Mukbang, One Meal A Day: Doctors warn public vs unhealthy diet risks

July 8, 2024 - 2:22 PM
(Image by Mohamed_hassan via Pixabay)

Medical professionals called on the public to prioritize a healthy diet amid unhealthy eating habits being promoted on social media as well as the death of a “mukbang” content creator.

One Meal A Day

MJ Ramores, an adult medicine specialist who posts healthcare content on TikTok, addressed the “One Meal A Day” (OMAD) trend started by TikTok user Michael Teodoso.

Teodoso, who has 96,800 followers and four million likes on TikTok, is sharing videos about his OMAD diet plan, where he can be seen eating eggs and other meals once a day.

The straightforward dietary plan advises individuals to consume particular meals, such as several eggs and ground beef within a designated hour each day and abstain from consuming anything else after.

Screenshot of a content creator doing OMAD. (MJ Ramores/TikTok)

Physician Ramores flagged this practice, pointing out that not meeting the required food intake could lead to malnutrition.

“Siyempre marami sa atin ang gustong maging slim o payat, at maging kaaya-aya tignan. Pero tandaan natin is that kailangan kahit nag da-diet tayo ay nakukuha natin lahat ng nutrition na kailangan ng ating katawan,” Ramores said in her video.

According to the doctor, vitamins, minerals and nutrients are essential for maintaining a healthy physique and that fats should not be avoided.

“Hindi ina-avoid ang fats. Kasi mayroon itong mga vitamins na soluble… Kasama na rito ang vitamins A, D, E at K. Kapag mayroon diyan na mababa o kulang, hindi magiging healthy ito sa ating katawan,” she added. 

@mjramores2 How about your diet? Nutritious pa ba? When cutting calories, make sure you have enough source of vitamins and minerals as well as fiber! Don’t forget the veggies! 😊  #docmj #longervideos #OMAD  #nutrition ♬ original sound  – @ItsmeDocMJ

Those who are still in search of a better diet plan without risking their health should look into other effective regimens and healthier diets.

Licensed doctor and public health advocate Winston Kilimanjaro Tiwaquen, also known as Doc Kilimanguru on TikTok, explained the difference between OMAD to other intermittent fasting (IF) strategies.

According to Kilimanguru, IF is typically known for its 16:8 fasting ratio. This means that an individual may eat within the span of 8 hours and refrain from eating within the next 16 hours.

“Ang fasting [ng OMAD] ay mas matagal. Hindi lang siya 16 hours, kung hindi ay 23 hours,” he explained. 

When someone practices OMAD or any type of IF, the doctor explained that one should still consume the recommended amount of calories based on their height, weight, age, and gender.

“Personally, I do not recommend OMAD or any kind of diet kung saan kailangan mong tiisin ang gutom mo. Food is our source of energy,” he emphasized.

Kilimanguru said that dieting should prioritize mental health and comfort instead of solely focusing on weight loss, advocating for lifestyle changes that promote comfort rather than starvation.

He added that controlling portion sizes per meal and incorporating regular exercise are also advised for individuals who enjoy eating but still want to manage their weight.

“Kaya mo bang tiisin ang gutom for life?” Kilimanguru asked. “Eating is good, just don’t overeat.”

@dockilimanguruAno ang OMAD diet?♬ original sound  – Dr. Kilimanguru

“Hindi naman need na magpalipas ng gutom kapag nagpa-fasting. Dapat makinig ka sa katawan mo. Kapag alam mong gutom ka na, kain na dapat,” a TikTok user commented.

“We need protein sa body para magka-muscle so eat tuna, sardines, egg or meat pero may proper grams lang po yun,” another online user suggested.

Overeating, ‘mukbang’ risks

Aside from undereating to lessen one’s weight, the Department of Health (DOH) also stressed the danger of overeating. 

On Sunday, the DOH announced plans to ban eating vlogs such as mukbang in the country following the death of a content creator who suffered a stroke influenced by food consumption.

“[Overeating] will lead to hypertension, heart condition, non-communicable diseases and even heart attacks,” DOH Secretary Ted Herbosa said.

Mukbang is a South Korean practice that broadcasts eating meals on social media either via live stream or on YouTube.

Dongz Apatan was a mukbang vlogger who died last June 14 due to excessive food intake such as fried chicken among others.

According to Healthline, overeating could lead to more sleepiness, body fat or bloating, hunger disorder, mental decline and diseases such as obesity, diabetes and stroke.

The DOH also expressed interest in coordinating with the Department of Information and Communications Technology to reduce online content on mukbang.