A week ago a US senator decided to tackle the rise of detox tea promotion on social media, citing the product to be useless at best and dangerous at worst. From Kardashians to Cardi B to Amber Rose to Demi Lovato, these girls are touting the benefits of detox tea to keep their body shapely and trim.
Detox teas claim to help you lose weight by flushing toxins. What they didn't really say was that they rely on senna which is a form of laxative. Essentially it makes your body lose water and waste weight - everything that the the liver and kidney are already doing - but not burn fats. Therefore any weight lost would be temporary. And as with any other weight loss supplements, it is advised that the tea should be taken with balanced diet and a good measure of exercise, the two things that medical practitioners have been harping on and on for decades to keep oneself in good shape.
This detox tea is no different from detox juice or detox salad, all using the word 'detox' which means nothing in everyday life because the body is already flushing the chemicals that it doesn't need. No external help is needed unless you have a liver and/or kidney failure, in which case, go to a bloody hospital, not a salad bar. The only correct usage of the word detoxification is in situations of drug poisoning whereby medical intervention is needed to flush out the toxic chemicals or you'll die.
Yet the bastions of pop culture continue to fly the flag of misinformation. They did not disclose the army of personal trainers and dietitians, nor the rounds of cosmetic surgeries and liposuctions needed to produce their glorified bodies. Women who are already plagued with insecurities over their physical appearance flitting from one snake oil to another jumped on the latest detox fad hoping to attain the body their genes, and possibly lack of correct exercise and diet program, were not built for. The part which I find even more insidious is that these influencer women refuse to be held accountable for harmful misinformations they area spreading to the millions of people looking up to them. They are redirecting time, money and effort away from long-term lifestyle changes and a journey of self-acceptance. I am even more disgusted by the corporations selling bullshit pseudo-science that take advantage of women's insecurities and emotions by harnessing the power of celebrity culture.
In marketing there's a term called the 'mere-exposure effect' - a psychological phenomenon by which people tend to develop a preference for things merely because they are familiar with them, ie. the more you see something the more you start liking it. That familiarity leads to adoration and trust and bogus sense of friendship. Now that we have our own personal screens with us 24/7 it is hard to escape the clutches of celebrity influence. Celebrities are not infallible, yet people worship them like deities. I do believe that many of them have earned the right to stand on artistic pedestals through their craft, like musicians and artists. But when we look up to them to guide us in the difficult journey of love, mental and physical health, we have given them the right to stand on other pedestals they have not earned.