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Cape Town - The only bad thing about January is realising you may have overdone it at meal times in the festive season. That and the idea, for some, that they blew their bonus in the holidays and won’t get paid again until the very end of the month. But at least those are seasonal problems.
To other people, overdoing it at meal times is a problem they struggle with all year round. Some of those people are featured on TLC’s show, Secret Eaters, which premiered on the TopTV channel last month.
Hosted by Anna Richardson, this show follows the lives of British citizens who have a hard time when it comes to food.
They wear their issues around their tummies, in the shape of muffin tops and flabby arms. They just can’t stop eating.
This obviously can’t be a comfortable situation, what with most of the featured folks’ family and friends constantly telling them to lay off the cake and cream and croissants and just about anything edible.
So it’s no wonder that they have taken to eating in private. While promising their loved ones that they won’t eat as much as they do, they continue doing exactly that when no-one is watching. Hence the title of the programme.
Secret Eaters is as invasive as a reality show can get.
Those who eat secretly are monitored by surveillance cameras for a whole day. Everything that they put into their shopping trolleys and into their mouths faces constant criticism. Nothing escapes scrutiny, especially those items that are hidden under beds, inside cupboards and behind larger items in the fridge. But Secret Eaters aims to help people, not just put them up for blasting.
So, Anna and her team attempt to give the eaters a second chance at a normal life by encouraging healthier eating habits and confronting those psychological hurdles that hamper their recovery.
What’s fascinating about this series is that most of the people put under surveillance don’t believe that they have a problem.
And those who do, believe that they aren’t the cause of the problem.
They actually believe that they don’t eat too much. In fact, they don’t eat enough.
While it’s easy to judge, you may find that their reasons (not excuses) are similar to reasons many people give when it comes to different demons.
So, Secret Eaters isn’t just a warning to watch what you eat, it’s also an interesting look at what’s eating away at people. - Cape Argus
l Secret Eaters is on TLC (TopTV channel 453) every Thursday at 10pm