International No Diet Day

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International No Diet Day (INDD) is an annual celebration of body acceptance, including fat acceptance and Health At Every Size (HAES). International No Diet Day was started by Mary Evans Young in 1992 in the United Kingdom.[1] Feminist groups in other countries have started to celebrate International No Diet Day, including the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, India, Israel, Denmark, Sweden, and Brazil.

Since 1998, both the International Size Acceptance Association (ISAA) and the National Organization for Women (NOW) have sponsored similar days. ISAA's day is International Size Acceptance Day which is celebrated on 24 April.[2] NOW organized a Love Your Body campaign, with its annual Love Your Body Day in the fall,[3] which critiques what it defines as "fake images" of the fashion, beauty, and diet industries demanding that images of women with diverse body sizes and shapes are used instead.[4]

International No Diet Day is observed on May 6, and its symbol is a light blue ribbon.

Goals of the INDD[edit]

In celebrating International No Diet Day, participants aim to:


The Institute of Medicine's Committee to Develop Criteria for Evaluating the Outcomes of Approaches to Prevent and Treat Obesity in its book Weighing the Options: Criteria for Evaluating Weight Management Programs states that "the intractability of obesity" has led to the anti-dieting movement. International No Diet Day is then mentioned and the author's comment:

We agree, of course, that there should be more appreciation and acceptance of diversity in the physical attributes of people, more discouragement of dieting in vain attempts to attain unrealistic physical ideals, and no obsession with weight loss by individuals who are at or near desirable or healthy weights. However, it is inappropriate to argue that obese individuals should simply accept their body weight and not attempt to reduce, particularly if the obesity is increasing their risk for developing other medical problems or diseases.[5]


International No Diet Day was created by Mary Evans Young in 1992. Young is the director of the British group "Diet Breakers". After personally experiencing anorexia nervosa, she worked to help people appreciate the body they have. Young, a British feminist, developed her ideas both through her own experiences of being bullied at school for being fat and by speaking with women who attended the management courses she ran.

In May 1992, Young introduced the first No Diet Day. Although originally intended to be a UK-based National No Diet Day, Young was inspired to make the holiday an international one. It was a small affair to be celebrated by a dozen women with a picnic in Hyde Park, London. Ages ranged from 21 to 76 and they all wore stickers saying: "Ditch That Diet". It rained, and so Young held the picnic in her home.[6]

By 1993, feminists in many more countries were planning on celebrating International No Diet Day. Americans, particularly those in California, Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona, were concerned that the date clashed with the Cinco de Mayo celebrations in the southern states. For Young there was no particular significance to May 5, so she agreed to change the date to May 6.


INDD has evolved into No Diet Day, which is still held on May 6 and recommended as a marketing technique for restaurant owners via indulgent treats for their customers.[7] In a similar approach, in a discussion on social marketing techniques for Australian public health educators, it was suggested that local campaigns could be tagged onto a national social marketing strategy and the example given was to attach a local Healthy Eating campaign to 'National No-Diet Day'.[8]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "No Diet Day". National Eating Disorders Association. 7 February 2022. Retrieved 3 November 2022.
  2. ^ "5 Years of ISAA: A Historic Timeline". International Size Acceptance Association. Archived from the original on 3 March 2016. Retrieved 24 February 2013.
  3. ^ "Love Your Bidy". National Organisation for Women. Archived from the original on 24 January 2013. Retrieved 24 February 2013.
  4. ^ Kwan, Samantha (2011). Diet Industry in Encyclopaedia of Women in Today's World, Vol 1. Sage. p. 397. ISBN 978-1412976855.
  5. ^ Institute of Medicine, Committee (1995). Weighing the Options: Criteria For Evaluating Weight Management Programs. National Academies Press. pp. 62–3. ISBN 0309132576.
  6. ^ Mabutas, Vincent (6 May 2021). "International No Diet Day - May 6". National Today. Retrieved 3 November 2022.
  7. ^ Lambert, Tiffany (2003). Restaurant Publicity and Promotion on Just A Few Dollars a Day. Atlantic Publishing Company. p. 119. ISBN 0910627142.
  8. ^ Talbot, Lyn (2009). Promoting Health: The Primary Healthcare Approach. Else ire Australia. p. 237. ISBN 978-0729539241.

External links[edit]