Home » Daily food & workouts » Since when are foods assigned a gender?

Since when are foods assigned a gender?

Good morning everyone! I’ve had a fairly uneventful morning so far. I did all cardio at the gym then ate the same exact breakfast as yesterday, so nothing exciting to report. With that said, I think I’ll jump right into my topic for today.

Gender and Food- What Gives?

The other day, Riley was channel surfing and came across a show on the Travel Channel called Manliest Restaurants. A crew goes around the country and showcases “manly” restaurants which, as I’m sure you can guess, is all about meat. Watching them show shot after shot of obscene amounts of meat and fried foods, I started to wonder: when did we assign foods as “man” foods and “woman” foods?

Jethro's BBQ

I know this isn’t a new topic (at least not according to my brief Google search), but it’s the first time I’ve really thought about how our society labels certain foods and what the implications are.

For years, we’ve watched commercials, magazines, TV shows, and basically every form of media tell us the following about how men and women eat. It looks a little something like this:

Men vs. women food

Look familiar? It should, because you probably see this stuff every day. I guess the big question on my mind is this: are these differences inherent to men and women or do we just follow along with what we “should” like? If you’re just now realizing that women eat 200x more yogurt than men do, watch this hilarious video about how the yogurt industry targets women.

I have an endless list of healthy foods I eat that Riley won’t: spaghetti squash, flax seed, chia seeds, Greek yogurt, almond milk. The list goes on and on. My big worry is that a lot of men turn down those foods because they see them as “chick food” just because they’re good for you.

Side note- I know we’ve all see the Bud Light quinoa commercial, but if you haven’t, you have to check it out. It’s funny, but it totally plays into what I’m talking about.

On one hand, I love to see women making an effort to choose healthier foods. On the other hand, though, I hate the perception that women are always dieting (or should be dieting). I refuse to let the media make me feel like I should never eat steak or that my chocolate should be eaten in secret, when no one’s watching.

I guess my final thought is that food should be just that: Food! Not girl food vs. guy food. If men felt like chia seed smoothies were a manly option, would they drink more of them? Would women choose more steak if they didn’t feel “guilty” about it? Maybe, maybe not, but we should all at least feel like the choice is ours to make. I’m gonna go have myself a yogurt now.

Do you see this pattern with your spouse/significant other/friends?

Why don’t men eat quiche?


12 thoughts on “Since when are foods assigned a gender?

  1. Nick will eat whatever I put in front of him salads and vegetarian meals including stuff with nutritional yeast but without fail when we do our market shopping and I ask what he wants for dinners this week his answer is always steak!

    Such an interesting topic and one I’ve not thought about before but is so true!

  2. Food should just be food — I couldn’t have put it better myself I honestly have no idea if we ARE genetically programmed to crave different things based on hormones and what not, or if society engrains it in us so firmly that it just becomes second nature. Definitely a tough call. I do know that most real life examples I come across fall into the typical stereotypes, but again… it might be largely based on cultural norms.

  3. I never thought about it like that! Ironically I think my boyfriend and Dad eat more salads than I ever will. They both try to get in a salad a day which I think is pretty impressive. And I converted my midwestern boyfriend to almond milk! But he will never give up his chocolate milk πŸ˜‰

  4. Hahaha, cracking up at the ‘quiche’ one for some reason! Everytime we go anywhere and I order a quiche my husband is always like “what is that???” it just seems so lady-like to order a quiche, I feel so mature when I eat it, haha

  5. Haha this is such a funny topic, because my boyfriend actually eats really similar to me (but I think that’s mostly because I cook…) but last night he walked in and I had salads on the table and he’s like “Mmm, salad… just what every man wants.” haha It IS weird how there are such strong stereotypes!

  6. I love that quinoa commercial too! so funny. And such a good topic to think about!! In our house, Scott eats or at least tries everything that I make for him – and he totally notices if I don’t sprinkle chia seeds on his smoothie!! πŸ™‚

  7. GREAT POST!!!! I actually have one scheduled for the coming week or so on this topic too- its so annoying dining out with female friends and when the waiter comes with our food, assumes the pizza is for me and the steak and veg is for her. Food should be food and not based on gender at all.

    …I love quiche. πŸ˜‰

  8. My one friend is soooooo against this way of thought – she can out-eat any man (and out-drink them too, but that’s another story!). I personally hate salad and my husband loves it, so at least I don’t follow that stereotype! But I do eat yogurt every day for lunch because it’s just so yummy!

  9. Pingback: Choosing Sleep | Kelly Runs for Food

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