What is an almond mom and why are they going viral on TikTok again?

TikTok trend stems from a 2013 ‘Real Housewives’ episode

Meg Warren-Lister
Thursday 27 April 2023 05:18 BST
Gigi Hadid and Ashley Graham on the body shaming they receive as models

TikTok users have been skewering diet culture with the latest trend critiquing so-called “almond moms”.

Amid the resurgence in Y2K fashion and a idolising of thin body types, creators on the video-sharing platform have started using the term to describe parents who push restrictive eating habits onto their kids.

In one such post, a TikTok user mimics a mother telling their child: “Oh you want something sweet? How about a grape?”

In another iteration of the trend, influencer Alex Light says in mock-disbelief: “I just saw Danielle’s mum at the supermarket, she’s put on so much weight.”

At the time of writing, the “#AlmondMoms” hashtag has racked up just shy of a billion views on TikTok, rocketing up from the 189 million Teen Vogue reported in February.

The term stems from a 2013 episode of Bravo reality show The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, featuring star Yolanda Hadid and her then-teenage daughter, Gigi.

Gigi, who is now a model, told her mother over the phone that she was “feeling really weak”, having only eaten “half an almond”.

In response, Yolanda advised the 17-year-old to “have a couple of almonds and chew them really well”.

Last year, Yolanda defended herself over the comments, telling People that they were taken out of context.

“This was a small little clip from Housewives. Gigi was calling because she wasn’t feeling good and I apparently said, half asleep, ‘Have two almonds,’” she said. “I don’t even remember why two or what. There was no rhyme or reason to it. It’s such a silly narrative that is out there, that has nothing to do with the reality of our lives.”

On TikTok, social media users use the term “almond moms” while referencing internalised fatphobia, disordered eating and restrictive food habits of so-called almond moms the world over.

“Grocery shopping with your almond mom,” and “POV: You live in an almond mom household” read two such videos, which involve examples of problematic beliefs around food that parents can project onto their children.

Gwyneth Paltrow was recently called “the mother of all almond moms” after disclosing a “wellness routine” featuring bone broth followed by a one-hour workout.

The Goop founder was widely criticised for the diet, leading her to clarify that she “eats full meals” and doesn’t encourage others to try the diet.

For anyone struggling with the issues raised in this piece, eating disorder charity Beat’s helpline is available 365 days a year on 0808 801 0677. You can visit their website here.

NCFED offers information, resources and counselling for those suffering from eating disorders, as well as their support networks. They can be reached by phone on 845 838 2040 or their website here.

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