Take the cannoli

I'm sitting in a New York City hotel room watching a Fred Astaire TV special right now. Fred was probably my first crush - all men since then have had to compete with my notion that true love meant you danced off in intuitive tandem from the first glance.

Beautiful people doing marvelous, joyful things. The question is: am I doing myself a damage watching this? Will it influence what I eat for breakfast today?

A study about gender differences related to eating and body image thinks it might.

"Eating in response to external cues rather than internal hunger signals is one of the first steps involved in the development of disordered eating, be it anorexia, bulimia or compulsive eating. Our commercial mass media are filled with such external cues. "

And another study examines the question of whether our genes make some of us more resilient to the cues and world around us.

Also on the environmental issue, is some interesting stuff about city living and bulimia - though teasing out cause and effect and other issues seems exhausting.

And in the environment question we must also consider comorbid illness, like bipolar. I am optimistic that as we get better measures of mental illnesses of all types we will also get a better handle on whether these illnesses trigger or exacerbate eating disorders.

So, I'm going to turn Fred off and go to breakfast. With this observation about beautiful people in 1958: they look like adults. They're slim, but they have the secondary sexual characteristics of adults. They don't look like they are stuck in permanent, painful, airless puberty. They look like they eat eggs and bacon for breakfast and then attack the day with gusto.

I'm off to do the same!


  1. Hear, hear, Laura! Self-regulation is the key to healthy eating.


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