Wednesday, October 6, 2010


This morning, my good friend Kiirsten forwarded me an article from Marie Claire called The Hunger Diaries. The article has caused quite the controversy in the food blogger world. I’ll give you the gist of it. The authors make the claim that many food blogs similar to my own claim to be about healthy living, but are in fact broadcasting a new form of disordered eating:

But behind the cutesy titles and sloganeering (Summit motto: "Bloggers for a Balanced Lifestyle") lies an arguably unhealthy obsession with food, exercise, and weight. The blogs' pages of meticulous food photographs and descriptions are often updated several times a day and immediately dissected by readers. A typical morning post documents breakfast with a photo and description—say, a smoothie of raw spinach and rice milk—followed by an afternoon report on the day's herculean exercise and an evening update on perfectly portioned snacks and dinner. Pare once chased a 10-mile run with a flourless, low-fat, black-bean "brownie." Boyle ran 22 miles and, after a day of light eating, signed off with, "I am so hungry!"

I felt the article was biased and took many quotes from these blogs out of context. None of the writers featured post every single thing they eat each day. Also, their emphasis is not on dieting or weight loss bur rather healthful, balanced living (similar to this one).

Though I obviously agree that blogs which promote disordered eating are an issue, I don’t think this particular article focused on these problematic sites. Instead, it targeted blogs that I believe present a very balanced approach. Perhaps healthy living food bloggers like myself are a little more “obsessed with healthy eating and exercise” than the average American. Is that a bad thing though? In a country struggling with an obesity epidemic, could we stand to be a little more obsessed? We are surrounded by advertisements everyday that enforce unhealthy habits- perhaps it is good that the counter movement is growing in intensity?

I think the article unfairly accuses some of these food bloggers of endorsing starvation diets and exercise dependence. I read many of the blogs mentioned and they all seem to promote a very balanced lifestyle. Reading the article made me wonder if my own words, thoughts and pictures could be misinterpreted…

I’m hoping people will comment and share their thoughts because I found the whole article very unsettling.


  1. Often, it is easy to reduce something to its lowest common denominator. The author of the article, unfortunately, does not know what drives every single food blogger yet makes large statements as if they are true for all.

    I have personally enjoyed reading along to keep up with you and PK, and to learn more about vegan living and recipes.

    Keep it up and thanks for the listing on your blogroll!


  2. I totally agree with your stance on the situation. I also think the article made it seem like every person reading food blogs is looking to mimic the lifestyle of the bloggers. You have many non-vegan followers who are interested in healthy recipes and alternatives. Personally I just take bits and pieces of the blogs I read and try to incorporate some helpful recipes and advice into my boring day to day food routine. Just because I read that you're vegan doesn't mean I'm becoming vegan :)

    Also, I agree with Tom- I've loved being able to keep up with what is going on with you and Pat!!!

    xo Kiirst

  3. I love reading your blog, although my blog is definitely not focused on healthy living! haha I mentioned you in my post today though

    Hope all is well! :)


  4. I'm sure there are plenty of people that post just to keep themselves on track, eating healthy and keeping up with a healthy lifestyle but I agree I don't think its a bad thing! More people should be aware of what they put in their mouths and how much time they spend as a couch potato!

    I love reading your blog too cause you always have fun new ideas for food I would never even think of. It also gives me a little inspiration to be healthier throughout the day. So dont listen to him! Keep on keeping on :)

  5. Well perhaps I am biased, but I love your blog, you, your meat eating hubby and all the things you write about healhy eating. I think the key here is that you write about EATING...not about starving or limiting portions or calories. Nor do I ever see the words "skinny" or "fat" in any of your posts...I think that people should have all the facts before they make sweeping judgements about an entire group of people...FOOD BLOGGERS UNITE! Now if you'll excuse me, I am going to read the rest of your blog and finish my Ben and Jerry's ice cream! Love you lots!

  6. Thanks for all the thoughts on this... you guys keep me going : )

  7. I agree with the above posts. I've never seen Beanz "sabotage" a dessert (as the article said some bloggers do). If there was any of that going on, Beanz would be in trouble.

  8. i agree too! even though im not a vegan and don't have any plans of becoming a vegan, your blog has definitely motivated me to add more healthy foods into my diet - while still keeping the cheese (because we know i can't live without cheese). i think the best thing about your meals is that they are varied and include desserts too! keep it up!