Why ED Recoverers Should Not Strive To Be HLBs + Cranberry Chocolate Chip Protein Cake

7 Dec

Tomorrow is my PE exam.

After being put through the practical exam…

  • sit-ups test
  • push-ups test
  • vertical impulsion test
  • Beep test (Nightmare. Pure. Nightmare.)
  • 6km practical exam (at -5.0C. I almost chocked on my mucus and was never as glad to see a Kleenex box in my life by the end of the run)

…I now have to study the theory for the theoretical exam. All of which I will forget as soon as it’ll be done.

Something that I found interesting was the definition of health and it’s five dimensions (S.P.E.M.S). It made me think of ED recoverers who consider themselves to be a healthy living blogger, or try to be one of them. Here are the 5 dimensions of health, and why I think ED recovers should not/can not be healthy living bloggers.

1) Social Health: ”the ability to develop and maintain meaningful interpersonal relationships, as well as, to adapt to different social situations.”

You cannot achieve this if you have a panic reaction to the words ”eating out”. And yes, it is still a panic reaction if you are trying to change the McDonald’s to the Vegan Cafe, or if you order a 20$ green salad sans dressing, or worse, if you bring your own food.

By calling yourself a Healthy living blogger and posting that you brought your own whole-grain sandwich to a friend’s party because ”white carbs give you a sugar crash/whatever reason your eating-disordered self has came up with”, you might actually be giving disordered thoughts to your readers.

2) Physical Health: ‘‘the optimal functioning of the body’s interconnected physiological systems, such as the respiratory, the cardiovascular, and the immune and endocrine systems.”

Whether you are overweight or underweight, if you are not doing anything about it and haven’t made an effort, (because there ARE people who are healthy even though they are under/overweight), you are not healthy. And no, if you HAVE to run 8-10miles a day so you don’t get crazy, you’re not naturally skinny.

Plus, even is you are physically healthy, you might not be healthy. Physical health is just one dimension out of the 5 (sometimes 6 but only 5 will be in my exam, so we’ll leave it out). Remember, weight restoration does not mean you’re mentally cured.

3) Emotional Health: ”expressing emotions in an appropriate fashion and at an appropriate time. This included qualities such as self-esteem, self-confidence, self-efficacy, optimism, trust, love, and friendship.”

Well, eating disorders comes hand to hand with the lack of most (if not all) the qualities above. It goes better as we progress with recovery, but still.

4) Mental Health: ”the ability to think critically, find solutions, and learn; the ability to grow from experience.”

If you get triggered by Seventeen Magazine who put ultra-skinny Emo-looking raccoon-eyed Taylor Momsen on the cover page and interviewed her about her weight/diet/body, then don’t call yourself a healthy living blogger.

If you get triggered because someone told you looked healthier and you took it as if they said you were fat, then don’t call yourself a healthy living blogger.

The world is full of triggers. You need to grow a thicker skin and be able to rationalize if you want to get through it. Suck it up, grow up.

5) Spiritual Health: ”developing faith in something or someone else beyond yourself; a guiding sense of meaning or value in life. It may involve a belief in a supreme being or a specified way of living as prescribed by a particular religion.”

This one I must admit I have no idea what it means. I’m not into religious stuffs. If there’s a question about this on the exam, I’m screwed.

I think the reason why they want to be a ”healthy living blogger”, is because they want a label. A lot of people have trouble giving up their ED, because they are scared of losing their identities. Without ED, they think they are nothing. They need that label to define who they are. Of course, this is not true, but hey, easier said than done.

By jumping on the Recovery wagon, they are giving up their label (Anorexic, Bulimic, etc).  Who are they, then? They feel lost, they need another label.

So they try to be Healthy Living Blogger, or more precisely, the most inspirational personality among the ED Recovery Community. Of course, I noticed that this often translates to the blogger who… :

  • posts the most recipes with the ”safest” ingredients
  • posts pictures of oatmeal topped with egg whites/sugar-free jam/craisins/”naner”/”strawbzzzz” (at this point you don’t even see the oats)
  • posts pictures of him/her kissing jars of nut butters
  • posts his/her workout or training schedule
  • posts pictures of his/her groceries consisting of 43 Larabars, 23 boxes of PB Puffins cereals/Kashi Go Lean cereal, 24 different squashes (I know how a box of cereal looks like, I’ve been to a grocery store before)
  • leaves the most ass-kissing comments on every healthy-living blogs (”OMG that bowl of oatmeal looks soooo yummiiii!! Chocolate + Spinach + PB? Yes please!! I need to try that ASAP!! :D”)

Basically, the anorexia competition is replaced by the competition between who eats the healthiest, who exercises the most, who has the most fit body, who has the most perfect recovery, who has the most popular blog.

This leads to stress, orthorexia, binge eating, exercise compulsion, etc.

Pretty far from ”healthy living”.


So I have another protein cake recipe. I know, again. Thing is, I usually just use other people’s recipes, and the one I came with by myself are all protein powder based.

Cranberry Chocolate Chip Protein Cake

  • 3 extra-large (120g) egg whites
  • 90g canned pumpkin
  • 15og strawberry or cranberry or vanilla yogurt (I like strawberry the best)
  • 40g Vanilla Whey Protein powder
  • 20g whole wheat flour
  • 30g coconut flour
  • 4 packets of sweetener (1 packet = 2tsp of sugar)
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • Chocolate chips (or  use chunks, like me)
  • Chopped cranberries* (100g?) (you can use other type of berries: strawberries take a longer time to cook)
  • Water, if necessary
  1. Preheat oven to 375.  Spray a bundt pan with cooking spray or better, use a silicone pan.
  2. Beat the egg white on high speed until foamy. Add the pumpkin and yogurt and beat until well mixed.
  3. Mix the dry ingredients together and add it to the wet mixture with a spatula. Add 1-2 tbsp of water if you feel the batter is too thick
  4. Add cranberries and chocolate chips
  5. Bake for 27-30min, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  6. Chill before serving.

*microwave half of them with sweetener for 30sec if you want

You can scale down the recipe to 1/2, or even 3/4. I’ve tried that and it works well (but adjust cooking time). You can use any other type of pan, but of course consider the cooking time. For muffins, check after 20min.

11 Responses to “Why ED Recoverers Should Not Strive To Be HLBs + Cranberry Chocolate Chip Protein Cake”

  1. Anne December 7, 2011 at 1:19 am #

    I think you are interpreting the Spiritual Health aspect accurately. I think it has to do with being able to tame one’s egotistical/selfish nature and to help one realize that there are bigger, more important things in the world.

    By the way, I’m not religious by any means. I’m a shame-free atheist 🙂

    • asianbitch December 7, 2011 at 9:18 am #

      I immediately thought of a certain big blogger who doesn’t even trust her own employees…ya know, they she has such a BIG business.

      ETA: The definitions are from the book. I don’t write that well.

  2. Lindsey @ Happy or Hungry December 8, 2011 at 10:12 pm #

    I have never had an ED, but I think you are right about the healthy living blogger label. For me though, it was the easiest label to slide under when starting my blog. I guess because those were the only blogs I read? I figured I could just write about my diets and workouts, easy peasy. But then I started to discover how disordered the HLB community was and meh…it wasn’t as fun for me anymore. I didn’t want to get roped into that.
    But yeah, just because a blogger posts their food and workouts does NOT mean they are a healthy living blogger.

    And ohhhhh man. The beep test. I am so glad I never have to take that again.

    • asianbitch December 8, 2011 at 11:19 pm #

      I thought I was going to die. My legs are so short, so since the pace goes faster and faster, I had to swing my arms like crazy and extend my legs to 180 degree. I don’t know if I stopped because I was deadly embarrassed of how I looked, or because I was dying. Both, I think.

      I prefer the Cookie Club Member blogger label than the HLB label. Much more VIP.

  3. Mitri December 9, 2011 at 12:31 am #

    Pretty much summed up why I stopped food blogging. I never thought of myself as a “healthy living blog,” more like a “I make fun of myself and try to get reactions about oatmeal.” But I am not an example of someone who has a healthy relationship with food, fitness, and body. I mean, I’ve gotten a lot better, but that’s only because I STOPPED reading HLBs and started watching how my family, boyfriend, and friends eat and how they don’t exercise 30498324 times a day. Even still, I’d never consider myself to be a role model of healthy living for others. In this acknowledgment, I am becoming healthier. 😉 Fun post.

    • asianbitch December 9, 2011 at 5:24 pm #

      Same here.
      It kills me when the commenters are like ”NooooOOOooo, stay!!! We need you!! Don’t stop blogging :(!!! :'(”
      Yeah, right. You mean you need the workouts and the low-cal recipes? Let that person live her life, dammit.
      Blogging is such a waste of time.


  4. Eden December 10, 2011 at 1:08 am #

    You probably know my thoughts about HLBs an EDs. 😉

    And you know I love you, but I will never get on board on using protein powder in baked goods. Aside the fact that I eat plenty of meat so I never find the need to buy protein powder, I think protein powder in general is chalk. 😉

    ok, I’ve abused “;)” way too much in this comment.

  5. Char @ www.charskitchen.ca December 11, 2011 at 3:26 pm #

    I’ve never baked with protein, but the texture on your cake looks really good! I stopped using protein powders about 2 years ago, though. I know everyone is different, but I’d rather eat food 😛 I used to eat too much of that stuff.

    I know the quote you posted about spirituality talks about finding a higher power outside of yourself, but I had a hard time with that, too. My counselor wanted me to start working on my spiritual health once we’d gotten through most of the other stuff, but I explained all of my personal reasons for why I don’t believe I can look to a higher power “out there.” So instead, she gave a new concept to me: she told me to look inside. She said “what if you create your own spirituality? How you behave, treat others, the life you create, etc, what if THAT is your spirituality?” I loved it because it took the whole idea of religion/prayer/etc out of it. I know not everyone will agree, but it works for me.

    • asianbitch December 11, 2011 at 4:48 pm #

      That’s interesting! Be your own inspiration. I like that. 🙂

  6. Ameena December 13, 2011 at 12:24 pm #

    I rarely talk about what I eat/don’t eat (today’s post is an exception) and what exercise I do/don’t do because I hate to compare what other people are doing. That kind of stuff can drive you crazy! One size doesn’t fit all.


  1. Journey of a ED Recovery Blogger « Asian B*tch - January 6, 2012

    […] 8. Reach a healthy weight, think you are recovered and attempt to become a HLB (because you want a label) […]

C'mon, tell me what you think!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: