TikTok launches scheme to boost awareness around diet misinformation online

The video-sharing platform is working with dieticians and other health experts.

TikTok has launched a campaign to help users better identify misleading content around diet and exercise.

The video-sharing app is working with the British Dietetic Association and will use videos from dieticians, nutritionists and popular TikTok creators to offer support and advice to users.

The scheme is the third instalment in TikTok’s #FactCheckYourFeed initiative, which has previously focused on media literacy and making good financial decisions online.

Social media platforms are under ongoing pressure to do more to combat the spread of harmful material online, with keen interest being paid to apps such as TikTok because of its predominantly younger user base.

Experts have raised concerns over the amount of diet, weight loss and nutrition content that appears online and its potential impact on younger social media users.

People exercise on outdoor equipment at Stoke Park, Guildford (Adam Davy/PA)
People exercise on outdoor equipment at Stoke Park, Guildford (Adam Davy/PA)

“Anyone who has spent any time on social media will be aware of the huge amount of information about diets, ‘super foods’, weight loss and nutrition that is shared,” the British Dietetic Association said.

“Unfortunately, much of it is not factual, and some of it can even be dangerous.

“We’re delighted TikTok are committed to challenging misinformation and giving us the opportunity to raise the profile of what dietitians do.”

TikTok said it “wanted to help our community stay informed” and “equip our users with the skills to navigate our platform and critically engage with content that they see online”.

“It is really important to us that our users feel that they have access to the right support and advice when it comes to diet and exercise information online,” the social media giant said.

“By working in partnership with the British Dietetic Association and some of our trusted creators, we hope that our community feels empowered and confident when it comes to spotting misleading information, and making decisions about nutrition and exercise which feel right for them.”

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