I'll Have What She's Having...


We like to see what people are eating.  Blogs, which were first created to follow politics, style or self-discovery in the kitchen (aka Julie & Julia) has evolved to a world-wide gawking, spotting and eyeing every morsel of food people create and consume. I cannot deny being a major follower of this trend. What can I say, I like seeing what Snackface  has been snacking on the night before and what concoction Healthy Exposures made. What can I say, it's fun. Though if I would have discovered food at during college it  may have been detrimental to my health.

While many food blogs featured on foodgawker or tastespotting (blogs that essentially are "a community visual driven potluck") are a great resource to see what tomatoes is in season in Southern California or how an Aussie whips up a mean platter of chicken meatballs, food blogs also have created an outlet for every aspiring health counselor (and some self-declared, whether qualified or not) with a following that could rival the viewing weather.com. Women, in particular, like to see what other women are eating. For some it's a great inspiration to be healthier,  for others watching people eat healthy somehow makes them feel healthier and for a latter group these blogs are like a blueprint for their next meal. This is where things can get a little shady.

Last year at "Healthy Living Summit," a blog convention in Chicago attended by over 200 avid "health foodie" bloggers, was reviewed by Marie Claire in "The Hunger Diaries: How Health Writers Could Be Putting You at Risk" (not to be confused with "The Hunger Games" where I believe cannibalism may override any pursuit of health) along with some interesting observations:

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!"

Without completely slandering the authors of these health-obsessed blogs I will keep them nameless,  though none of them necessarily look anorexic or even real athletic . Rather on most posts you'll find pictures of these authors after a sweaty run, with a exhausted smiles that screams, "Look what I can do!" , followed by a detailed log of their 9 mile runs. One can only assume such posts are created the unintended desire to somehow prove themselves; when daily workout routines are put up for the world to seee and every morsel consumed through the day is up,  there seems a desperate need for affirmation. Learning to eat healthy by following what a healthy person eats can certainly have a positive impact on your health and outlook on food. But there comes a point where line ought to be drawn.

I guess there will always be an obsession where there is interest. However for girls like me, there more like insightful cultural venture's when I can't always jump on a plane to have what she's having.