Is Mukbang Considered An Eating Disorder? | Psychology Behind Mukbangers

One of the most popular viral trends right now is Mukbang. One platform where this trend is still gaining traction is YouTube. However, no matter how famous it has become, its effects on viewers, who may or may not understand what the term means, are complex and nuanced. While many people enjoy the trend, others worry, is Mukbang considered an eating disorder?

The term "mukbang" combines the South Korean terms for "eating" and "broadcast." The term refers to shows where a person interacts with an internet audience while consuming massive amounts of food. While these videos aren't exactly about eating disorders, they may be triggering for those who suffer from eating disorders like binge eating disorders, bulimia, or anorexia.

Mukbang videos gained massive popularity in the United States back in 2015. Some YouTubers have even begun earning hundreds of thousands of views per day by eating what may look like unhealthy, high-fat, processed fast food. So what's the secret behind such videos? Why are people consuming so much food for the camera if not for an eating disorder? Let's find out!

What Exactly Is Mukbang?

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Originally popular in South Korea, Mukbang refers to the practice of live-streaming one's mealtime experiences with friends and family. However, the term can also indicate a live eating show hosted by the Mukbang host.

Mukbang was primarily a South Korean phenomenon before 2015, when it served as a means of warding off isolation and promoting community stability. Meok-ja/muk-ja, which means "let's eat" or "eating," and bang song, which means "to broadcast," are the roots of the Korean phrase Mukbang.

Since Mukbangs became popular in the United States in 2015, some YouTubers have started to earn tens of thousands of views per day. Unfortunately, the common characteristics in most of these videos are the copious amounts of unhealthy, high-fat, processed fast food mukbangers tend to consume.

Mukbangers, mukbang BJs, and mukbang hosts are all terms for those who engage in the practice of mukbang. Sometimes they cook in front of the camera and eat what they make. It's important to remember that some films have extremely obnoxious chewing, slurping, and biting sounds and descriptions of eating the food.

Mukbang may have begun as a broadcast in which people shared a meal, but it has since expanded to include much more than simply food. Given its global reach, producers constantly try new things to make the show fresh and engaging for viewers.

How Do Mukbangers Eat So Much And Stay Thin?

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Mukbangers, in general, maintain their slim physiques through regular activity and a high metabolic rate. However, since this varies from person to person, several factors come into play.

The popularity of Mukbang has recently skyrocketed, and many are curious about the secret behind the mukbangers' enviable physiques. Mukbangers tend to stay skinny for various reasons. These include –

  • Eating Healthy Only After Shooting

Undoubtedly, healthy eating is one of the simplest ways mukbangers may maintain their slim physiques without appearing overweight in the video. Unfortunately, there are a lot of Mukbangers who only consume a healthy diet once they've wrapped filming. This strategy is crucial because of the high-calorie intake while being filmed.

You may be shocked at seeing a mukbanger eating copious amounts of food in a video. But don't forget that after shooting, they will most likely digest everything for a few hours before their next meal. Digesting such huge meals can take at least 12 hours and often more.

  • Overly Strict Dieting

Do you know someone who is incredibly underweight yet doesn't eat? If so, that's one way for mukbangers to maintain their slim figures. Unfortunately, they resort to extreme dieting to maintain viewership on their channel. Doing so will pique the audience's interest and bring in more money. No doubt, these diets are becoming exceedingly dangerous.

Plus, there aren't many options for what these mukbangers can eat every meal of the day on these diets. If you ever got to interview one of these mukbangers, you would be shocked at how poorly they eat all day. Their obsessive self-care, diets, and other practices are among the worst you could ever witness.

  • Lightning-Fast Metabolic Rate

Some folks just happen to be born with naturally high metabolic rates. For example, famous mukbangers like Tzuyang and Yuka Kinoshita are known for their high metabolism. But, only a lucky few can get this trait from their birth. No matter how much you try, you cannot just build up your metabolism.

Of course, despite numerous studies disproving the possibility, some still insist it's possible. Metabolism is something you acquire naturally; as you age, it will gradually slow down. Therefore, you can try to influence your metabolism, but only up to a point. Increasing your metabolic rate, maintaining an active lifestyle, and consuming green tea are all excellent examples.

  • The Benefits Of Intermittent Fasting

Many Mukbangers practice this fasting to keep themselves fit. If you practice intermittent fasting, you can eat normally and freely, unlike on a diet. Instead, it sets the timing for your meals. In this case, you'll do intermittent fasting and feeding. Some claim that fasting gives them additional energy after or during the fast.

Traditional Indian culture also places a strong emphasis on fasting. Some of you may have heard about it previously. You should avoid solid foods but can have liquids like water, tea, and coffee. At the very least, it should not be a sugary drink. Of course, you can also force some solid food in. However, the amount depends on your type of intermittent fasting.

You may take supplements (under your physician's and dietitian's supervision), but only if they do not contribute any calories to your diet. Intermittent fasting is a simple and effective method for cutting calories.

  • Maintaining A Daily Exercise Routine

Mukbangers can maintain a fit body despite their voracious appetites because so many spend at least an hour at the gym daily. Therefore, working out is crucial for keeping their weight stable.

So they exercise periodically—three to four times a week, even if you don't see them. Without this, it would be exceedingly challenging to keep their weight steady. In addition, if you regularly consume multiple meals' worth of fast food, it seems that you should also make time for regular exercise.

  • Faking The Entire Video

It may pop up in your mind while watching a mukbanger gorging on ridiculous amounts of food that they are just faking for views. However, this sudden thought may not be too far from the truth, as some videos are fake! For example, the famous Mukbang vlogger Eat with Boki was recently caught up in a rumor that she threw up food after pretending to eat it in front of the camera.

Perhaps it's a clever bit of editing. Maybe these mukbangers hide some food, then delete the relevant section before posting it online. Another possibility is that they put their fingers in their mouth after eating and then throw up. Keep in mind that what we see on screen is an idealized depiction of life, not the real thing.

Do Mukbangers Vomit After Eating?

Not all mukbangers vomit after eating on camera. But unfortunately, some mukbangers are known to throw away their food or hurl it out after their shooting is over.

At this point, it's common knowledge that not all Mukbang videos are 100% genuine. For example, many mukbang vloggers only eat food for the camera. So some will show that they are chewing in the video but then delete the scenes where they don't swallow. This strategy is to make the audience not click away after seeing them waste so much food.

However, Mukbangers usually do take a few bites out of what's on their plate. It's all about how they portray their eating endeavors to the viewers rather than what they are eating. Other mukbangers take extreme measures to make themselves throw up to keep themselves fit for the videos.

Can Mukbang Videos Trigger Your Eating Disorders?

While mukbangs can be energizing and fun for some people, they can also be highly triggering for others. Especially those who suffer from eating disorders like anorexia, bulimia, and binge eating may experience adverse reactions after watching these videos.

A quick look at the YouTube comments area is all it takes to realize the potential harm these videos can do to people with eating problems. Many viewers admit that they watch these films to eat vicariously or feel disgusted, so they won't want to eat. Especially if the person consuming a terrible amount of food is overweight, people either relate to them or feel repulsed by them.

The Mukbangs also intensify the all-or-nothing thinking about food. As a result, viewers may be left with the stark choice to either avoid eating entirely or gorge themselves to the point of becoming overweight. Mukbangs also normalize unhealthy eating habits for people with bulimia or binge eating disorders.

When mukbangers consume massive amounts of food without gaining weight, many suspect they engage in bulimic behavior. But this also leads to the impression that such bulimic behavior can successfully avoid the adverse health effects of binge eating.

Researchers claim that mukbang films "glorify binge eating" and should be fought against in the same way any content promoting addiction should be. Furthermore, these videos are harmful not just to viewers but also to artists and the media society.

Shocking content has become increasingly popular on social media, which helps its creators earn money by attracting a large audience. Thus, many choose Mukbang as their career, along with those with severe eating disorders. For instance, Nikocado Avocado. This infamous mukbang YouTuber makes a living by indulging in copious amounts of junk food and performing comedic routines.

Even if he receives severe backlash, all his videos are only there to garner more views. In an interview with James Marriot, another YouTuber, Nikocado says that he is aware of the abuse he receives online and that it is ruining his health. He knows he's destroying his life, but he can't break his habits because they bring him money.


Mukbang videos are trending more than ever recently, and more and more people are wondering what goes on behind the scenes. If you are not up-to-date with this trend, you might wonder, is mukbang considered an eating disorder? How do these mukbangers stay so thin?

Here I have answered all of your questions and more to satisfy your curiosity. Thanks for reading till now!

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