I slacked a bit in blogging last week, and didn't post a recipe for Wednesday dinner. Although I don't know if ya'll would really want to eat what I cooked, I ended up getting really sick a day later. Unrelated? Potentially, but it did take the wind out of my blogging sails a bit. In lieu of last weeks dinner post, I thought I'd write a bit about something else food related.
So, I've discovered that there are a lot of episodes of weird British reality shows that you can watch for free on youtube. One of my new favorites is called "Freaky Eaters." It's a show about grown adult people who only like to eat one kind of food. This isn't about your garden variety picky eaters who don't like dressing on their salads or shun red meat. These are folks who literally only eat one kind of food.
For example, this episode features a 25 year old man who ONLY eats meat. Since adolescence, 90% of what goes in this guys mouth has been sausage, hamburgers, chicken and ham steak. The thought of fresh fruits and vegetables makes him gag.
The real kicker is, his girlfriend is a vegetarian who NEVER eats meat. He makes her brush her teeth after she eats so he won't accidentally taste veggies.
So the premise of the show is, people like this decide they want to change and that they want to expand on their limited diets. They get together with a nutritionist who tries to get them to eat new food, and a psychologist who tries to figure out why the heck they only eat one type of food.
So usually how it works is the hot nutritionist lady starts by setting out a whole table of food and tries to entice the person into trying something new. It often ends in tears and gagging, but it's really compelling how little the people know about other foods beyond their singular staple. Meat man here couldn't even recognize a piece of cheese. He. didn't. know. what. cheese. was.
Often too, the reason people only eat one thing is because they're literally scared of food. There is an episode where a college aged girl screams in terror at a piece of lettuce, and ends up crying over touching a banana. So, to conquer these food fears, the psychologist usually takes the person out to do some adrenaline pumping activity, hoping they'll use the endorphins to build up confidence and conquer their fears. Typically, this involves jumping off a tall building or boxing a punching bag with some symbolic word written on it. One time though, a middle aged guy whose liver was failing from only eating ice cream just had to touch a bee hive, to simultaneously crush his other extreme phobia.
The real craziest part of this show is that there are 3 seasons of it (or series, as the brits say). I've seen people who only eat cheese, macaroni with ketchup on it, spaghetti-os, and potatoes (primarily in the form of chips). I'm just kind of surprised that there are so many 18+ people out there that have this intense issue with food. According to this article about the potato chip girl - she was selected from a pool of over 400 applicants!
At the end, the people are challenged to eat a normal dinner with their family. From what I've seen, it usually goes pretty well. I can't imagine what it's like though to have your entire family staring at you in disbelief as you attempt to muddle your way through eating your first salad, at the age of 30, on national television. Wow!