zara mcdermott disordered eating

‘Still proud’: Zara McDermott defends her ‘triggering’ weight loss photo in new BBC doc

Zara McDermott: Disordered Eating is out on iPlayer today

Two years ago, Zara McDermott was one of many celebs and influencers being called out for posting “body transformation” pics on Instagram.

Body transformation photos, or “fitspo,” have been around for a long, long time. Instagram is littered with diet content, and if you know anyone on a “weight loss journey,” chances are you’ve seen one of these images before. Zara in particular compared a photo of her in a bikini from her pre-Love Island days, to another underwear shot taken a year later. She revealed exactly how much weight she’d lost, before explaining in-depth about how much “healthier” she was after the change.

In her new BBC Three documentary Disordered Eating, the reality star acknowledges how triggering those posts could’ve been for her vulnerable followers. She explores the twisted world of diet culture, and opens up about how it’s affected her over the years.


Photo via BBC

While chatting with her boyfriend, Sam Thompson, Zara questioned why her 2020 transformation pic attracted so much backlash: “A lot of people feel like they’ve been triggered by something on my social media. Is it bad to promote, actually, a healthy diet?”

She continued, “I definitely see the problem with posting things like (the body transformation) because anyone may look at that and think, ‘is (the before pic) bad? Like, is this a bad size to be?’

“I’m still proud of myself for that, though.”

Sam then tells her, “if you want to lose a bit of weight in a healthy, natural way – sweet. But then again, maybe just don’t celebrate it online.”

zara mcdermott disordered eating

Photo via BBC

Zara explores the possibility that “fitspo” accounts (like her alt, @ADayWithZara) could be responsible for the record numbers of young people suffering from eating disorders. As well as talking to people suffering from the impacts of fatphobia and diet culture; she meets some of her youngest followers, for a greater insight into how her content makes them feel.

If you’re worried about your own or someone else’s health, you can contact Beat, the UK’s eating disorder charity, 365 days a year on 0808 801 0677 or  

Zara McDermott: Disordered Eating is available now on BBC iPlayer

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Featured image via BBC.