Ilena Peng

Ilena Peng

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How eating disorder recovery plans aren’t accommodating of cultural foods

eating disorder

Trigger warning: This article discusses eating disorders.

The only food Lauren Kim really wanted to eat during her eating disorder was Korean food. Her relationship with the cuisine had been complex since she was 5 years old. Her fellow students’ comments on her lunches made her feel different, so she would ask her mother for peanut butter and jelly sandwiches instead of bulgogi. Years later, homesick at college and grappling with newly raised questions about race and identity, Korean food was all she wanted to eat.