extra-ms-veggiesSo you read that headline and decided to click on this article, awesome! Before we move any further let’s get one thing straight, I’m a feminist, I’m a writer, but -I’m not a doctor!

As a feminist, I engage in feminist dialog with friends, I naturally view the world through a feminist lens and sometimes that leads to really interesting observations.

For instance, vegetables!

I come from a family of chefs. My twin sister is a professional chef and Thanksgiving is her time to shine. With all the food that comes with the holidays, also comes a conversation about what people eat and don’t eat.  

Picky eaters are one thing, but what you’re about to read will sound crazy: I’ve realized that men and women are eating very different things, and they are getting away with it because of their gender.

Okay, breathe! I just heard you yell at the computer. So, let’s unpack this a little more.

It all started a few years ago when I started dating my current boyfriend of 4 plus years; he’s an awesome guy, but he had some serious diet issues. He didn’t eat any vegetables!

4 years later, and I wouldn’t say my boyfriend’s a vegetable freak, but he does enjoy the occasional fruit and veggie. It’s a big improvement, but that aversion to anything green is a lot more common than I realized.

In talking to a few girlfriends in preparation for Thanksgiving we all started talking about what our significant others would and wouldn’t eat at the dinner table. One of the common denominator between all of us girls was that our boyfriends wouldn’t eat vegetables.

We’d never talked about the intricacies of what our boyfriend did and didn’t eat. It just never came up in the past. I recognize that not everyone can Vegetables Are Sexistbe a health nut, and I come from a wide variety of food friends, with a variety of tastes so this revelation shocked me.

Why are men getting away with not eating vegetables?

Let’s think about this, when a woman goes on a date one of the most common stereotypes is that she’s expected to order a salad. Why isn’t this a stereotype for male dating patterns? 

Furthermore, why is eating a salad a bad thing that only women should be forced to do? Don’t we ALL recognize that vegetables are great for you?

Additionally, when we talk about dieting and women’s health, to women the conversation is always about how many salads or vegetables they’re adding to their diet and with men it’s all about their intake of protein.

Outside of our gender, our bodies are essentially the same.

Why is it that we should cheat ourselves from something so good for us, like vegetables, because of our gender?

Perplexed by how odd this realization was, that somehow a healthy food like vegetables could be considered “womanly” to eat instead of just plain good for you, our SmartFem team took to Twitter.

We asked our viewers these questions:


Here’s the bottom line for me: Like I said I’m not a doctor, I don’t have all the answers, but I’m upset that for some bizarre reason we think it’s okay to de-value men’s health.

Really, as a feminist I’m equally upset at how men are affected by this stereotyped concept of vegetables as are women. Bottomline, it means that we don’t value a man’s health and a women’s health the same.

I’m still confused, and trying to understand this topic – so for now, Eat your veggies kids!

“I like the occasional fig salad at Carly’s.”   -Oren Simchy-Gross of Jewish Health Weekly Magazine

“I ate a whole salad after my girlfriend made me read this article, and I didn’t die! Hooray!”   -Anonymous Stereotypical Male