you site a source?) stuffing them full of refined, processed garbage sweetened with corn syrup is certainly not the answer.

    Cooking “unnecessarily fatty foods”?? Try necessarily fatty foods. After denying my body essential fatty acids necessary to process and assimilate nutrients for years as a body punishing dieter I am healing. Thank you for your alarmed exclamation point. If you want to argue about food and nutrition come to my blog as I would consider it impolite to take up too much space in the comments here. – Lisa

  • Emma1979

    I am reminded that some children voraciously read what is around them as the next step after “Dick and Jane”.

    Unfortunately, decades of intake-obsessing has left me with quite disorganised eating habits. I also wonder if I had had a less calorie-minded pre-pubescence, whether my basal metabolic rate would be less sluggish.

  • Jenna

    Thank you for the edit yes that was what I meant in term of mortality. But I am curious about your comment, what do you mean by, “might be the norm in your income bracket but in the parents I see around me…”? Are you equating income level with a style of parenting here? If so, what is the correlation?

  • Anonymous

    Yes, Spongebob is not serving as the model of all things amazing and perfect and svelte for the male gender, but you betcha Cinderella is the source of all things good for the little girlies.

    In any case, shooting for equal amounts of body shaming starting from a young age isn’t exactly the kind of equality between the sexes that I’d like to strive for, thanks.

  • Anonymous

    I have family members and friends spread out over a HUGE income range here. And I’ve noticed that the higher the household income, the more likely it is that the parents will “micromanage” the kids. For instance, in my friends at the highest income bracket (up to and above 100k a year), every second of the child’s day is managed — nap time starts at exactly this time and lasts exactly this long, snack time will be at exactly this time and consist of exactly this pre-measured portion which if it isn’t finished in the time limit will be thrown out, play time is exactly from this time to that time with exactly these toys, and the kid ends up needing a Blackberry at 3 just to manage the playdates.

    I’ve noticed that, as you go down the income brackets, parents tend not to micromanage so much… in my 50kish friends, snack time is as you described — “you may have this many cookies, now go read/play/whatever”, and the kid is left to decide if or when they actually eat their snack.

    Then once you get down to my income level, the sub 30k range, everything is basically fend for yourself except at mealtimes based off when Mom and Dad get home, try not to play in traffic, there are some apples and chips in the fridge if you get hungry.

    Now, this is just personal experience… but if we accept as a given the notion that poorer people, as a result of working too hard, being under too much stress, and being unable to afford much less have time to prepare the holy grail “healthy” diet and as a result are typically fatter on average… it makes sense. People in those income levels are also going to be too stressed, too harried, and have too many other concerns to have the mental fortitude to micromanage every second of their kids day down to counting all the calories. Mostly, they have the energy to make sure there is something for the kids to eat in between rushing around to try and get everything done in the eight or nine hours a day they aren’t working.

    Hence my comment about income brackets — the higher the family income, the more likely it is that one or both parents has the ability to actually practice any sort of portion control more effective than “don’t spoil your dinner” admonishments.

  • jenny

    I think you may be misreading the advertisement. I think that in todays society it is very hard to make healthy choices for your children and with the obesity rate growing having “fun” healthy options is key when it comes to packing lunches for school. As for the princesses looking fit and polished, thats just the way they were created, the were created to be perfect, it’s Disney…all the good guys are that way :)

  • Belovedideas

    @Jenny I don’t see anything healthy in the ingredients of this product. The princesses don’t look fit, they look unrealistically emaciated. All the good guys look unrealistically skinny? You’re smiling about that?

  • tiredofpseudooutrage

    Oh the shock! The horror! The outrage! God forbid we address the fact that children are facing the highest rate of obesity, and or the fact that pre-diabetes is grossly predominant in adolescents.

    Did anyone think that perhaps this may work in the general public’s favour? Perhaps it’s a good idea to inform parents of how many calories, how much sugar and how much fat their children are consuming? I fail to see why this is a bad thing. And Disney characters’ figures have always been exaggerated. They are cartoons.

    Sit down with your children. Discuss the importance of a healthy diet. Discuss the importance of a healthy body image. End of story. Honestly.

  • tiredofpseudooutrage

    Hi there. Could I have the academic/scientific papers from which you pulled these stats?

  • Jenna

    sure… take a look at Heath St Every Size by Linda Bacon for starters read her cited sources for all the academic research papers she cites

  • Jenna

    sure… take a look at Heath St Every Size by Linda Bacon for starters read her cited sources for all the academic research papers she cites

  • Jenna

    Honestly, if you have read the responses and still reply like this… really I do not know what to say…but it sounds like you are in need of some new reading material!… little girls have a greater pressure to be thin than ever before, they have lost their innocence… again I ask you Disney characters, the Princesses are for a market age of between about 3 to 7. The child can either read the package and make child like inferences… equating with BEAUTY, DESIRABILITY to weight and size… this has nothing, absolutely NOTHING to do with health. What kind of parent is so obsessed with their preschooler gaining weight and being fat that they need 80 calories emblazoned on the package? Does chocolate snacks encourage health, or is it s treat? Is not a sweet treat by definition an indulgence? Snack packs like these normalize processed foods at a time when a child’s taste for food is forming (hence why there is nothing like moms cooking for everyone…) only 80 calories I can eat this and be thin. THAT is the only message this is displaying.A child who is predisposed to gain weight at a young age (like I was) that little snack pack would not do a thing to make them thin. Perhaps we should focus on health and wellness and not size. It is the same old story that never works but we keep trying it again and again.Its just the beginning of most women’s constant obsession with an almost impossible cultural ideal. Every generation that pressure is exerted on ever younger girls. Body shame. Yeah that snack pack will encourage distorted food relationships and will absolutely do nothing to promote health in any sense of the word. You can discuss healthy body image all you want but when you allow products like above into your home it sends a mixed message at the detriment of the child.

  • sue

    the number of calories is probably just for the mothers who are shopping for their children’s lunches. the mothers should know how much their children are eating every day.
    these companies started writing “100 calories!” very big on their products to attract the people who are shopping for them. when i go shopping for a snack and i can’t decide which to get, i get the one with less calories. it’s a marketing strategy. these signs are made for the people who buy them. obviously, little 5 year old girls are not buying these products.

  • Belovedideas

    Sue, Little girls are reading the words, seeing the images and ingesting the god-awful nutrient-less food.
    It IS a marketing strategy, one I’m not buying into.

  • definatalie

    Why are you on this web site? A fat activist web site?

  • definatalie

    Axis of Fat presents writing with a fat activist and size acceptance point of view. Telling the author they have misread something when obviously they have a huge issue with it is dismissive. Something tells me if you buy into the “omgbesity epidemic” that you’re not really across what this site has to offer yet, and I’d suggest lurking and reading a whole lot more.

  • Rosalind

    It’s important to keep your children healthy, of course, but why not let them be children for a while? Why should they worry about calories? They should be eating healthily, with everything in moderation. To demonise certain foodstuffs can mean that children could grow up with an unhealthy attitude towards food.

    Eating well should be common sense, and common sense is taught. When I put on weight, I knew I was eating crap, but there were other reasons there for me to eat. Of course children should be taught about a healthy diet, but calorie counting is a waste of time.

  • TD

    Reel back the defense a touch and assist this woman in understanding something she is clearly not familiar with. Telling her she’s being dismissive is like telling a 2 year old that they’re stupid for not knowing algebra.

  • TD

    Not to mention that every single one of those 80 calories is full of processed, saturated fat and high fructose corn syrup – all of which wreak havoc on your organs! In no way is this a good thing. For kids, adults, women, men – ANYONE.

  • TD

    Questioning your visitors’ presence instead of approaching them with information and eagerness to educate is a huge, huge mistake, in my opinion.

  • Jenna

    The problem TD is that this person did NOT read the comments or the extended viewpoints which is why this marketing strategy is offensive. Jenny is more than welcome to read all the rebuttals I made and ask questions accordingly. For fear of sounding like a broken record should I say, “please read comment 5 comment 10 and comment so and so in rebuttal to your comment?” At that point it becomes an issue of true communicaiton vs. everyone screaming and no one listening. Jenny’s position we have pretty much heard our whole lives and everyday, our position however, is unique AND data driven, perhaps asking her to read a little more would be of benefit.

  • The South Beach Diet

    Actually the best diets to lose weight don’t focus on what your number is on the scale but the amount of body fat you have. It is a proven fact in many studies that this should be the focus because fat is the cause of your body being the size that it is, not the number that you see when you step on the scale. So don’t be discouraged when the scale shows the numbers going down slower than you think. Instead, watch how your clothes are fitting you. A good sign that you are using one of the weight loss plans, which are effective, will be how loose your clothes get, whether the number or the scale changes a lot or not.

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