Has anyone else read the recent Marie Claire article on health bloggers? It’s called “The Hunger Diaries: How Health Writers Could Be Putting You At Risk.” Though I think it’s an intriguing topic and I have, at times, come across certain bloggers whose posts scream “EDNOS!” to me (that’s “Eating Disorder Not Otherwise Specified”), I kind of have to agree with Kath Younger of Kath Eats Real Food that the article does seem “one-sided.” True, I may be biased, because of course I’m inclined to side with an RD who also happens to be a proponent of real food, but if you read the article yourself, you’ll see what I mean. The comments are also pretty thought-provoking.
Personally, I don’t see how a blog could be any more or less damaging than a popular mainstream women’s magazine, especially now that many magazines also feature daily food and fitness blogs. As writers and readers, we all have a responsibility to do what’s best for ourselves and to be mindful of how our words and actions may be perceived by those around us.
To be fair, I have an education in nutrition which enables me to weed out what’s “valid” or “healthy” and what’s not—I recognize that few people have the science background that makes it easy to understand why carbs are not only okay but necessary. I can eat a piece of cake without freaking out or punishing myself the next day because I always leave room for treats—life without dessert just wouldn’t be the same.
I understand the risk of “copycats” when it comes to potentially dangerous behavior such as overtraining or being obsessive about food. That’s why I try to steer clear of “do like I do” overtones or being too specific about my own meals and exercise routines. We are all so different, and what works for one person may be the opposite of what works for someone else. What works for me now is very different from what did even a couple years ago!
While I do like to discuss cooking and share interesting concoctions, I also like to talk/ramble about current events and life as grad student balancing school, work, and (attempts at maintaining) my social life. I make it sound like I’m defending myself…and hey, maybe I am. If I randomly found my blog on the internet, I might call it a “healthy living” blog, even though I, the writer, think that sounds awkward and not quite the right term. I like to say that I write to understand—and to stay sane. Blogging gives me a space to pick apart what makes me tick.
So far, the only thing I’ve heard about this blog is that my recipes are “weird” and “good for people with cancer.” Haha I guess that’s better than being called “triggering” or dangerous…or “wholesome,” for that matter.