“Never eat more than you can lift.”
Mukbang is a Korean term that means “eating broadcast.”
This YouTube fad in South Korea and the U.S. features influencers that eat a large quantity of food (about 4,000 calories) in one sitting before their amazed viewers.
The eaters gain following and money for this. They can earn up to US$10,000 a month that excludes food and drink sponsorships. When a mukbanger becomes popular, earnings can reach up to US$100,000 annually, apart from the income from endorsements, ebooks, and product reviews. Take, for instance, Christi Caston, the Texan host of YummyBitesTV, a mukbang YouTube channel where she claims she earns double as she does when working full time. In South Korea, fans would send direct money transfers to mukbangers.
Have you heard about ASMR? It stands for “autonomous sensory meridian response.” People who watch mukbang experience ASMR, the same way when others feel immense pleasure from simple acts such as whispering, hair-combing, etc. Artists often act in videos with food and accompany them with slurping, chewing, crunching and other eating noises. These tactics elicit positive responses from the viewers. Mukbang fans say that watching and listening to people eat is next to hypnotic because they associate eating with pleasure.
Mukbangers may binge on everything, from bowls of ramen to chicken buckets, boxes of pizza, jars of candies, and even hefty servings of salad.
Despite the temptation of mukbang videos, doctors and dietitians warn that the practice can be harmful to health.
As a reaction, Chinese President Xi Jinping is not in favor of mukbang and has reportedly cracked down on the videos with his 'Clean Plate' campaign. The campaign was launched after the President also said that the pandemic had "sounded the alarm" on food waste. For him, China must "maintain a sense of crisis about food security."
Because of this, the government-owned CCTV network criticized mukbangers. Anyone that typed "eating show" or "eating live stream" on search engines received warning notices.
Now that Christmas is coming, would you consider doing a mukbang to feature all the Christmas feasts and party food that will abound this season? It was just an idea. Let’s discuss this below.