The Korean food show craze has taken over many social media platforms. These shows are the food eating challenges in enormous amounts which sometimes even look impossible. The Korean bloggers and entertainers started these shows recently which have now become viral and have spread to the world. People from many countries are indulging in these challenges for popularity which most people surprisingly, find satisfying and addicting to watch. But experts consider this a psychological game that can be harmful both physically and mentally in the long run.
Social media can be bizarre and unimaginable sometimes when extreme challenges and dares are made popular, especially among young kids and adults. In many countries like India, China, Japan, the USA, the UK, Africa, etc., bloggers have gained much popularity and recognition through these potentially dangerous yet psychologically satisfying game shows.
Mukbang or food eating (in large quantities) shows are highly criticized by medical and health experts and psychologists consider them as a mere source of gaining followers, views, subscribers, which ultimately leads to easy money and fame.
Is it “gluttony”?
Some critics even have termed Mukbang shows a form of gluttony which means, “Overindulgence to the point where one is no longer eating just to live”. This makes people greedy and seems quite unethical and messy to some.
Health experts believe that eating large amounts of food in a single sitting and forcing the stomach to digest all that can gradually increase the size and capacity of the stomach. In the long run, this can result in serious health issues, particularly, fatal obesity.
Moreover, some also believe that Mukbang normally promotes unhealthy eating habits, unnecessary consumption of junk food and fast food, animal cruelty, and food wastage. The most popular food eaten in a Mukbang is ramen or noodles which itself is not a healthy thing to eat in such a large quantity. Besides, excessive amounts of eating and the desire for popularity also generates a narcissistic personality in a person.
These claims are justified to a large extent as now even children are indulging in Mukbang shows to gain social media popularity. Seeing young kids eating in a beastly manner is the last thing that anyone would want to see, let alone their parents!
What’s so appealing about them?
Mukbang shows are a type of satisfying sounds and ASMR which is also quite trending on social media these days. With heightened ASMR sounds of cooking, chewing, drinking, opening wrappers, eating scrumptious food in close-up shots, are liked by the viewers. Although many don’t even know the reason for such addiction to watch, listen, and “feel” visual and audio representation of the Mukbang, they neither seem to get enough of them nor do they realize the dangers of this addiction.
There is a Mukbang rave going on major social media platforms like Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, etc. These have turned into a regular source of income for so many people. However, many doubt the credibility of these shows. Critics blame that shows are not real and the Mukbangers make many cuts or throw-ups during the cuts. Because medically, the health experts are surprised at such inhumane food consumption in one sitting which seems quite unreal. Besides, the Mukbangers remain slim and lean even after so much eating. This makes the experts believe that there are some “faking” techniques or tricks that the Mukbangers do by compromising their health. Hmm… doubtful, no?
As the wise say, “excess of anything is bad”. This is true for food as well. Even if you are into clean eating habits, you need to have a balance maintained. Similarly, Mukbangs can be dangerous in the long run if proper health safety measures are not taken. The spices, drinks, sugars, carbohydrates, and unnatural amounts of other artificial ingredients can create diabetes, heart problems, hormonal changes, stomach ulcers, etc.
Everyone loves food, so the Mukbangers know how to attract viewers and gain popularity, right?