Radical Queer Nutrition: Meet the Witch Who Wants to Help Heal Your Guts

Please note: I am a nutritional therapist and not a dietitian. While I am about as skeptical as they come, and always do a ton of independent research before accepting information, my work falls firmly in the “alternative” healthcare camp. There will always be conflicting information available about the topics I am writing about (because there is conflicting information about literally everything in the health world), but I promise to only present you with information and suggestions that I have seen consistently good results with in my clinical practice.

Over the next few months, I’ll be writing a weekly column about Radical Queer Nutrition, but before we get into specifics, this here is an introduction to me, Lark Malakai Grey, and to what it means to me to be a Radical Queer Nutritionist™ (this is not actually trademarked).

I have a certification in nutritional therapy from the Nutritional Therapy Association, and I own Transformative Wellness, a nutrition and life coaching practice through which, thanks to the internet, I work with clients all over the country. I specialize in autoimmune disorders and complicated gastrointestinal issues. I am also a tarot reader. I live with my partner and three adorable pit bulls named Jezebel, Rufio, and Inigo Montoya. I also have a betta fish named Rogelio de la Vega, and approximately 50 thousand house plants. I grow a lot of food. I love Buffy, Harry Potter, queer YA fantasy novels, and fiction podcasts. I have lots of tattoos. I’m a nonbinary trans human (they/them) who lives with an invisible disability (EDS) and a serious mental illness. I am a Pisces, Scorpio rising (I’ll allow you a moment here to shed a compassionate tear for me), a Gryffindor, and an INFJ.

I got interested in nutrition when my partner was dealing with severe Crohn’s disease and we had neither money nor insurance to treat it. I discovered that I liked nutrition and even better, was really good at it. My partner doesn’t have Crohn’s anymore, which is just the coolest! (According to his GI, my partner has “no evidence of Crohn’s disease.” I understand that many folks don’t consider this to be the same as not having it, but this is the language my partner is most comfortable with me using, and I think it is important to honor that. This is in no way a claim of having “cured” Crohn’s disease, as I note further down in the article.) I have also lived with/through so many health issues that I have personal experience with just about everything my clients come to me with, from eating disorders to adrenal fatigue to chronic gut issues. I am able to speak to them from a place of experience, not just education.

A lot of nutritionists believe a lot of shenanigans about the human body, and I wouldn’t ask you to trust or listen to me without some information about which specific shenanigans I subscribe to. (Tl;dr, I really can’t stand most folks in my field.)

Here is a list of things I do and don’t believe in:

I DON’T believe in homeopathy. Homeopathy is shenanigans . Every study shows that it works no better than placebo. That being said, placebo is a pretty great medicine! Our body’s ability to heal is pretty dependent on our beliefs about whether or not we can. I never tell my clients who are into homeopathy that they should stop taking it. And for those of you who are super mad at me right now, I say the same to you—go forth and get your placebo on. It’ll probably help.

I DO believe in vaccines. I believe that everyone who can be vaccinated should be vaccinated. I think it’s sinister to put anyone at risk of preventable diseases. And most of all, I believe that it’s absurd to make decisions based on a study that has been disproven multiple times. Vaccines don’t cause autism and risking your child’s life to avoid autism is super ableist and shitty.

I DO believe in crystals for healing. There’s no evidence to back this up, but I am a witch and witches love a crystal. I have literally told a client who asked point blank for my opinion on homeopathy that it was shenanigans and they should go buy some onyx to keep in their pocket instead. I always have crystals in my pockets. #SkepticalWitch

I DON’T believe that yoga or meditation will heal you. Like every disabled person, I have been told to do yoga so many times that it makes me want to throw things. As a person whose disability causes hypermobility (aka yoga makes my body fall apart), I take this suggestion as evidence that the suggester hates me. And as someone with anxiety, I consider meditation a form of torture.

(That being said, I totally recommend these things to my clients all the time. They are proven to help with pain and depression, so okay, I put them out there as options. However: 1) I recommend them with a ton of caveats about how it’s super okay if they don’t want to/can’t and I’m sorry for being another person bringing it up. 2) I recommend them only as co-therapies, because they reduce stress which reduces symptoms, 3) I always tell my clients that if trying to incorporate them causes stress they should stop, and 4) I usually include them only as part of a long list of potential stress reducers, including going outside, drawing, and “whatever it is that you like to do but don’t give yourself time for.” This shit is not going to magic away your symptoms. Everyone needs to stop saying it will.)

I DO believe in acupuncture, because it’s been proven to work.

I DON’T believe that nutrition can “cure” you. It can allow you to manage and put into remission ailments like Crohn’s, EDS, Fibromyalgia, etc without medication (if that’s what you want but it is SO OKAY if you take meds!), or help further reduce symptoms along with meds, but you have to do the things forever, you know? Nutrition can help get you back to health, but if you go back to your old ways your symptoms will come back.

I DON’T believe that it’s easy to start healing this way. It’s super hard to shift your diet around, to have to say “no” to things that are offered to you (even when you know the food will make you feel bad, this is still hard!), and to give up foods that you loved but turns out make you sick. What these changes are are different for every human, because everyone’s body is different. (No joke, a friend’s kid will turn completely white, vomit, and have a migraine for two days if she eats a piece of gum with blue #40 in it. Kiddo has to say no to every piece of food with artificial dye in it.) But I DO believe that it becomes easy. It becomes easy when you start feeling legit better, and then you “cheat” and have the cake* or whatever, and then you feel like shit. Once you know what better feels like, feeling better becomes way more enticing than cake. I had to give up dairy, and it was SO HARD—until the first time I ate it after quitting, when I realized that not only were my guts sad for days, but the sinus symptoms that used to be normal for me came back for a month! I so profoundly do not miss saturating three hankies a day that that’s all I have to think of in order to pass up pizza. No one wants that much snot. It’s not worth it.

(*I used cake as an example here because it is the food that I most often see my clients come in reporting a mental shift with: “I went to a birthday party and had some cake, and I felt such a big difference afterward! I don’t think I’ll do that again,” and not because there is anything wrong with eating cake! My official stance on cake is “all things in moderation unless they make you really sick.” And if cake DOES make you sick, I can totally help you find a cake recipe with ingredients that your body is fine with.)

I DO believe in psychiatric medication. The violence perpetrated on folks with mental illness by a lot of practitioners in my corner of the world fills me with rage. You are not weak if you take psych meds. You don’t just need to drink more water/do more yoga/eat more kale. Mental illness is complicated and difficult and there’s no simple fix for it. Do your meds make you feel better? Take them! I take mine.

I DO (also) believe in the gut-brain connection. Healing your gut can totally reduce (but not eradicate) the impact of mental illness. Also, not being in pain/discomfort all the time makes living a hell of a lot easier. So yes, take probiotics, drink bone broth, eat healthy food. And take your meds. Both.

I DON’T believe in weight as a litmus for health. I think it’s absurd that anyone would look at the outside of someone’s body to determine how “healthy” that person is, rather than their symptoms and habits. Your body is wonderful how it is, and my only goal as a healer is making your body a comfortable place to live. When clients come to me to lose weight, I straight up refuse to address their care plan from that angle. “If your body wants to lose weight, it will do so as you start getting healthy,” I tell them. Sometimes they don’t like hearing that. But for real dude, I am a healer! I am here to fix what’s wrong, not change the package.

I DO believe in trusting tangible evidence above all else. Sometimes (often?) the information out there just doesn’t work for making people feel better. That’s why folks seek out people like me. I trust results. I trust what people report. The reason there are so many conflicting studies is because studies often isolate things to a point where they don’t actually represent reality. So even when science says there isn’t evidence that something works, I trust what I see in my clients. And I’m really good at making people feel better.

Hopefully this is enough info for you to be able to gauge how much you trust me. Want more? Ask!

There are lots of different perspectives on nutrition and wellness; the one in this post is only of them and is not intended as a replacement for medical advice from your doctor or medical professional. It is not a deliberate departure from posts we’ve done on this topic in the past or reflective of posts we may do on this topic in the future. If you’re familiar with our work, you’ll know we’ve had authors who have advocated for practices this author does not advocate for (and vice versa), and we’ll continue to have that — no one post or series or author should ever be seen as Autostraddle’s official stance or set of beliefs on the topic of nutrition and wellness.

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Lark Malakai

Lark is a Radical Queer Healer™ who owns a nutritional therapy, life coaching, and tarot practice called Transformative Wellness. They are a Pisces, Scorpio rising, INFJ, and a Gryffindor. Their gender identity is Tattooed. Their favorite things include cuddling their dogs, saying no, going to therapy, and cultivating the perfect Spike-meets-Giles wardrobe.

Here are the two nicest things anyone has ever said to them:

1) “I am so glad you’re a witch!”—Lark’s partner

2) “I mean, you’re queer as fuck.”—Lark’s therapist

They would like to help you heal, if you’re interested in that!

Lark has written 1 article for us.


  1. “I have literally told a client who asked point blank for my opinion on homeopathy that it was shenanigans and they should go buy some onyx to keep in their pocket instead.”

    I love this sentence haha! I, too, am skeptical & yet witchy.

    Also, i’m definitely looking forward to this now, & i also would like to put in a tiny request to see all three pibbles, please. (And the betta, of course, but especially the pibbles bc oh my gOD their lil boof heads.)

    • Hello, fellow #skepticalwitch! I have so many grounding crystals in my pockets today as I attempt to not FREAK OUT about being published. I swear they’re helping.

      I will try to include pibble pics in a future article for you!

      • As the folk magic practitioners I’m descended from used to say “God helps those who help themselves” meaning you do the magic and take the medicine. I’ve always tried to incorporate this into my own practice.

  2. Very excited for this series. Hopefully it will have some content that will help with rheumatoid arthritis

  3. Really, really excited for this column!! This fits in with my goals for 2018 (cutting sugar, ugh) super well, thanks for sharing your knowledge with us!

  4. Fellow witchy chronically ill INFJ here! I am so excited for this column. In a world where so much health care (conventional and unconventional) is based on the premise that “if you don’t [do things one specific way] you’re doing it wrong,” your non-judgemental list of do’s and don’t’s is such a blessing <3

  5. This series looks absolutely fantastic, and I am so excited to try some of the recipes you have on your company’s website!

  6. Ah I’m so excited for this! As a fellow chronically ill queer living my life in pain and worry I’m so down for some healing via food. I also wanna see pibble pictures! :D Welcome to the family, Lark!

  7. I didn’t even realize how much I almost constantly beat myself up for “doing it wrong” or not being able to do/benefit from things that other people insist will help until JUST NOW.

  8. I really appreciate your list of beliefs that you do and do not hold. It’s been a while since I really sat down to think about what I do and do not believe these days. I’ve mellowed quite a bit since my teen years, and now seems like a good time to do a bit of re-evaluation. So thank you for that, and I look forward to this series!

  9. Really interested in this series as it fit in my goal of minimizing my carb intake(though not sure the difference between white carbs other carbs). Really like the fact you are upfront about your beliefs and clear what you are about. Thank you!

    • White carbs are refined carbs so things like white bread instead of brown. I think white potatoes also count, though I’ve seen people make exceptions for them if you leave the skins on and eat them in moderation.

      • Dumb question: does white rice count as a white carb? I know it’s a carb, but it’s not like it’s that heavily processed.

  10. Well this is cool and right up my alley! In the past 6 months or so I’ve had some health issues come up and have changed my diet around. I can’t wait to read this column! Also, therapy is awesome. I love going to therapy and talking about therapy.

  11. Hello, as a human with Crohn’s disease I would like to know how on earth your partner doesn’t have it anymore? This shit is written into my DNA (unfortunately)

    • Hello! I’m so sorry you’re dealing with Crohn’s, it’s just the worst.

      In answer to your question: the (very) short version is that the protocol I put him on halted the progress of the disease and got his symptoms under control, and then when the ACA kicked in he had surgery to remove all the permanent damage that had happened pre-diagnosis, and then by continuing the same protocol it never came back! It’s been four years and they’ve done all the imaging there is to try to find it, but it’s not there. His very conventional gastro is utterly baffled by it.

      • That is great that he’s been in remission for so long! I also had a partial bowel insurrection and enjoyed about a year of remission (typical), but I’ve heard of people who have been in remission for 20+ years (rare but great). I hope he stays symptom free, Crohn’s isn’t something I’d wish on anyone.

        Diet is very important, although I hope you understand why I’m wary of anyone who claims that they made my genetic disease completely disappear.

        • I would definitely never claim to be able to make it disappear. Like I said in the article, I definitely don’t think that nutrition can cure these things, but I do know that it can put folks in remission and help them stay that way, which is pretty exciting to me!

          • That’s a pretty big claim for something as under-researched and devestating as Crohn’s disease. And that’s coming from a professional chef and a witch. It seems to me like you didn’t think anyone would notice if you threw one experience with one misunderstood chronic illness into your CV. That is not queer radical witchcraft, that is capitalism in a pointy hat. Don’t use my illness for your personal brand.

          • “My partner doesn’t have Crohn’s anymore, which is just the coolest!”

            Lark, I’m excited for your column but you definitely aren’t clear about remission vs. cure in the above sentence. Those of us living with Crohn’s know it will always be with us, remission or flare, and to claim otherwise isn’t factual.

          • Yeah I did think it sounded like you were saying you’d cured it rather than induced remission which as someone whose close to a Crohns patient raise my eyebrows a bit. Its good you’ve clarified you meant remission.

          • Sven, I am so appreciative of that offer! I won’t be writing anything about specific ailments or illnesses, because the whole basis of what I do is that everyone’s body is different and needs different things to heal. I don’t have a one-size-fits-all approach to any diagnosis, and I don’t use a diagnosis as the foundation of anyone’s treatment plan.

            All my articles will be about things that are more or less universally helpful, even if you feel totally healthy :)

        • Hey folks, I appreciate your concern and will definitely be more careful with my language in the future. I thought that because I included a section about the fact that I don’t think nutrition can cure you, there wouldn’t be any confusion about what I meant in my intro, but I was clearly mistaken and I should have been more careful. I am not making light of the severity of Crohn’s disease in any way, or suggesting that it’s an easy thing to live with or control. When my partner was sick he was really fucking sick, and our lives were utter hell. That’s how I came to this work.

          Merissa, I really apologize if it feels like I am using that story to sell myself. His health is one of the accomplishments I am proudest of, and also the reason I have the job that I have. If I were to quote his GI doc I would have said, “my partner now has ‘no evidence of Crohn’s disease’, which is just the coolest,” which I guess just don’t roll off the tongue as well.

          I hope that you don’t think that I’m basing my claim of being able to help folks get into remission on my partner alone. A large amount of my case load is folks with autoimmune disorders, and I have a really good success rate with helping them get to a symptom-free place.

          • Thanks for this response, Lark. Clearly we are very sensitive to the language involved (personally I re-read every report from scopes and compare them to see changes in language, desperate to find positive results!)

            I’m really looking forward to your column and how it might help me and my crohns though actually I’m doing quite well these days :) hasn’t been long enough to use the R word but I’m hoping.

            If you do focus on Crohn’s or any other illness specifically, you could have a few “advisors” who are living with the condition read your work before you publish? I know things definitely are different talking face-to-face and knowing a person vs. reading and not being able to immediately ask what someone means by a comment about the condition. Just a thought!

  12. So excited! This was a really great intro, and I feel a lot of trust in what you’re going to write. Also, please will you share more information about quitting sugar? I am convinced it’s a good idea, but haven’t succeeded at actually doing it.

  13. Being a nutritionist and dietitian I’ll be following this series.

    I’d be interested to hear more about why you can’t really stand people in the field, assuming you mean people with proper credentials? In my experience, the vast majority of my colleagues have evidence-based opinions and there’s nothing we hate more than the spread of dangerous myths and misinformation by charlatans.

    It would also be useful to point out that “while only a dietitian can use the title “dietitian,” it’s important to understand that the term “nutritionist” itself is not protected. In regions where nutrition and dietetics are not licensed or regulated, anyone can call themselves a nutritionist, whether they’re qualified or not. If you’re going to work with someone who calls herself a nutritionist, be sure to check her credentials.” (via verywell.com)

    • I am so sorry if my comment about not being able to stand folks came across as being about dietitians! I actually meant the opposite–it’s my fellow “alternative” nutritionists (or as I like to blithely call us, Hippy Nutritionists) that I can’t stand. That’s mostly what I’m speaking to in the article, is the fact that I’m in the same field but not an anti-vaxxer or a yoga pusher or whatever.

      I actually don’t consider myself to be in the same field as dietitians at all. We do completely different types of work, and I would never claim otherwise!

      • Thanks for responding. I understand what you’re saying, and if I can make a suggestion, I think it would also be interesting if you expanded upon it in a future article, because there is a lot of confusion in the public about all the different roles.

        And props for linking to your educational programme at the very beginning! I’ll be waiting to see what’s next.

  14. WHOAA I’m so excited for this series!! you sound like a great mix of science-backed scepticism and witchiness, which I am a very big fan of.

  15. It becomes easy when you start feeling legit better, and then you “cheat” and have the cake or whatever, and then you feel like shit. Once you know what better feels like, feeling better becomes way more enticing than cake.

    YEP. This is what I try to explain to people when I tell them I sometimes have to throw away cookies and chocolate that have been sitting in my cupboard for too long, and they look at me like I’m from another planet (I mean I probably am but that’s a different story).

  16. I hope that this series works out well for those who are interested.

    To my fellow readers recovering from restrictive eating disorders, remember to take care of yourselves and stick to what is best for your recovery. For me, cutting out sugar (or any focus on “good” vs. “bad” foods) would likely trigger a relapse of what can be a very deadly mental illness. Be sure to weigh the costs and benefits, and consult with your treatment team if applicable, before making any changes!

    • Yes!!! I completely agree. I work with a lot of folks who deal with or have dealt with disordered eating, as well as having dealt with it myself, and I cannot agree more that it is so important to respect your limits and boundaries and move at your own pace and only change things if you feel comfortable. I am really sorry if my flippancy was triggering to anyone, my intention was to be silly but I can see how that could have come across in ways I didn’t intend.

      Thank you for this comment.

      • I think the idea to “move at your own pace” still implies that one needs to eventually move away from the all foods approach and back to elimination. I know this is personal for me and that I am highly sensitive to it due to my background with disordered eating but I’ve always loved how Autostraddle avoids diet culture. So this made me pretty bummed.

    • Thanks so much for saying this! I have been sitting with the discomfort that came up for me after reading this last night and the way eliminating sugar was mentioned- that slides right into the way diet culture talks about sugar and couches it in all that rhetoric as a moral judgment on those who might not want to/be able to eliminate it. It’s one of those things you can’t just mention and expect to be taken with best intentions because diet culture and all that oppressive shit is real and will always be at play when talking about (“good” or “bad”) nutrition choices.

      I would beg for AS not to be a space to promote conclusive statements like, “sugar makes everything worse” because it feels icky and we shouldn’t shame ANY food or body choices! Also I think it’s questionable to suggest body cravings are something to eliminate or be wary of (as someone with chronic PMDD who experiences intense cravings) I actually think it’d be wild to suggest I can/should get rid of them. My body is talking to me and it might not be because I”m “addicted” to sugar!

      • Hey folks, I’ve written an official response to these concerns further down in the comments. I really appreciate all of your feedback.

  17. I gave up sugar and cut way down on carbs six months ago and I am still so impressed with the positive change in my mental health. I’m looking forward to this series!

  18. I slightly love you and I cannot wait for more. (I mean, I will, but.)

    please help me break up with sugar /sob

  19. I’m really excited for this article, especially your specialty in autoimmune disease and GI stuff, because I have lived with Crohn’s Disease for the past 15 years. However, I want to echo what other readers have said about your partner not having Crohn’s anymore being “just the coolest!”, thanks to your special diet. Crohn’s is a lifelong, incurable disease. Suggesting otherwise is incorrect.

    Nutrition has been shown to alleviate symptoms, but it is rarely effective as treatment to induce remission. Specific diets can, of course, be really helpful (and necessary) for many Crohn’s patients, but your anecdote in this introduction felt very simplified (special Crohn’s diet -> cure) and frustrating. I’m so glad that your partner was able to achieve remission using a combination of diet and surgery! But that is a rare case. Most patients require intensive medication and treatment, and while certain diets can help, the therapeutic effects of diet are understudied and inconclusive. Thus far, diet has not been rigorously shown in the scientific literature to have curative or remission-inducing effects (aside from enteral nutrition in children, e.g. Luo et al. 2017, Gastroenterology Research and Practice). For example, a paper by Donnellan et al. (2013) states that “Dietary modifications…may improve symptoms but there are currently no data to suggest that these approaches have any role in the induction or maintenance of remission.”

    That being said, I am really looking forward to your series! I encourage you to be very careful with the way you present your anecdotes, and take extra care when touting the curative effects of nutrition. Everyone is different. Please make recommendations based on peer-reviewed science rather than a single lucky case.

    • Well said! I go to a CCFA support group and am in different communities online and I have encountered people who have gone into remission from SCD diet (a few). It’s hugely restrictive though! I also know ppl who say medicinal MJ put them into remission. There’s not studies yet to support these anecdotes so I think it is important to share what works for some people but to also acknowledge the scientific research, as you point out!

      My doctors office is part of a study on low fodmap v. SCD v. control so studies are happening to investigate!

    • Thank you so much for your thoughtful feedback. I think I addressed most of this in the other thread, but if there is anything you feel you’d like me to touch on more, please let me know!

  20. Out of interest how are you defining sugar? Sounds like a strange question but I’ve had people include things like naturally occurring fruit sugars in the sugar you should cut out umbrella.

    • Great question! I don’t include fruit or honey in my definition unless someone is dealing with candida. But some folks find that they do have to cut everything sweet at first to get past the cravings, and then add fruit and honey back in once the cravings pass. Other folks use these things to wean off sugar at a comfortable rate. It’s all a person-by-person thing, and only you know what your body needs!

  21. “I DON’T believe in homeopathy. Homeopathy is shenanigans . Every study shows that it works no better than placebo.”

    I’ve read up to here and I already like you!

  22. I feel deep bone excitement for this series and also maybe like I will finally learn how to make a nutrition plan to address some chronic gut-depression stuff.

  23. Not trying to be a downer but as someone recovering from orthorexia/anorexia, this was pretty triggering. :/

    • I am so sorry to have triggered you, and I appreciate you sharing that it did. I will definitely be including CWs on future installments in this series.

    • I want to be sensitive to people’s experiences (as evidenced by the previous comments/threads, the decisions we make around what we ingest – or don’t ingest – into our bodies can be a very fraught topic for many reasons), but also… wouldn’t the title of this article have suggested that its contents might be something triggering for you?

  24. Welp this is dropping at the best time for me to maybe actually follow through with changing my diet. I’ve tried before since it really helps with the fibro and all, and was doing pretty well for awhile, but I keep falling back to bad habits. Probably doesn’t help that my gf and I are both picky eaters, whoops. But today I feel absolutely awful from acid reflux, the sweets I ate last night, and the fibro aches. Guess it’s time for round 20 or what have you of me versus the bad habits.

    • Thanks for sharing your concerns! I’ve written a formal apology for my comment on sugar further down in the comments.

      Just so you know, I, too, am super anti-detox! (Maybe that should have been one of my “DON’Ts” in the article.)

  25. I think our use of sugar has been way skewed by an industry hell-bent on making lots of money regardless. We don’t need as much sugar as we consume, most of it without our knowledge. It’s not the sugar substance per se that’s bad, it’s the overload.

    It kind of reminds me of tobacco, which is a noble plant in its own right, and when used ceremonially can be very enlightening and transformative.
    But I think it’s clear that the industry surrounding tobacco has warped its nature beyond belief and turned into something that is far more harmful that nature originally made it.

    Much like when your mind-expanding-drug-of-choice gets cut with weird-ass shit by your local provider. Not cool to get poisoned that way ! Our intent as eaters of sugar may be noble but we’re being deceived and abused by the major providers. The brain comes to love the sugar so much, it may not be addictive but it might as well be. In some circumstances, that communion of brain and sugar may be the only thing that makes life feel livable, and so you will seek it out, and will be fed more than the body can actually properly metabolize.

    I know my analogy is going to hurt someone and for that I deeply apologize, I mean no disrespect.

  26. Other commenters have shared concerns about the anecdotal success about your partner’s healing being used to bolster credentials, as well as folks noting that this piece was triggering for disordered eating recovery. As someone with chronic illnesses as well as a mental health professional specializing in eating disorders and body image, I have to say that I share their concerns. Autostraddle has done a good job in recent years at making folks with disabilities, chronic illnesses, and folks with disordered eating and folks who reject the diet industry feel included, and I feel like this piece can be alienating people or worse, triggering them or making them feel that autostraddle isn’t supportive of these identities.

    I think that you’ve tried to address some of these concerns in the comments, but the fact that many folks are having concerned responses to this to me indicates that a different approach would be helpful for this series. I think it would be helpful for future articles to have a disclaimer (before the article begins, not something that gets fleshed out in the comment section, because folks shouldn’t have to dig through comments if they’re feeling triggered) that explains that you are not recommending specific medical advice and any treatments should be discussed with your healthcare team; and that while you recommend certain foods be stopped, that should be considered against any potential relapse of disordered eating symptoms/body image concerns. I would recommend this so that folks can decide if they want to read the article going forward and because frankly, I think its kind of a liability concern to make these types of medical claims on a news/entertainment website (as wonderful as Autostraddle is, it’s not a healthcare site and I think its important for readers to have more of an informed consent process if they are going to be following advice in this column). Thanks for hearing all of our feedback and considering it going forward.

  27. This sounds like an interesting series and I appreciate the idea of being straight-forward about your perspective going into it.

    I’m surprised however that the staff haven’t edited the sentence that makes it seem like you claim a nutritional cure for Crohn’s. I 100% believe it wasn’t your intention, but it is very unclear. Before reading the other comments on here I was confused myself by the juxtaposition of “my partner doesn’t have Crohn’s anymore” and “I don’t believe that nutrition can ‘cure’ you”. The second sentence felt like a contradiction rather than a clarification. A simple edit to “my partner’s Crohn’s is in remission” or “my partner no longer has symptoms of Crohn’s” or such could fix the unintentional miscommunication.

    Looking particularly forward to advice on sugar reduction. :)

    • Just dropping in to let you know that I am working on getting a clarifying edit made to the line about my partner’s Crohn’s. I appreciate your feedback a lot!

  28. I’m excited for this column! Sugar-addicted witchy queer dealing with UC, very recently diagnosed with fibromyalgia and joint hypermobility as well.

  29. To everyone who has commented with concerns about disordered eating, I want to formally apologize. I was overly flippant with my comment about quitting sugar, and in the name of being silly I ended up triggering folks. I said that sugar is “bad for you,” without considering the larger cultural narrative around sugar that makes people feel shamed for eating it. It was careless and I shouldn’t have done it. For the record, when I say that sugar is “bad for you,” I mean “sugar causes inflammation in your body that causes pain and makes you sick.” My position has nothing to do with weight or the vague western medicine idea of what “healthy” eating looks like. I should have been more specific with my language, and I’m sorry that my failure to do so triggered anyone. I am working on having that line removed from the piece

    All of these columns will have CWs in the future.

    To everyone concerned about the line about my partner “not having Crohn’s,” I hear you. I’m sorry that my language bothers you. My partner has been encouraged by therapists to phrase it that way for himself when talking to people about it, and I support their position on that. The way we think and talk about things has a huge impact on our well being, and I think there is a lot of power in being able to consider remission a lack of disease. I will try to make a clarifying edit that still respects this position.

    • That makes a lot of sense, I can see how it could be beneficial for your partner to to frame it that way. Thanks for the clarification!

    • Thanks for saying this…it means a lot! I’ve counted on Autostraddle for non-diety/all foods are good foods writing. It feels like one of the few news sources where it’s not thrown in readers’ faces. While I personally disagree with some of the information in your article, I respect that everyone gets to choose their own truth, and I’m super happy that you addressed rising concerns.

    • “sugar causes inflammation in your body that causes pain and makes you sick.”? oh boy… I don’t know where to start with that statement… How does sugar cause inflammation? What kind of inflammation? Where in the body? How does said inflammation cause pain? What sort of sickness are you talking about? Do you base this statement on existing literature or your “clinical practice”? Does sugar do this to everyone, because it sure sounds like that’s what you’re saying! And what intake of sugar does it take for this inflammation to appear?

      This statement is wrought with oversimplification at best and misleading at worst, verges on pseudoscience and from what I’ve seen so far I can’t help but believe that the rest of this series will be the same.

      To Autostraddle staff, I urge you to abort this series. It has the potential of being misleading and dangerous for the benefit of self-promotion, as you’ve already seen in the comments. This person is not qualified to be presenting as a nutrition expert to your vulnerable audience. Please stop it sooner rather than later.

      • whoa there! take what is useful or meaningful to you and leave the rest. cane sugar definitely causes inflammation in my body, and i’m appreciate that someone on the autostraddle internet wrote a thing about that for me to read and nod along to. if you’re not into it, i’m sure there’s a handy little x button on your web browser that will take you away from this article :)

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