As millions of Seattle Seahawks fans mourned the loss of their team to the New England Patriots in the recent Super Bowl game, one fan actually tried to drown himself in cheese. This 45 year old car salesman, a former Seattle resident, drove down to a pizza parlor and ordered 5 layers of extra cheese on his Margarita. The pizza resto’s chef, upon reading the order slip, peeked to see who ordered it. He was expecting to see a bunch of teenagers as it may have been meant to be a prank of some sort. Instead, the chef saw an average middle aged man seated at table 19.
As expected, the amount of mozzarella was too much for the surface area of the dough and as a result, the presentation was a mash of yellow greasy cheese. Half way through the meal, the customer complained about the air-conditioning being too hot, about the restaurant being too cramped resulting in his inability to breathe comfortably. The waiter said the customer seemed to be really feeling very awful.
The customer was escorted out for some fresh air. It was a good thing that the customer was carrying a 5mg hypertension medicine. If not for the restaurant manager’s insistent questioning, the customer would have totally forgotten about his emergency pill which he’s always carried in his shirt’s pocket. The customer was hypertensive.
Eating disorders related to stress and depression is very common in America where, compared to other countries, food is in abundance. There are 24 million Americans who have eating disorders whether they are aware of it or not.
50% of people who overeat do so because of depression. Of this 50%, only 10% are being treated. And of this 10% who are receiving treatment, only 35% are successful in managing their condition. In America, eating disorders is the number 1 cause of death with complications leading to heart disease, diabetes and the likes.
Studies have shown that a restaurant’s ambience could play a very good role in controlling eating disorders. Experts say that the problem is not in the overabundance of food but in the atmosphere that the eating place is projecting.
Since overeating is an outlet for depression, restaurants with a wholesome, happy and relaxed atmosphere are not conducive for such overindulgence. People with eating disorders will try to stay away from these wholesome restaurants and if they do dine in, they are able to control and manage their binges.
It doesn’t really matter if it’s a buffet or a big plate restaurant. Most people with eating disorders cannot overeat in a happy mood. Well lighted customer friendly restaurants have proven to be very effective in controlling over eating.
Depression cannot overpower you when there is too much interaction going on. This is the reason why most people with eating disorders dine alone. They want to be free from the possibility of scrutiny and judgment.
People who have plans of over indulging will prefer the drab places where they can sit in the corner and order away. Their condition requires a dull dining place with impersonal customer service, restaurants with waiters who won’t even notice you unless you call them for an order. This lack of attention and regard further fuels their depression and justifies their moment’s over indulgence.
CiCi’s Pizza parlor is a fun place to be. Some might say that the buffet and the “eat all you can” idea won’t do the overeater any good. But remember, it’s not about the abundance of food. It is about the depression.
While the buffet could easily be considered as a “no-no”, the immediate presentation of all the delights works against overeating. When the visual satisfaction of the appetite is partly fulfilled, there is less room for craving and irresponsible eating. Let’s just say that seeing all that food has already filled you up partly.
One reason that leads to overeating is indecisiveness. When the first set of orders is unsatisfactory, the overeater will try out a new set. Another reason that leads to overeating is avoidance of food wastage. An overeater will make the most of his dollar and finish his plate shiny clean.
Buffets work against these to culprits because customers can easily choose what they like from what they see and, they are allowed to taste every entrée in small portions. And, there is also a tendency to be self-conscious. In buffets, nobody really looks at your plate and notices how much you put on it, only the number of times you went to the buffet table.
Eating disorders are best cured with happiness. You don’t have to diet to beat it. You just have to go to restaurants with a happy ambience, preferably with people you like.