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‘Fasting Influencers’ Take Over Social Media: Sponsored Suhoor Smoothies Anyone?

Last updated on March 17, 2024

“Hangry? Try This $30 Protein Shake!” Fasting Influencers Colonize Social Feeds

Just when you thought the social media wellness sphere couldn’t get any more absurd, brace yourself for the rise of the “Fasting Influencer.” These seemingly glowing paragons of self-control have taken to Instagram and TikTok to extol the virtues of extended fasts, complete with artfully staged photos of themselves sipping electrolyte-infused water and gazing beatifically at sunsets…all while their stomachs audibly rumble in protest.

Of course, it wouldn’t be a true social media phenomenon without lucrative sponsorship deals. Fasting Influencers are hawking everything from designer water bottles (because apparently tap water breaks your fast?) to exorbitantly priced “fasting-friendly” supplements with dubious ingredients. Forget about the traditional pre-dawn meal of Suhoor during Ramadan – how about a $30 “Sunrise Energy Smoothie” packed with spirulina and enough buzzwords to make your head spin?

Naturally, they assure their followers that fasting is the key to effortless weight loss, radiant skin, and unlocking some nebulous state of peak mental performance. Never mind the nagging hunger pangs, irritability, and potential health risks – those can be conveniently edited out of the picture-perfect narratives they present.

Critics have been quick to denounce the trend, calling out the potential harm in promoting prolonged fasting to impressionable audiences, especially without medical supervision. “There’s a difference between occasional, mindful fasting and chasing an unrealistic ideal of deprivation, all in the name of likes and brand deals,” warns nutrition expert Dr. Sarah Ellis.

Yet, the Fasting Influencers remain undeterred, their perfectly filtered selfies and motivational captions raking in followers and engagement. As one particularly popular influencer, known for her 72-hour juice fasts and sponsored posts for electrolyte gummies, chirps: “Feeling light, energized, and ready to monetize my metabolism!”

Whether this trend represents a passing fad or a concerning new direction for the wellness industry remains to be seen. In the meantime, one thing’s for certain: as long as there are people seeking quick fixes and influencers willing to sell them, the curated world of online wellness will continue to churn out ever more questionable trends.

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