Intuitive Eating & Body Positivity with Terri Pugh

24. Where your diet club membership fee really goes

September 26, 2021 Terri Pugh Episode 24
Intuitive Eating & Body Positivity with Terri Pugh
24. Where your diet club membership fee really goes
Show Notes Transcript

Slimming clubs are essentially MLM businesses, that's multi level marketing. So people at the top earn money from the people in their chain below and from their sales. The diet consultants are being rewarded with cars, holidays, fancy awards nights, ego massaging. This is where your membership fee is going. What it's not paying for...... any kind of consideration of your health.

Also, find out why this week has consisted of Strictly Come Dancing and Ben & Jerrys, why I need to be famous, and how my tooth made someone laugh.

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Please note, this podcast is intended to be general information for entertainment purposes only. Any figures quoted are correct at the time of recording. As always, please seek the support of a registered professional before making changes to your diet or lifestyle⁠, or if you feel that you are affected by any of the topics discussed.


Related Topics:

Intuitive Eating, HAES, Health At Every Size, Body Positivity, Body Confidence, Body Positive, Anti Diet, Non Diet, Diet Culture, Food Freedom, Fat Acceptance, Fat Liberation, Self Care, Weight Loss, Eating Disorder, Eating Disorder Recovery, Disordered Eating, Nutritional Therapy, Slimming World, Weight Watchers, Cambridge Diet, Cambridge Plan, 121 Diet, Lighter Life, Noom, Coaching, Healing, Health, Wellness, Calorie Counting, Macros

Welcome to the Intuitive Eating and Body Positivity podcast. I'm Terri, and I'll be talking about all that intuitive eating, body positivity and health at every size and shaking off weight stigma, diet culture and food rules so that we can all have a better relationship with food and our bodies.


Hello. How are you this very wonderful day. Are you well? I am good. I've had a good week, actually, I feel good.


I feel positive. Some days, some weeks just get you like that, don't they? Make you feel good about life? It's been quite a good week. Do you want a tooth update too?


I laugh because I had a really lovely email this week. It was from a lady in Canada who sent me an email to tell me how much she likes the podcast and how the message is much needed, and I really appreciate that. In the email though, she said that she loves the way I say tooth I didn't know there was anything odd about the way I say it. But then I said to a friend of mine about this email and I said it'd been so lovely to hear from somebody, and I liked that in there was a little bit of something personal and that she commented on the way I said tooth. My friend said, well, I've always thought it's funny the way you say tooth.


It must be a local thing. I got my husband to say it. He says it's the same as me. It must be a local thing. So if you are a tooth person, tooth, if not, this is for you, tooth. It feels so unnatural to me.


Anyway, here is the tooth up to date for you. It's still there. It's still the same. But I've got an appointment at the dentist. Oh, I don't know if I've told you about this. I was waiting for an appointment at a new dentist, at a dentist that I think can do the work that needs doing because apparently my dentist cannot. So I have been waiting for this appointment. I was told it was not going to be until the middle of October.


And then they rang me this week and said, come on in, we'll see you. So I'm off to the dentist. I've never been so happy to be going to the dentist in all my life. So next week we'll have another tooth update for you, tooth update for you, but it's still there. It's still hanging on.


What else has happened this week? Strictly Come Dancing has started. I love Strictly for so many reasons. Firstly, it signals the run up to Christmas. Oh, I love Christmas. So anyway, Strictly, it's kind of the run up Christmas, isn't it? As soon as that starts, you know that come the end of it is going to be nearly Christmas.


And then I just also love the dancing. I love it so much. If I had a bucket list top of that bucket list would be to be on Strictly. Every week I say to my husband, I am so jealous. I'm so jealous.


I want to sit in the audience. I do. But more than that, I want to be on Strictly. So here is the plan, folks. We're going to make me famous, right? Only famous people go on Strictly.


And now no disrespect to the people who are on it but now they're not even really A list celebrities. Now we're hitting kind of lower level celebrity status. There's always a news presenter. There's always an actor or an actress from a soap opera. Soap opera? Do people say soap opera anymore.


There's always an actor or an actress from a soap. So this one is Eastenders this time, but there's always.... Oh, actually, I think one of the girls is off Corrie as well and has now moved to Hollyoaks, so covering all the soap bases there, aren't we?


Also, what else is there? There's always, like a YouTube star or something like that. So here's the plan. We're going to make me famous on that kind of level. I reckon I could become, you know, social media famous, right?


Share people share the hell out of my stuff. I want to go on Strictly. Let's start a campaign. What we call it #PughforthePasodoble? #PasodoblePugh? Catchy.


Anyway, that's the plan, folks, right? That's what we're doing there. We're going to make me famous so I can go on Strictly. You watch this space. This time next year, I'm going to be there. If we could only make our dreams a reality.


Also, this week, more on topic I bought a tub of Ben and Jerry's. I know wild, right. But the thing with this tub of Ben and Jerry's is that I haven't bought a tub of ice cream proper ice cream for a long time.


When I was last buying ice cream in the tub, it was those types of, remember Halo top? Remember that stuff? It was dressed up as ice cream, but it was some ridiculously low number of calories for the entire tub, so they would promote it in the lines of you can eat this entiretub of ice cream guilt free.


Now, this in itself is problematic to start with, because firstly, you don't have to feel guilty when you eat a tub of ice cream, whether you eat a couple of spoons of it or whether you eat the entire tub. If you want to eat that, eat it simple.


I say it's simple. I know it's not that simple for a lot of people, just to caveat that sentence, but basically, you shouldn't feel guilty if you choose to eat a tub of ice cream. But the flip side of this is also they are advertising it as you can eat this entire type of ice cream for not very many calories. Go ahead and eat the whole tub. Well, that in itself is encouraging binge eating, is it not?


Go ahead, eat the lot. So you do because it's "allowed" and then afterwards you don't feel guilty because you've been told you're allowed to eat it and you Slimming plan or whatever has got an allowance for this. So it's all good.


But what you've also not done is had any kind of concept of when you've had enough of the ice cream, because you were just shovelling it in because you could. You hadn't stopped anywhere through that tub to decide whether you were satisfied by it or not, whether you had enough, whether you wanted to stop and come back to it later. And so it was a really bad idea, but was so popular amongst the diet clubs that you actually couldn't buy it sometimes because it has sold out. And it was really expensive as well. You had to wait until it was on offer, or at least I did. It was really expensive, way more than Ben and Jerry's charge, and I think they're overpriced.


So anyway, I went to the shop the other day, bought some bits and pieces and in the freezer were these tubs of Ben and Jerry's, and they were on offer. They were half price or something like that. And I decided to just buy a tub. It was glorious. It was so good.


I sat there with Strictly Come Dancing on the telly and my tub of ice cream and a spoon and away I went, and it was just great because I enjoyed the ice cream, but I didn't feel the need to eat the whole lot in one go, so about half of it, and then I put it in the freezer. Perfect. I was happy with that. And it means that I've now got more ice cream in the freezer, which I can have later, and I probably will because it's a nice warm day and I feel like a bit of ice cream.


Here's something that has annoyed me to this week. Now this annoys me on a regular basis, but I thought it would make a good topic for today's podcast because it's something that I think people are not necessarily that aware of. And that is where your money goes when you spend it on a diet. I think a lot of people think that when they pay their consultant, that it just pays for their salary, maybe or the paperwork that you get when you start. You know, you got a pack and you get some information and you have to sign up and fill in these forms and things like that. So maybe the money pays for that.


And maybe it pays for the premises. So if there is a club that you go to, maybe that pays for the hire of the venue, and we don't think any more of it. But what you don't realise is with a lot of these clubs, there is more going on behind the scenes with your money. And this week on social media, I saw some posts that emphasised this once more for me.


Now I know I've mentioned before that when you are going to a Slimming club these consultants are not educated in health and nutrition. They're not really there for your health. They're there largely for the money. So I know I've said that before, but here's an additionally dark side to that.


Your money is also paying for new cars, fancy holidays, fancy awards night, gifts every now and again, and a lot of ego massaging, because whether you realise it or not, the Slimming clubs are essentially MLM businesses. An MLM business is a multi level marketing business, and what that means is in order for the reps, the consultants, to be successful in their business, they need to recruit people underneath them or they need to make a lot of sales. Good examples of this outside of Slimming clubs is things like Avon and Arbonne and these other companies that get you to sign up as a rep.


They give you a kit, you hand out brochures and things, and then you sell their products and then you're encouraged to recruit people underneath you in order to take a share of their sales profits. And then you build up this down line and you have this stream of income coming up through the people that you recruit underneath you.


Slimming clubs do exactly the same thing. The people at the top of the business and their money from the people in the chain below. They earn their money from sales, and a proportion of that profit flows upwards. So have you ever been to a diet club and been asked if you would consider signing up as a consultant? I have.


I went to Slimming World. I was there for quite a long time and then the consultant started saying, you should really think about being a consultant. You should really think about doing this. You'd be very good at it. I would, by the way, but that's another thing. She would say, why don't you come to this event with me and see what it's all about? Why don't you just have a little look? Here's some information.


I was flattered at the time because I'd lost a lot of weight and I thought I was getting on well with the group and I thought I was quite personable and, yeah, maybe I would be good as a consultant. I never followed that up but the point here is that I thought I was being asked to be a consultant because I would be genuinely good at the job and I knew the plan inside out. I'd had good success on it, and I would just be right for that position.


What I know now is that my recruitment as a consultant would mean that the consultant of the group that I was going to would get and money from my sales, my recruits, my members.


Isn't that sly? Isn't that really sneaky? I don't like that at all now I look back on it, but it is obviously a money maker for the consultants because they encourage people to recruit constantly. They have these big recruitment events where you can go along and see what it's like and get some information and hear from successful people in the industry.


They just wouldn't put those events on if they didn't work and if there was not money to be made from having a downline of recruits. Recruits equals commission.


And then let's think about the sales aspect of this. So even if you're a consultant that's not actively recruiting underneath you, you're going to be making some money from the things that you sell as add ons to your members. So you know that you're encouraged to buy membership passes? Don't pay weekly, pay ten weeks or twelve weeks, six weeks, whatever, you know, bulk buying of weeks.


And that means that you'll keep coming to class, doesn't it? That means you'll keep buying the products, those products that are on display as you queue up to pay your membership fee for that week. Chocolate bars, magazines, snacks, gadgets to help you on your journey. And if you've got a business that primarily runs from product, you know, milk shakes, that sort of thing, then you are going to be pushing those products and sell, sell, sell so that you can earn the commission from the number of sales that you make and from the profits of selling those products.


The consultants have to buy these products themselves first. So no consultant is going to put that outlay out there if it wasn't worth it for them, would they? I wouldn't put money down to buy a product that didn't make me money if I sold it so they are obviously making a tidy little profit off the things that they're selling to you otherwise they just wouldn't do it. They just wouldn't sell them.


And this week, especially it's aggravated me because I've seen the fruits of those sales. I've seen the fruits of those recruitments. They have been flaunted on social media for the world to see, and consistently too, constantly posting pictures about the things that their company has bought for them or helped them to achieve.


One account that I follow regularly posts about holidays that their company has paid for. You know, luxurious, exotic trips abroad, all bought and paid for by the company to thank them for their sales or to recognise their sales.


They post about cars that the company helps them achieve because these companies reward top recruiter, top sales.


They have these achievement bands, bronze, silver, gold, platinum, whatever, whatever band names they are, I don't really know, but they have these bands, these targets. Essentially that the consultants are trying to achieve and trying to get in order to get the good stuff. They get the recognition of being a gold consultant or whatever their bands might be, they get rewarded for these achievements for hitting these targets by being given things and bought things. Here's a holiday. Here's a car.


I'm not even kidding. Here is a car. And even the smaller levels, here is a watch. Here is some cash. Here are tickets to events, all sorts. All sorts of things being thrown at these consultants in order to encourage them to sell more and recruit more and have more members all making money for the company.


But the problem is that the consultants are driven by these targets. They're driven by the prospects of let me say again, cars, money, holidays, gifts, events, the prestige. The prestige, the supposed glory, of being one of the company's highest sellers or highest recruiters.


I, for one, don't want to see these things anyway. I don't want to see somebody bragging about how much they have ripped me off in an effort to get the good stuff from their company. I don't want to see them showing off all these things that they're being given while I am here struggling with my weight.


Because as a Slimming club member, you're not there for fun, are you? You're not there because you love it. You are there because you are desperate to lose weight. And if your consultants stood in front of you, face to face, and said to you, guess what the company has bought me this week, then quite frankly, you're going to want to punch her in the face. A bit extreme I know, but nobody wants it rubbed in their face, do they?


So I don't want to see that stuff non stop on social media. I don't want to see the awards. It doesn't make me say, well done you for being an awesome consultant. It just makes me think of the amount of money that is being taken of people that are desperate and are looking for a last ditch attempt at losing this weight for good.


However, we've all had that consultant, haven't we, that makes you feel like their friend. They make you feel like they care about you. They make you feel like they are there for you, just for you.


And I know that some people will be sat listening to this saying, but my consultant does care about my health. My consultant really does care about my health. He rings me. He makes sure that I'm happy. He makes sure that I'm constantly losing weight. He tells me how well I'm doing.


Yeah, he tells you how well you're lining his pocket. She tells you how well you are doing, staying on plan and earning her money. It's really, really sad and I wish I didn't have to be doing this episode, but it's the truth.


If you took away all those things, if you took away the cars and the holidays and the awards and the money, if you took away the glamour of the events that they go to and you took away the Fame and the respect that they're getting from the people in their company for being so high up the chain do you think that they would still want the job?


I mean, let's face it, we all go to do our day job, don't we, because we're getting paid. We're very, very lucky if we are in a position where we truly, truly love what we're doing. But I wouldn't go and do my job if I wasn't getting paid for it, in my day job, I wouldn't go and do my main day job if I wasn't being paid to do it.


And certainly if the company started throwing all these goodies at me, it's going to make me more inclined to do it and do well. So that's the reality. These people are not ultimately doing it because they care about you and your health. They are doing it for what they can get out of it. True story. Sorry, not sorry.


It made me realise why I do my group coaching. It's made me realise that I'm not here trying to make it make big bucks for me. I am just trying to give people a way to escape these diet clubs and these consultants that don't give a damn. These consultants that are not trained in nutrition.


They really don't care that much about you as a person. While you're putting money in their pocket they love you. If you stop, do you think they're still going to contact you? Are they still going to be on the phone or on the end of an email asking you how you are? I doubt it.


But for me, this coaching, it is way, way, way more important. I just want to see people I have a better relationship with food. I want you to have a better relationship with food. I want you to have a better relationship with your body and be more confident in the person that you are and it doesn't matter what size you are. I'm not going to be here telling you that you're more valuable if you lose weight.


I've had somebody in the group this week who has had a breakthrough with some food. Food that she hasn't been able to touch in, like forever. And she's eaten some this week. For me, that's massive. For me, that's more than any amount of money you can put in my pocket. That's more than any reward that you can give me.


Honestly, the satisfaction through this is incredible. I just don't see consultants get in the same buzz out of you losing weight. I just don't think it's possible.


So now are you happy putting your money in those people's pockets anymore? Have a little think about that. As the old saying goes, you stick with me and we'll go places. Who said that, by the way? Who said that line? Anybody know?


Somebody tell me who said it. Please let me know. Please tell me if you know. I've got these random lines and things going around my head. I have no idea where half of them come from.


Anyhow. Let's do this week's listener question. This week I was asked "how to be more mindful of negative self talk. It's so ingrained in my brain I don't even notice".


Oh, isn't that the truth? Isn't that the truth? We talk to ourselves so negatively all the time and we don't even realise it because it becomes a habit.


It becomes a way of life. We constantly put ourselves down and we say negative things to ourselves and they can be really, really small things but we don't even notice. We can say big things like we can look in the mirror and say, oh, God, you look fat today. Oh, look how ugly you are today, but you don't realise the very small things when deciding whether to have food, for example. You shouldn't eat that or you've eaten enough today.


That kind of comment, that kind of little voice in your head that is constantly telling you what you should and shouldn't eat or what you should and shouldn't do or where. The first thing I would say is, have a listen to episode 19 where I talked about who the food police are. The food police are these little voices in your head? It's the negative self talk, and episode 19 goes into that into more detail, explains really what it is and where it makes an appearance and how you can start to deal with that.


But I'd also add on to that, you have to start having respect for yourself. Like real respect for yourself, and by respect, I don't mean in the same way as you would say, respect a parent or respect somebody in the workplace or respect somebody in the industry that you look up to. More you have to have a real respect for yourself, for your body, for what it can do, for how it keeps you alive and how it does such wonderful things for you.


Every body has its issues. I don't know that there's one person on the face of the planet that doesn't have a part of their body that they wish worked better. So for example, my eyes, I wear contact lenses.


I only have one eye that really focuses properly, the other one I have very, very limited site in. If I lost the site in my one eye, I would be registered blind, and that's because it's a thing that I've had since birth. My one eye did not develop properly and that is an issue. It's not a big issue for me day to day. I've obviously grown up with it. Learn to live with it doesn't impact on much that I do. However, I would like both my eyes to be fully functioning. I would like to have perfect vision. I would like to not have to wear contact lenses or glasses, but that's just the way it is for me.


Then you've got people in a much, much more serious condition. Disabilities, things like that. There are many, many people who have disabilities that although they doesn't hold them back if you gave them the choice, do you think they would actually have a fully functioning body the way that it's supposed to function rather than having the disability?


Sure. Probably. I'm making a guess, obviously, because I'm not in that position, but I'm willing to say that most disabled people would trade their disabilities for a body that functioned the way it was supposed to if it was going to be working properly.


But we can all have a respect for ourselves no matter what condition we're in. No matter what our body does or does not do, we can all have a respect for ourselves, because if you don't respect yourself, nobody else is going to respect you either. Getting rid of the negative self talk is a big leap into having better respect for yourself.


You would not expect anybody to say the things to you that you say to yourself, and so you have that respect for yourself and you make a concerted effort to not do it. The problem comes when, like the person asking the question says, it's so ingrained that you don't have any concept that it's even happening anymore. But this is unfortunately where you have to do a little bit of work and you have to start paying attention to your thoughts. Start taking notice of what you're saying to yourself in the day.


It's about taking real notice of what you're saying to yourself in different situations, so you can start that by deciding tomorrow I'll get up and I will pay attention to my thoughts.


And what that means is getting up in the morning, being kind to yourself. When you first look in the mirror, catching those thoughts, paying attention, and catching the thoughts that you have as you are looking in the mirror. And when you're getting dressed pay attention to what you're saying to yourself when you're getting dressed, how you think you look and turning it around. Turning every negative into a positive.


Then as you go through the day and you're eating or drinking or catching yourself in mirrors, or shop windows is another example that I use quite often, when you're seeing yourself and hearing yourself, what are you saying to yourself?


This is about tuning in. It's about starting to really actively tune in and paying attention to those thoughts, and then with every negative thought, you turn it around and you come up with a positive.


When you catch yourself saying I shouldn't eat that I had lunch not long ago, you turn that around and you say I had lunch not long ago, but I'm still hungry, or I had lunch not long ago but I really fancy that right now, so it's fine to eat it.


If you're looking in the mirror, you might say, these clothes look awful on me today. I look so fat. You can turn that around and you can say I don't like the way these clothes look on my body today so I'm going to find something else to whether I will feel more comfortable in.


Do you see what I mean? So I have a little listen to the food police episode. You'll understand those thoughts and feelings a bit more then. And then set yourself the task of really paying attention. The more you pay attention, the more natural it will be for you to hear those negativities, and also the more natural it will become for you to be positive about yourself and in your day to day thoughts.


Okay, so I am off to.... what am I going to do today? I'm going to do some work on my new website. I've got a new website coming out in a couple of weeks, so I'm going to do a bit of work on that and just enjoy my weekend. Just have some down time I think. I will speak you again next week.


In the meantime, don't forget, please get me to Strictly. Share the hell out of me all over the place. Get me to, I don't know, I would take Z level celebrity status right now if that meant it would get me on Strictly Come Dancing.


That's your mission for this week, and I look forward to updating you on my contact from Strictly Come Dancing by the end of the week, telling me that they're shortlisting me for next year.


Thank you. Have a lovely week. Have a really, really good week. I will speak to you next week. Bye bye.