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Dec 14, 2007 09:36 AM

There's healthy eating, and then there's the Hungry Girl blog. Have you ever seen it?

I love to eat and cook, but I'm also a big believer in doing so relatively healthfully, except for the occasional indulgence.

HOWEVER, some people take this concept too far. Have you ever visited It's a successful blog geared toward food-conscious women, and I was excited to hear about it because the author offers up frequent lower-calorie concoctions of favorite recipes, like fettuccine alfredo or french onion soup. However, this recipe ( for "better" lo mein drove me absolutely crazy.

I mean, Splenda instead of a touch of brown sugar? Blasphemy!

To be fair, Hungry Girl doesn't profess to be another Chow, but at the time the site's mission is to enable its readers to watch their figures AND enjoy food.

I say it fails. What do you think?

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  1. It's pro-ana propaganda, wrapped in a perky color scheme!! What fun. I haven't seen so many exclamation points since 5th grade!!! I immediately had to eat a piece of cherry pie to rid my mind of the whole stinkin' thing.

    6 Replies
    1. re: Hungry Celeste

      It is very much NOT a pro-ana propaganda site. Not at all. She follows Weight Watchers and many of her recipes list the Weight Watchers points. Clearly you have not spent much time on the site or you wouldn't make such an ignorant statement.

      While I do not share the HG love for Tofu-Shirataki noodles or artificial sweeteners, it is very easy to adjust their recipes to use stevia, agave syrup or raw sugar. She does promote several convenience foods, which many people may not like, but the site is incredibly helpful for people who do not mind that.

      1. re: Moriaelini

        Ok, I'll reveal my own innate cluelessness: What is "Pro-ana"?

          1. re: mcf

            Oh. My. Lord. Really? There are people who encourage eating disorders? Well. I mean. Besides Vegans.

            1. re: jmckee

              Look up the message boards. Sick and sad.

      2. I like that she reviews new products that I would not necessarily want to waste the money to try and then end up hating it, but I am also not a fan of over-processed 'fake' foods either - which is 95% of the products that she talks about.

        Every once in a while there is a product that I would not have spotted in the grocery store (I am like a horse with blinders on when I am in a hurry) like when Fiber One came out with their vanilla-y flake cereal. She reviewed it, I thought it would be worth checking out and it turns out I like it.

        I say take it for what it is...a place to learn about new lo-cal foods that are coming on the market and don't bother with any of the recipes.

        3 Replies
        1. re: sparkalina

          True enough, sparkalina; I have sometimes found the product reviews to be helpful.

          I think the site taught me something important about my food philosophy: I'm a moderate when it comes to calories and healthy eating. For instance, I cook with olive oil instead of butter, but also instead of Pam.

          1. re: sparkalina

            Sadly she is all about the processed short cuts. Almost like the Sandra Lee of healthy eating. My best friend and I both have done WW but I try to limit processed foods as much as possible. My friend gave me a HG cookbook for my birthday and after a few year it made its way onto the yard sale pile. I hated to do it but it was taking up valuable space for my other cookbooks.

            1. re: melpy

              Funny thing - I did WW about 2 years ago- and the group's teacher was "all about Hungry Girl"- her words. Suggested lots of HG recipes for desserts. I'll give her credit for attributing the recipes, but never made any. Thought the emphasis on dessert recipes was counter productive, it wasn't the only thing that the well nourished WW members had been eating, after all.

          2. These recipes looked good - Fried Zucchini, No Noodle Lasagna, Fried Cheese, Oreo Invasion. I am on South Beach right now and very "hungry" for ideas. Hee Hee.

            If it's a tablespoon or something, I will usually use the real thing - brown sugar for example. But, if it's a feature - pasta or lots of white flour - I will try to sub it out.

            I try to be very good most of the time, so I can be bad when I want.

            1. I don't know about failing...from what I've heard, it's pretttttttty popular.

              1. I don't think the product reviews and/or her recipes have anything to do with healthy eating - the truckloads of preservatives in the products she mentions are astounding.

                My .02 cents: this is a Web site for those who want to lose weight, but are not ready to give up the habits that led to their weight gain in the first place (hence, the need for shortcuts) and an indirect advertising vehicle for the food industry that has already discovered and is exploiting this niche (of the low-cal, sugar-free, fat-free, etc. etc.).

                I mean, wouldn't Starbucks want to appeal to the calorie-conscious? Any marketing person could tell you that 'word-of-mouth' is a lot more effective than ten flashy ads. As far as I'm concerned, this is just yet another advertising venue that is cheap and, sadly, has caught up with a lot of people....

                Who owns the site anyway? I've seen the name mentioned in the Yahoo sites. Any connection?