“Girl dinners,” a TikTok trend sweeping social media this summer, might sound like a fun night out with friends, but it’s actually a potentially dangerous dietary practice that’s raising concerns among doctors and nutritionists.
Under the hashtag #GirlDinners, some Gen Z women share photos of what they eat for dinner, with many of the “meals” falling drastically short in terms of calorie count or calorie content nutritional benefits.
Some of the richer ‘girls’ meals follow the charcuterie theme and include a selection of nuts, cheese, olives, cold cuts and bread or crackers.
However, others are far more limited.
“Girly meals” recently posted on TikTok include plain hamburger buns, custard-covered M&Ms, a jar of peanut butter, and fried pickles wrapped in cheese. One poster even shared a can of Coke Zero as their “dinner.”
While some of these options may have only been shared as a joke, some experts worry the trend could prompt some girls and women to adopt unhealthy or unhealthy products disturbed eating habits.
“While it may initially have been about whimsical or odd food combinations, recent examples of the online ‘girl dinner’ trend show only minimally nutritious or nonexistent ‘meals,'” said Tanya Freirich, a Registered Dietitian in Charlotte, NCin an interview with Fox News Digital.
“Unfortunately, it seems like the wonderful and health-promoting focus on body positivity in our media and society in recent years has been replaced by an unhealthy ‘the skinnier is better’ obsession,” added Freirich, who practices as a lupus nutritionist.
Experts worry that promoting low-calorie or low-nutrient dinners could lead to eating disorders in some women — especially if they already have an unhealthy diet relationship to food.
“Anorexia, an eating disorder associated with extreme restriction in food intake, is one mental disorder “The risk of death is five to six times higher compared to the general population,” Freirich warned.
“This is not a matter of laughter or a joke to be shared on social media.”
“There’s nothing wrong with using a seemingly random assortment of pantry ingredients — but a diet soda or a cup of ice cream doesn’t make a meal.”
“Glorifying and highlighting disordered eating habits as acceptable can only help normalize those habits,” she added.
Lindsay Allen, Registered Nutritionist and Owner of Back in Balance Nutrition, LLC, in Tampa Bay, Flasaid these trends are “painful to watch.”
She told Fox News Digital, “Young women are particularly vulnerable to the ill effects because they are still developing and need extra nourishment.”
“Vitamins, minerals, fatty acids, and protein, among others, are the key building blocks we need for robust health and achieving the best version of ourselves,” she added.
“It’s time to normalize eating real food.”
So what should a healthy “girl dinner” or “woman dinner” look like?
Freirich recommends a balanced meal in which the plate is 50% full of vegetables, 25% from a protein source (beans, lentils, chicken, fish, eggs, etc.) and 25% from carbohydrates (rice, potatoesnoodles, etc.).
“If you had one History of the Diet“It can be difficult to recognize your body’s hunger signals and not the ‘diet rules,’ but ideally you should eat when you’re hungry and stop when you’re full,” she said.
“There’s nothing wrong with using a seemingly random assortment of pantry ingredients, but a diet soda or a cup of ice cream doesn’t make a meal,” added Freirich.
“Food sustenance is a form of self-care and love.”