Thick Dumpling Skin

[It's what's on the inside that counts]

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Thank You, Savor Good!

Savor Good recently featured our co-founder Lynn Chen!

She realized her eating disorder was at its worst and that she wanted to be at peace with her body, especially as she wanted at the time to someday have children. “I was like a zombie during those years. It had taken over pretty much everything.” She decided in 2009 to take a year off from acting and founded The Actor’s Diet blog with holistic health counselor and fellow actor Christy Meyers.

“My mission was to stop labeling, to stop being on a diet. I wanted each day to be manageable and not for it to be an unbelievable burden. I used the blog as an experimental ground. I ended up finding out in that year that I was fine with myself when I was 30 pounds heavier and fine with myself when I was at my skinniest. It really helped me learn how to deal with that ugly rejection piece and needing validation from others, which I think I still struggle with. Anyone struggles with needing to be told you’re ok. It didn’t disappear but it helped me to find my own voice and trust myself.” The blog – run solely by Chen since 2010 – has evolved from her daily food journal into a forum that highlights her restaurant reviews, places of interest, travel, fashion and beauty tips, recipes, daily life, and life on set.

During her process of coming to terms with her eating disorders, she became an Ambassador for the National Eating Disorders Association, worked with the National Organization of Women, and co-founded the body image blog Thick Dumpling Skin featured in Marie Claire magazine. Rituals such as always having candy and tea after she eats and being aware of how certain foods make her feel has contributed to her recovery. She has learned to become open-minded and empathetic. “What I mean by open-mindedness is a willingness to see beyond the boxes that society puts on us and that we put on ourselves. I always try to give others the benefit of the doubt even if they’re not treating me nicely.”

Read the full article here.

Filed under lynn chen savor good acting eating disorders asian americans

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On Our Radar: This is Life with Lisa Ling

This lady certainly needs no introduction. 


Said Ling, “I have always believed that the more we know about each other, the more evolved we become. I am absolutely thrilled to bring stories of everyday people with extraordinary lives to the premier global journalism platform, CNN. I hope viewers will open their hearts and minds to the incredible worlds we’re about to explore together.”

This is Life" premiers on CNN September 28th at 10pm.  Also, check out her site Secret Society of Women - a community site to share advice, anonymously.

Filed under lisa ling cnn this is life

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On Our Radar: Artists at Play’s 99 Histories

Artists at Play presents the Los Angeles premiere of 99 Histories by Julia Cho, directed by Leslie Ishii. Here is a video with our friend Dr. Michi Fu on the issue of mental health as reflected in this play and within the Asian American community.

Set in a suburb of L.A., 99 Histories is a powerful drama tackling issues of mental health as well as cultural/ generational differences between parent and child. Eunice, a former cello prodigy, comes home pregnant and unmarried, trying to mend the relationship with her estranged mother. Haunted by violent memories and previous battles with mental illness, Eunice must confront her ghosts before she can move forward in life. In this riveting story of memory, legacy and home, what is remembered might be made up and the only homelands that seem to exist are imaginary. 

September 13 - 28, 2014 | Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays @ 8 pm | Sundays @ 2 pm & 7 pm

The Lounge Theatre 2 6201 Santa Monica Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90038



Know something that should be On Our Radar? Contact us!

Filed under play los angeles mental health asians artists at play 99 histories

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"Some people grumble that roses have thorns; I am grateful that thorns have roses." - Alphonse Karr

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ShameLESS at the OCA Convention

A few weeks ago I had the honor to moderate the “ShameLESS: Tackling taboos in the APA Community" panel at the OCA National Convention in LA with a few amazing speakers. Even though I played the role of the moderator, the discussion took off without any moderation and was extremely inspiring despite the heavy subjects.


 The speakers spoke at length about the intersectionality of all the different “taboo” topics in the Asian American community, such as eating disorders within the Asian American community that’s covered here on this site, and how they’re all related to each other. From youth depression and suicidal thoughts, child sexual abuse and domestic violence, to incarcerated members of our community, the issues are cyclical, because in some way, they’re all different forms of outlet. The only way for us as a community to break out of the cycle is to use our voice and speak up about these issues. If we’re ashamed of these issues ourselves, how can we begin to face them and deal with them? 

Therefore I want to use this post to highlight the work of the speakers in hopes that you’ll take the time to learn more about the work of these organizations: 

Khmer Girls in Action

Khmer Girls in Action is a community-based organization whose mission is to build a progressive and sustainable Long Beach community that works for gender, racial and economic justice led by Southeast Asian young women.

Peer Health Exchange

Peer Health Exchange’s mission is to give teenagers the knowledge and skills they need to make healthy decisions. We do this by training college students to teach a comprehensive health curriculum in public high schools that lack health education.

Our vision is that, one day, all teens will have the knowledge and skills they need to make healthy decisions.

Amity Foundation

Amity Foundation is dedicated to the inclusion and habilitation of individuals, children, and families marginalized by homelessness, poverty, addiction, crime, racism, sexism, trauma, and violence.

Amity is committed to research, development, implementation, and dissemination of information regarding community building.

Remembrance, Resolution, Reconciliation, Renovation, Restoration

Let’s continue to build. 

- Lisa

Filed under khmer girls in action peer health exchange amity foundation oca oca national convention

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On Our Radar: Kulap Vilaysack’s Origin Story

LA Actor/Writer/Comedian Kulap Vilaysack is currently raising funds for her documentary Origin Story:

In my directorial debut, I explore my tangled family tree to find out who I am. When I was 14, I took my father’s side in an argument and my mother replied, “Why are you defending him? He’s not your real dad.” Twenty years later, I’m finally ready to learn what that means. 

Origin Story is a feature-length, international quest with stops in Los Angeles, Minnesota, and Laos to meet the biological father I never knew. On the road, unforeseen revelations strike as hilarious or heartbreaking, rarely in between. An avid comic book reader with a vigilante character named after me in the DC Comics universe, I must summon the courage of Katharsis, because each question is another step out on a limb. 

Origin Story is a deeply personal but universally relevant tale of immigration, conflict, addiction, and personal responsibility. Interviewees in the film include my extended family, husband Scott Aukerman, and close friends like Sarah Silverman, Casey Wilson, June Diane Raphael and Howard Kremer.  

Watch the trailer, and if you can donate, visit their IndieGoGo page.

Know something that should be On Our Radar? Contact us!

Filed under Kulap Vilaysack documentary origin story