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Children’s dieting story book is deeply concerning – Jo Swinson

September 1, 2011

Campaign for Body Confidence co-founder Jo Swinson MP has criticised a new children’s book, which tells the story of how dieting transforms the life of an insecure schoolgirl to the school soccer star.

‘Maggie goes on a diet’, by Paul Kramer, will be published in October this year. The book is aimed at 6 to 12 year-olds, and its damaging message has already attracted widespread criticism from parents and experts alike.

Commenting, Jo Swinson said:

“A book about dieting aimed at 6-12 year olds is deeply concerning.  It sends a careless message to young and impressionable girls that being skinny is the only way to succeed in life, and perpetuates the myth that dieting is healthy.  Instead we should be promoting healthy lifestyles and encouraging children to develop confidence through activity and sports.  Our visual culture is full of unrealistic and idealised imagery of women’s bodies as it is, without this new added pressure from a children’s story to see being thin and the be-all and end-all.”


For more information on Maggie Goes on a Diet, see

One Comment leave one →
  1. September 2, 2011 6:26 am

    so a man writes a book on a little girl needing to lose weight – and she becomes a star as a result of being skinny. I know that so many people would see this as a positive – my parent’s definately would have. This is so detrimental to little girls’ sense of self in a highly charged developmental time. Can’t we just let them grow up to be who they are and teach them some really good habits along the way in a positive fashion? Thanks for bring it up and YAY – Jo Swinson – wish we had a few more pollies like you in Australia!

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