The TikTok trend is taking over social media this summer as users brag about their "girl dinners."
Some have taken to using the hashtag #GirlDinners to present their feast for the night. No, it's not just a meet-up with your closest friends at your local restaurant. These so-called "dinners" lack calories and nutritional benefits, therefore encouraging disordered eating to viewers.
Most dinners on the hashtag are simply a spread of nuts, cheese, olives, and crackers. On the flip side, other dinners are piles of M&Ms, deep fried pickles, or just a Coke Zero.
While many users are joking for the sake of views, some experts are worried that this will encourage disordered eating. Tanya Freirich, a registered nutritionist tells Fox News, "While it may have started out as quirky or strange food combinations, recent examples of the 'girl dinner' trend online have been showing minimally nutritious or nonexistent 'meals.'"
Eating disorders impact 2.7% of teenage girls in their lifetime, and it is the second deadliest mental illness behind opioid addiction. In the United States, there are 10,200 deaths due to eating disorders each year — with one death every 52 minutes.
Some claim "girl dinner" is a new freedom, while others have published several think pieces arguing how it can be damaging. Regardless if it's a joke or a TikTok trend, the real facts of disordered eating should be taken seriously.
A balanced meal is the best dinner, suggest Freirich, with 50% vegetables, 25% protein, and 25% carbs.