That Great Paradox: Food Professionals and Eating Disorders

Post-Episode Update:

I want to share a few resources that have come to my attention in the aftermath of airing this episode. I hope you find them useful:

Tips for sharing your story responsibly

Weight Bias and Stigma research, best practices, and academic publications


On Tuesday, November 27th the #LunchAgenda podcast will begin a new conversation, one that I’ve been scared to begin, because it’s personal, and I haven’t known the best way to tackle it. I’ve noticed over my years working in food organizations that many of the people who work in food jobs haven’t always had the most balanced relationship with food in their own personal lives.

I’m ready to talk about how I struggled with bulimia during and after college. I’m offering this conversation because what keeps the problem going is the alone-ness we feel when we’re keeping a habit to ourselves. There is an extra layer of shame that sits with those of us who work in food and aren’t sure we have the “right” to teach healthy eating, or feed others, if we at one time have struggled to feed ourselves. I want more people to talk about it and handle it openly with friends and family.

So in the upcoming episode, we’ll pick apart whether a correlation really exists between people who work in food and people with disordered eating. We’ll discuss why it may exist; whether it's a good or bad thing that people obsessed with their own food come to work in it; and how to move forward acknowledging this reality in ourselves and our field of work.

BUT FIRST: I need your help. Can you take 30 seconds to complete this survey by Sunday, 11/25? (Heads up: these questions contain information that may be sensitive, but the survey is anonymous). Participating will help me make the upcoming episode much more informative. My goal is 500 responses by Sunday, so please share this with friends today if you can—THANKS.

And lastly, please leave a comment to this post about anything you think is worth sharing, or worth discussing, on this topic. As I said, Tuesday we open the door—but I’d like to continue the conversation, if you can help me.