At the very beginning of every food challenge that I attempt, I have my own little personal ritual before taking my first bite to start the challenge timer. and part of that ritual is to make the “sign of the cross.” Therefore, I get comments about gluttony, one of the seven deadly sins, on almost all of my videos by people criticizing that I am praying before eating an over-sized meal. Currently, I am not exactly a “practicing” Catholic, but I was raised Catholic and will call myself a Catholic for the rest of my life. I have my own personal belief in God (or “higher power”), and there is nothing anybody can say or do to change it. With that being said, this website is about food, and there will never be any articles that don’t involve food, and therefore I will never mention any of my religious views and no other future article contributors will either. Because it is strictly about food, and every single person in the world must eat in order to survive, we don’t care what your race, gender, size, or sexual preference is, and we don’t care what your religious and political views are. Any person willing to help #feedthemovement is welcome on this website no matter what, and you will not be discriminated against as long as I own it. Our policy is just like the septic tanks that most food ends up in (because we don’t waste). We don’t treat people differently based on details that don’t humanly matter, and we accept anything that fits, as long as you don’t think your “sh*t don’t stink.”
Reasons Why Food Challenges Are NOT Gluttonous
As mentioned in Are Food Challenges Healthy?, competitive eating is a sport that hardly anybody understands, so therefore it is looked down upon and treated as a scapegoat by many ignorant people that simply don’t know any better and have never taken the time to learn about it. When close-minded people don’t understand a “different” particular group of people, they have a natural tendency to look down upon their way of life without even taking a few minutes to learn why they do the things they do. Food challengers and competitive eaters are not any more gluttonous than anybody else, and maybe even less than most people. Here are the reasons why:
5 pounds is 5 pounds – Most people eat 3-6 meals per day depending on their lifestyle, fitness goals, and calorie requirements. If you eat five meals per day, and each meal averaged a weight of 1lb (.45kg), that is 5lbs total for the day of food. On days that competitive eaters do a food challenge or longer contest, that is typically the only meal of the day. While it took 5 separate meals for you to eat 5 pounds, it took the competitive eater only one 5lb meal, but 5 pounds is still 5 pounds, and you both ate the same weight of food over the 24 hour period.
4,000 calories is 4,000 calories – Using the same thought process as above, and simple math, whether you eat ten 400 calorie meals or just one big 4,000 calorie meal, at the end of the day (or 2 days) it is still 4,000 calories. An eater may have 4,000 calories in one meal, but for the next few days after the challenge, he or she will be eating less than normal, and therefore the calorie totals will all even out so no excess weight is gained.
Some eaters actually use the calories – Back during the 2008 Summer Olympics, millions of people were discussing and sharing articles about the 12,000 calorie daily diet of Michael Phelps, USA’s most “decorated” Olympic swimmer. It was never looked down upon because people recognized that he was burning off all the necessary calories during his intense training sessions. Many people that participate in challenges and eating contests are athletes and people that enjoy exercising often. My good friend Ramsey has over 120 restaurant challenge wins, but he also runs over 75 miles per WEEK!! Needless to say, the calories from his competitions get used during his long daily running sessions. Many other “eaters” have similar active lifestyles too.
Food challenges involve an ultimate goal. All-you-can-eat-buffets do not. – If you are attempting a giant food challenge, there is a certain amount of food that you must finish to win. Even if you are doing a record challenge where you have to beat the previous quantity record, you get to stop once you have surpassed that particular quantity. If you are at an all-you-can-eat-buffet, there is no ultimate goal, and no matter how much food you eat, there will always be more prepared and brought out for everyone else at the buffet. The only thing you can possibly win is a stomach ache, and either way you still have to pay for it. To eat to the point of fullness, and then to over-indulge without any particular ultimate goal or reason to eat that much, that is gluttony. Even in an eating contest, you only get to eat for a set time limit, and then you stop. There is an ultimate goal. Whether you are at your own home or at a buffet, if you have over-indulged without any particular reason to, it would be pretty hypocritical to criticize competitive eaters who actually have an ultimate goal when they eat that much. That doesn’t necessarily make food challenges morally acceptable, but know there are more buffet & AYCE restaurants around the world than restaurants with challenges. Have you ever considered that perspective?
Gaining excess fat stems from consistently consuming more calories than your body burns off on a daily basis through movement, exercise, and natural body processes. If an eater practices moderation and counteracts the excess calories consumed through eating competitions by either increasing his or her amount of exercise or limiting calories consumed the days before and after the event, how is that gluttonous? I absolutely love to travel, which is one of the reasons I created this website, and when I travel to a new area I do as many events as I physically can because I know I won’t be back anytime soon. While this could be considered borderline gluttony since I am eating way more than my daily requirements for multiple days in a row, I spend the next few weeks afterwards (or however long it takes) exercising hard and eating like a bird until all of the excess weight I gained is gone. Then my body is back at normal equilibrium, and no food was ever “reversed” or even wasted.
No matter what your belief system is, and whether you believe in a “higher power” or not, it does not matter. There is no accepted way of thinking that says it’s okay to “sit behind your computer anonymously and be an ignorant asshole.” Whether you agree with what we do or not, the great thing about the world today is that we are free to do it anyway, and i guarantee you that we we will. While you have the freedom of speech, you also have the freedom to shut the hell up, so please avoid commenting ignorantly and offensively about things you don’t care about or understand. There may be a permanent imprint of your butt on the couch in your house, but please realize that other people are out enjoying the world and all the great things that it has to offer, and nothing you do will change that. You may consider some things I do gluttonous, but also know that I am one of less than five people that will consistently do multiple events per week, yet there are thousands (and soon millions) of people interested in food challenges and competitive eating, so I am not exactly a good case study. Eaters that practice moderation and self-control that are not wasteful are not promoting gluttony at all, and know that it is fairly hypocritical to condescendingly criticize a way of life that you don’t agree with while using religion as the foundation of your poor argument. As it says in The Bible, “Why do you see the splinter in your brother’s eye but not notice the log in your own eye?” Please keep all very ignorant comments to yourself.
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