(Long) Weekend Reading, 9.1.14
September 1, 2014

Weekend Reading | The Full Helping

 In honor of the long weekend (and because my boyfriend and I found ourselves ensnared by a mini-marathon of The Americans last night), I’m posting Weekend Reading today. I hope you’ve been enjoying this Labor Day, and whether it’s a holiday for you or not, I hope that you’ve been having a wonderful Monday.

Produce On Parade - Blueberry Maple Baked Oatmeal - Healthier than a crisp, this adaptable blueberry oatmeal bake is flavored with sweet maple syrup and speckled with toasted walnuts

It’s about 90 degrees and humid here in NYC, but I’m still getting kinda excited for oatmeal season. Katie’s blueberry maple baked oatmeal looks like just the thing for a late summer, early fall transition breakfast.


Speaking of breakfast, you can put your peach harvest to good use with Melissa’s peach chia jam.


Alissa’s tomato bisque with avocado pesto cream looks like heaven in a bowl.


I have yet to try my hand at a vegan omelette. Solveig’s vegan omelette is making me think that it’s about time.


Ever since my kimchi bowl post for Food52 last week, I’ve been loving kimchi on and in everything and anything. What more perfect way to serve it than atop a bowl of of cold cucumber noodles? This recipe from Ali is a total winner.


1. Honestly? I tend to find cautionary words about slowing down and giving ourselves a rest and taking time to smell the roses pretty annoying. When everyone emailed around “The Busy Trap” two years ago, I felt no reaction at all, except perhaps a slight, contrarian urge to dig in my heels and go on a rant about how overrated idleness is. But this article, from neuroscientist Daniel Levitin (This is Your Brain on Music) is really interesting. Levitin and a colleague have done some work with the insular cortex (a part of the brain that is involved with consciousness and homeostasis) and the article details how daydreaming and other forms of rest can be biologically and neurologically restorative (not to mention creatively invigorating). I also like that Levitin mentions some of the implications of these findings on the medical profession (he cites the shocking statistic that preventable medical error is the third leading cause of death in the US, obviously implying that fatigue may be a common factor).

2. Wonderful article about community health workers and what they can do for our healthcare system.

3. 15 charming quotes, brought to us via The Kitchn, about my favorite beverage.

4. A thought-provoking article about whether or not individuals should have a right to have their medical records remain private after death. The article also contains some interesting thoughts about the boundaries that surround non-fiction writing and reporting, for reasons that are clear once you start reading.

5.. The doctor I worked with for the last two years sent me this article a few days ago. My precise response was “OMG. This is MY JAM!”

I’m a dork. What I meant was, coincidence of EDs and autoimmune disease (especially Inflammatory Bowel Diseases) is of tremendous personal interest to me. In my work as a nutritionist, and particularly when I worked with Dr. Chutkan, I was struck by how many women with ED histories seemed to also suffer from GI illness. To some extent the explanation was obvious: years of erratic eating patterns will ultimately compromise one’s colon strength (peristalsis) and can also work to upset the balance of gut flora, too. And IBS can also precede an ED, because the associated bloating can (and often does) create a great deal of body dysmorphia.

So, when it comes to IBS/bloating and EDs, there are some straightforward answers. But I’ve also been struck by how many of the female patients we saw who had IBD (Chrons/Colitis) also had ED histories. And I’ve also noted that a number of my nutrition clients with EDs have some sort of autoimmune condition, be it IBD, Hashimoto’s, celiac, or something else.

This new study, from the University of Helsinki, compared over 2,300 patients who received treatment at the Eating Disorder Unit of Helsinki University Central Hospital with general population controls. Subjects were matched for age and sex while data of 30 autoimmune diseases were tracked from the Hospital Discharge Register. Of the patients with eating disorders, 8.9 percent had been diagnosed with one or more autoimmune diseases (most prevalently Type 1 Diabetes and Chron’s Disease). Of control subjects, the number was 5.4 percent. And the autoimmune diseases were observed both before the reported onset of the ED, and at the end of treatment.

It’s hard to say what to make of this, but it’s exciting to me that research is being done in this complex space, with its overlap of psychology, lifestyle, immunity, and (in some of the cases) GI health.

Enjoy the reads. And!!! To everyone who enjoyed Emily’s caramel mocha bars yesterday, good news. Emily and her publisher have graciously agreed to share a copy of the book with a lucky CR reader. So you can now enter a giveaway on my post. Check it out!

On that note, have a great evening. And happy Vegan Mofo!


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  1. Peach Chia Jam?! Yes we have a bunch of Peaches…only problem is we can’t stop eating them:)

    Entering giveaway…now! Thanks girl:)

  2. Been a while since I visited the blog Gena and I must say it is looking so lovely – gorgeous & clean new design (it was already lovely too!)! Congrats on your cookbook and I hope life is good for you! I’ve had a little break from blogging the past few months and it’s good to poke around again and say hello. Hope you had a lovely summer! x

  3. That last article is very interesting, as I know from personal experience that it’s taken my body years to begin to recover digestion-wise from what I’ve put it through in the past. What I find annoying/puzzling is the amount of “healthy living” bloggers that all claim to have digestive issues and use that as a justification to restrict whole food groups when in actuality, it’s because they already restrict their food and overexercise, so when they deviate from the “safe foods” their systems obviously react. It takes a long time for your body to adjust, and I’m amazed how my digestive issues cleared up after letting myself heal a big (and going vegan and giving up soy.)

    Of course IBS and other issues are real–trust me, I know–but I also think people use them as a crutch at times instead of acknowledging their ED histories as a factor. I’m rambling, but another great post. And Happy Vegan Mofo!

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