“Guilt-Free” Food: What Is Our Responsibility to Readers?

On Writing Health & Science

From apples to zoodles, so-called “guilt-free” and “guiltless” foods still dominate food and women’s magazines, diet culture, and even handouts from doctors’ offices. What are the effects on readers when we add the connotation of guilt to food and how should we approach covering these topics as writers and editors? Learn how a nutritionist, magazine editor, online publication food editor, and a food writer navigate the ramifications of “guilt-free” language.

You can watch the recording of this session on our conference resource page, here.

Faith Durand is Editor of The Kitchn, the largest independent online food publication. Faith coauthored the James Beard Award-winning The Kitchn Cookbook, as well as two previous cookbooks. Faith serves on the board of IACP and lives in Columbus, Ohio.

Christy Harrison, MPH, RD, CDN is a registered dietitian nutritionist and certified intuitive eating counselor based in Brooklyn. She offers online courses and private coaching to help people make peace with food, and she hosts the popular Food Psych Podcast.

Jacklyn Monk is executive editor of Essence and InStyle and is in charge of making the trains run on time. She sets and enforces deadlines, oversees the research, copy, and production departments, and manages the budgets. Prior to joining Essence and InStyle, she was deputy managing editor of Real Simple and managing editor of VIBE.

Alex Van Buren is a New York City-based food and travel writer, editor, and digital strategist whose work has appeared in Gourmet, Bon Appétit, Travel + Leisure, Epicurious, MyRecipes, Salon, New York Magazine, and The Kitchn, along with other national publications.

Photo: Courtesy of Ryan Adams

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