Unrealistic Thin Chicks From TV and Cranberry Chili Fries

by Eden on December 29, 2011

Now, I know plenty of people that are thin and not too restrictive with their eating, but I feel like they need to show more “average” looking or hell, even “heavy” women as “foodies”. Is it so taboo to have a heavy, female lead with a love of food? Why only thin women who we know won’t touch that stuff in real life?
The following are some examples of characters that “eat-whatever-I-want-and-never-exercise-yet-never-gain-a-pound”.
Lorelei and Rory Gilmore, “Gilmore Girls”
  • 1/2 cup pinto or kidney beans (you can use any beans you like)
  • 1/4 cup cranberries (fresh or frozen is fine)
  • about 2 tablespoons of ketchup or tomato (I didn’t really measure, lets just say 2 generous “squirts” and if using tomato paste, I would add a tsp of brown sugar to sweeten it up)
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder (or a chili seasoning mix would be good too)
  •  salt and pepper to taste

1.In a microwave safe bowl, mix together cranberries, beans, ketchup, chili powder and water.

2.Cover with wax paper or a plate and microwave on high power until the cranberries pop (about 3-6 minuets depending on the strength of your microwave). Add salt/pepper to taste. Chili best served over fries (I had Trader Joe’s sweet potato fries on hand) but any carb underneath would be glorious.

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{ 34 comments… read them below or add one }

Ameena December 30, 2011 at 1:00 am

Prior to having Maya I used to be able to eat everything without gaining an ounce. And I used to eat everything – ice cream for breakfast, pizza and chicken wings for lunch, etc.! I don’t count calories or anything now but I know that my metabolism isn’t the same as it used to be. So even though these actresses are constantly eating they just may be blessed with my old metabolism…

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Cameo December 30, 2011 at 3:55 am

I think this brings up an interesting point! One that I might make deeper than you intended…or maybe you DID intend it to get deep…

This is an example of the vast dichotomy that is becoming prevalent in the US. For every amount of excess there is an equal and opposite level of lacking. Add to that the fact that food companies are BIG MONEY and they pay TV shows to place their food in the episode. Sometimes it’s blatant, other times, not so much. Sometimes they are shown eating a generic brand, but the following commercial will be for the same food only branded. So, a lot of it comes down to marketing and subliminal advertising. And creating want in the audience. What girl doesn’t want to gorge and still be pin thin. (OK, not all girls…but many!)

Add to this the ever pressing desire of 2/3 of our population to lose weight and be thin but yet they are constantly being shown images of food and having food advertised at them in a very aggressive manner, it’s hard to resist. So, people stay fat. They watch skinny actresses gorge on food they dream of being “allowed” to consume and then say, “F it” I have nothing else to live for…the economy is in the shitter and we are all going to hell with the future of our government, so I might as well eat” Then they pay for even more crap food disguised as “health food” so they can counteract the effects. It’s a catch-22.

That’s my hippie conspiracy theory!

I also always got annoyed at SATC. I mean, the lady looks like a barre method juice head. Not a slice of pizza has ever actually manifested itself into her belly. Maybe she has a fast metabolism. But you are right in pointing out that this model of skinny actresses being huge pigs does not iron out in the real world.

Another side of this is how unfair the casting couch is. We as a populace have agreed that we want to watch skinny, beautiful people on the screen, not normal looking ones. So we continue to cast models to play average Janes.

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Eden December 30, 2011 at 8:46 am

What REALLY pisses me off is that they always have to have an ultra skinny girl be all “foodie” and shit. Its like having someone curvey and normal looking liking food so much is taboo! Not the whole world is blessed with a metabolism of a 10 year old!

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Alex December 30, 2011 at 4:14 am

Haha I hated Gilmore Girls all through my undergrad degree, but then my sister bought all the DVDs and somehow it snuck its way into my life. Now it’s thoroughly a guilty pleasure of mine, but the fact that they only ever eat crap and yet maintain perfectly trim waists throughout every season REALLY annoys me. Gotta love it for its ultimate cheesy charm though.

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Eden December 30, 2011 at 8:46 am

I think I loved to hate them. It was such a lame show but I watched anyway… sigh

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Faith @ For the Health of It December 30, 2011 at 5:48 am

I was always thinking the same thing about the Gilmores! My rationalization was that they had to walk around stars hollow all the time so that burned off the burgers and fries. Although, I have to say, I’d rather see tv characters with healthy appetites like theirs (even if they are unrealistically skinny) than characters that are setting examples of women not eating/eating nothing but salads.

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Missy December 30, 2011 at 8:17 am

I wonder how much of that food s really eaten or if some of it are substitutes. Like in Splash, Darryl Hannah is a vegetarian and they used leeks and other veggies in the lobster shell so she could eat it (but still made her sick from what I read since it was in a real lobster shell). Anyway, I just think they either fake it or that’s all they ate that day.
The cast of Friends always seemed to eat “junk” food a good bit. I can’t think of any others as I don’t really watch many sitcoms or movies.

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Eden December 30, 2011 at 8:48 am

the fact that friends made fun of monica being “fat” always pissed me off. why did monica have to get skinny?! bring back fat monica!

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janetha December 30, 2011 at 9:18 am

Mmm. That recipe looks and sounds really flipping good. I don’t know who the majority of these actresses are since I am TV challenged….

<3

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Eden December 30, 2011 at 9:27 am

It really IS flipping good. Cranberries just work with chili. I don’t know why I never thought of it before!

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lindsay December 30, 2011 at 9:45 am

You should try it with prunes. I bet you could create some major backfire… (enter fart face)

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Jolene (www.everydayfoodie.ca) December 30, 2011 at 9:32 am

My mom has always been like that. She struggled to keep on weight when she was 98 pounds. She ate constantly! My sister is the same way. She has to actively TRY to gain weight, and rarely succeeds. She just can’t eat enough.

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lindsay December 30, 2011 at 9:41 am

ha, i remember will and grace! Gosh i lover her. Remember Dharma and Greg? That was another skinny chick. Though she as hippie.

Love this recipe. We are a fan of beans these days…cheap colon cleanse for the new year.
😉

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StoriesAndSweetPotatoes December 30, 2011 at 10:11 am

I always think about that in TV shows, how disproportionate the actors are to what their characters are “eating”. Sometimes I want to tell myself “See they can eat that and they’re fine.” but I know TV is just a lie. Sigh.
I WANT your fries.

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Hayley December 30, 2011 at 10:30 am

In ed treatment, I was always told that people have a natural set point weight, and its a weight that you don’t need to watch what you eat or diet to control it. Some people are naturally thin and some people are naturally “overweight”. I think everyone can eat some junk food and not gain weight from where they naturally are…but yeah, it’s unrealistic that they can eat only junk food all the time in huge amounts and it not have any effect. Yes, some people have a fast metabolism, but it’s a very small percent of the population, and even for those people their metabolisms often slow down as they age.

I think maybe the issue is not so much with a normal or overweight person being portrayed as a foodie (if they are overweight, that might be a little stereotypical itself…like, anyone who loves food is automatically going to be overweight)..but I think there should definitely be more normal/overweight people on TV in general. I think people are influenced by what they see on tv, and when such a small percentage of the population is naturally thin like those actresses, it distorts our views and gives us unrealistic expectations of what our bodies should look like.

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Eden December 30, 2011 at 2:35 pm

I’m not saying its not ok to have skinny women eat like a football team, but ever notice they’ll never have a heavier woman eat like that? And yes, I really would just wish they’d have normal women and maybe even portray women that at least ADMIT to dieting.

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Char @ www.charskitchen.ca December 30, 2011 at 11:45 am

First, I really want those fries.

And second, thank you! I think these shows offer unrealistic views to those who watch them. Women who have to watch what they eat and exercise might feel frustrated because these characters don’t seem to need to. (Might I point out the girls from The OC? Ridiculously skinny and only ate pancakes and cheeseburgers. Not so true in real life.) I also think it teaches men that it’s normal for women to be that slim without any effort. So not true (for most of us). And I think sometimes it’s easy to forget that these are just TV shows, and none of their actions are

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Char @ www.charskitchen.ca December 30, 2011 at 11:46 am

…damn. I hit the send button 😛

anyway, none of their actions as characters are representative of who they actually are as people.

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Eden December 30, 2011 at 2:36 pm

I wish they’d just be more honest. Maybe make a show about a woman who actually does restrict what she eats and yet is miserable for doing so.

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Sara December 30, 2011 at 12:35 pm

I also totally agree about The Gilmore Girls…in that the actors were horrible. Seriously. I couldn’t stand it.

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Klh December 30, 2011 at 12:46 pm

Simple recipe I need to try!

I often think this about characters on my favorite shows and then I just think well they’re all prob bulimic 😉

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Eden December 30, 2011 at 2:37 pm

yes and probably sneaking laxatives/diet pills

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melissanibbles December 30, 2011 at 3:12 pm

Um…every tv show ever. Skinny actresses eating a lot on tv isn’t new. Mary Tyler Moore started it. Blame her.

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Eden December 30, 2011 at 3:14 pm

This is why my favorite tv female character from TV is Meg Griffin. Followed by Lisa Simpson.

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Daniela December 30, 2011 at 4:32 pm

OMG THAT LOOKS SO GOODDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDD

PS Shabbat Shalom

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Sarah December 30, 2011 at 6:17 pm

This irritates me as well, mainly because in spite of my rational brain, the irrational part of me wonders why I can’t eat like that and I am still heavier than those women.

What’s particularly interesting about the fetish around beautiful women who eat is that there are also women like Nigella, who I would venture to guess far more men find sexy than the women you mention in the post, who are ‘curvy’ and obviously love food, but also scream ‘sex’! Nigella’s shows are so amazingly sexualised I can’t stop laughing sometimes. The other night we watched an episode where she made a bacon and egg salad, then at the end they show her getting up in the middle of the night eating a bacon and egg butty (sandwich) whilst standing at the fridge. On one hand it was ridiculous, but on the other hand FAR more believable than any of the food habits of the characters you listed.

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Mary Legare Whaley December 30, 2011 at 7:16 pm

Eden. You are SO right. I’ve always thought the same thing, and why does everyone give the skinny girls who eat everything a hard time when they never gain a pound? I’d be like: “Here’s a Palzone. I’ll time you.” When I see any attractive, healthy looking, or extremely thin woman, on TV or in a movie eating something that is, by all means, a “no-no” (i.e.a huge slice of greasy pizza, Chinese food, tacos, Big Macs) I’m always like: “No. They are eating one bite. They might allow it to digest…but I wouldn’t be surprised if it comes back up in the dressing room.” That, or they won’t eat again the rest of the day. I LOVED Will and Grace. Grace was hilarious. Did you see the episode where she discovered that noodle house? She ordered some noodles that were super hot and spilled them everywhere, asked for a refund, they refused, she boycotted, but Karen and Jack kept going back secretly? Then she gave in and went back for more noodles. Too funny. Although, there was one episode where Will and Grace were at the gym, and Jack was “too gay” for Will, or something. Definitely the only fitness episode. It was a good one though!

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Eden December 30, 2011 at 9:20 pm

I miss good sitcoms. TV sucks these days.

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Reader December 31, 2011 at 6:26 am

when i read the title of your post the first person i thought of was Grace on will and Grace…they always played that up.

never saw gilmore girls.

i remember on “Frasier” when Daphne became pregnant they didn’t write it into the show but they made it a running theme where she was having emotional issues and was eating a lot and getting fatter and fatter…so that suggested realism i guess…

i always think about on the tv show…i remember watching old 90210 episodes where they’d all be all their hangout with fries and hamburgers and the girls wouldn’t take a bite…always made me wonder about food on the set written in the show…

on Growing Pains, Tracy Gold was anorexic and on the last show they had a pizza party for the last scene and she wouldn’t eat it …and the producers were prodding her to eat a few bites bcuz it looked odd..but she was like…”my god, they don’t get it”…

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Lindsay @ Lindsay's List December 31, 2011 at 7:26 am

Is it really bad that I liked (and still like) the Gilmore Girls? And Sex and the City. Both are guilty pleasures…and now that you mention it, it might be because they’re always eating and not getting fat. and that’s like a fantasy of mine.

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Cammy January 3, 2012 at 4:47 pm

Super late to this post because I’ve been behind on blogs over the holidays. But just wanted to chime in because I was always irked that it seems like part of the mandatory formula for a Sex & the City episode to have a bunch of skinny women sitting around consuming thousands of calories each while talking about sex and not gaining weight. Kinda annoying after a while. And I agree with the other ones you listed as well. No wonder Americans have skewed views of/relationships with food and their bodies.

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Molly F. January 3, 2012 at 9:22 pm

The eating habits on Gilmore Girls always annoyed me too! (among other things on that show.) Though they did drink a lot of coffee, so maybe that was some kind of appetite suppressant. Even though Melissa McCarthy/Sookie was a realistically-sized woman who was supposed to be such a foodie, they rarely showed her eating all the delicious things she cooked! Like that would be offensive or something?

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RoseRunner January 4, 2012 at 9:53 pm

I’m surely not the first commenter to say this, but of course it can be realistic. I’m totally “the closer” — I work at a stressful desk jar and I dip into the candy jar every single day. Somedays, the equivalent of 3 bars of candy. I’m pretty darn thin, probably comparable to Ms. Sedgwick. Although I don’t know if her character runs as much as I do…

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Ellen February 21, 2012 at 1:18 am

Your chili blew my stinkin’ mind. I used chickpeas for the beans and the butternut squash I had on hand for the fries. SO awesome.

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