Christina Passarella, Leticia Sanchez, Lisa Hitch, Taylor Drost, Timeka Toussaint

Photo by Free To Use Sounds on Unsplash

New York City is often seen as one of the wealthiest cities in the United States. However, the city also displays huge social injustices and inequalities, in particular when it comes to health.

Diet, as one important factor for a healthy weight, couldn’t be more diverse in the city. On the one hand side, you can find the most exotic and most expensive foods from all over the world: golden bagels, $1,000 pizza, and a martini worth $10,000 (Ripley, 2016). But not every resident can benefit from the vast diversity and richness of the food offers in the city.


Why your choice of language matters

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August 1st is International Childfree Day. It may seem like one of those made-up holidays that get added to calendars purely for the benefit of marketing companies, but for me, it’s an important day and I celebrate it as such.

Unlike those who celebrate Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, and Grandparents Day, it’s unlikely that I’ll ever get texts of well-wishes, cards, or obligatory greetings from strangers at the grocery checkout. Nobody will celebrate my decision not to reproduce. No one will praise me for being “selfless” in my choices (quite the opposite, in fact). …

Please consider choosing another hill to die on

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I began following politics closely during the 2000 election. I was 13 and precocious and in Catholic school, where I clearly didn’t belong and where we were made to watch each presidential debate.

I’ll be honest, I found this very boring and tedious at first. However, I enjoy any problem with a clear right and wrong answer, and by the second debate it was very clear to me that there was a right and a wrong answer here. …

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Finding things to love about life in a pandemic

A few nights ago I was feeling particularly down about, you know, this whole global pandemic, national social distancing, economic collapse thing. I lamented to my partner that this felt oddly like grief, like the way it feels to mourn a loved one. It feels like I’ve not only lost all the things I most loved about my life but like I’m also losing time.

I kept thinking about this period as weeks and months of my life I’ll never get back. I celebrated a birthday a few weeks in, and it made me really consider that the older I…

Life After Diets

TL;DR: If gaining a few pounds is the worst thing that happens to you in the coming months, consider yourself so lucky

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Last week, when my boss explained our new work from home policy, and it became clear that I’d be spending a lot of time in my Brooklyn railroad apartment, I had a brief moment of panic that was completely unrelated to any real-life problems my family or I would soon be facing. It was divorced from the very reality of a global pandemic, the then-looming financial crisis, and the probability of our city, or even country, going into lock-down.

No, for that one moment, I internally freaked out, instead, at the idea of being home for days or weeks with…

Life After Diets

Photo by Josh Gordon on Unsplash

Training for and running long-distance races like half marathons, marathons, and ultra-marathons, is inherently challenging. It can be stressful, expensive, frustrating, and painful. Shin splints, missing toenails, sore muscles, and smelly workout gear are just part of the deal.

But, as runners, we sign up for races, pay high entry fees, and buy running shoes and special socks and contraptions for carrying water and fuel because we love it. Not because we might win (few ever do). Not because of the race photos we’ll post on Instagram (have you actually seen what runners look like in those photos?). Not even…

Life After Diets

The insidiousness of the wellness re-brand

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I did my first round of Weight Watchers (now WW) the summer after I graduated high school, and by the end of that year, I had developed a full-blown eating disorder. Losing weight had been fairly simple when it was summer, and I was only working part-time and not going to school and had ample free time to dedicate to very basic meal planning and exercise routines in my living room.

It’s also so much easier when you’re only 18 and otherwise healthy, but that’s neither here nor there.

For the first few weeks of college, it was somehow even…

Life After Diets

When you have a history of disordered eating

Photo by Quino Al on Unsplash

Every November, for most of my life, I’ve spent the first Sunday of the month watching the runners of the New York City marathon as they breeze through my Brooklyn neighborhood. It’s early in the race, just a few miles past the Staten Island starting line, and everyone is still fresh and smiling and waving to the on-lookers.

It’s an incredible event to witness. There’s live music and cheering crowds and neighborhood kids doling out water and snacks and high fives. …

Life After Diets

How to stop sabotaging your health goals

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The absolute worst health habit I engage in these days is the occasional lapse in judgment that leads me into the comments section of articles I read online. Frequently, this ends with me angrily venting to my partner, but from time to time I get a little inspiration.

Recently, in an article about a study of different types of exercise and their impact on obesity rates, someone left a comment stating that eating healthy and exercising is a luxury that most people cannot afford. …

Life After Diets

Why adding, not eliminating, food is key to a healthy diet

Slices of homemade pizza topped with tomatoes, vegetables, and leafy greens.
Slices of homemade pizza topped with tomatoes, vegetables, and leafy greens.
Photo by sheri silver on Unsplash

45 Million.

That’s the number of people in the United States who go on a diet each year.

$33 Billion.

That’s the amount of money Americans spend each year on weight loss products and services.


That’s the proportion of adults in the United States that are overweight or obese by current medical standards.

1 in 6.

That’s the number of Americans who have ever been overweight or obese, lost weight and maintained their weight loss.

How can so many people spend so much time and money on this single goal with so little to show for it?

Most of…

Christina Passarella

Follow along on my quest to make diet culture another millennial casualty. Find me on Insta @life_after_diets

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