Help me eat a lot of meat.
December 27, 2005 11:51 AM   Subscribe

Can you help me eat a lot of meat fast?

My brother-in-law and several friends have proposed a contest to see who can eat the most White Castle Burgers in a set period of time. This type of event has happened before: the last event was the "Flapjackoff". Anyway, he and another friend can put away some serious amounts of food. They look to be the obvious candidates for a win. We're discussing a time span of about one hour. One guy thinks he can put away 60-75 of these Slyders. Well, I might just be stupid enough to try this. And, if I go in, I'm going in to win. The catch is I'm a vegetarian of almost 20 years. This would be my one and only time to eat meat. For the comedic value of the vegetarian winning the contest it might just be worth it.

What I'd like from you are competitive, training, survival and any other tips that you can offer. Well? What are you waiting for? Help me eat a lot of meat.
posted by horseblind to Food & Drink (47 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
I can only plead that you not do this. The irony, I admit, would be grand, but you will be in GI hell for no less than 3 days afterwards if you try this.
posted by jmgorman at 11:56 AM on December 27, 2005


Competitive eating -- "Tactics and training." (albeit for hot dogs, but likely apply).
posted by ericb at 11:58 AM on December 27, 2005


If you've been a vegetarian for long enough, chances are that your body no longer has the proper enzymes, in the proper quantities, to break down the meat correctly. Thus, you'll get ill.

A friend of mine was vegetarian for a year, then ate a cheeseburger. Bad, bad mistake; he was ill for a couple of days. I'd try eating a small amount of beef, and make it high quality beef, to see how your body reacts to it. If you're fine, you may be able to do the contest. If you get ill, pounding down sliders will just make you more miserable.
posted by spinifex23 at 12:00 PM on December 27, 2005


are you sure that your vegetarian gut has the enzymes it takes to properly digest/break down animal protein?
posted by matteo at 12:00 PM on December 27, 2005


The vegetarians I've talked to said eating meat after abstaining caused them to be seriously sick. At least eat meat as soon as possible and incorporate it into your diet before your OD.
posted by geoff. at 12:00 PM on December 27, 2005


As well-covered, most lapsed vegetarians will tell you they tend to get at least a little ill when eating meat again for the first time in a long while--and that's when eating good meat. White Castle burgers, bless them, are known for stressing the GI tracts of those of us who consume meat regularly.

I think you'll probably rupture.

Still, this is one of those AskMe threads that absolutely demands a followup when the deed's done. Have your living-will executor post it! :)
posted by Drastic at 12:06 PM on December 27, 2005


I will echo the advice of others that you make sure your body can digest beef before attempting to eat a lot of it.

In addition to the techniques noted in the wikipedia article ericb linked to, I think one of the techniques is to drink prodigious amounts of water, to get your stomach accustomed to holding a lot, but without actually putting any calories in it.
posted by adamrice at 12:10 PM on December 27, 2005


thoughts:

1. Stretch your stomach regularly before the event. Ideally you'd be stretching it with cheesy meat, but if you want to avoid feeling fat or spending a lot of money, diet soda will do (the Sonya Thomas method). You could use water but personally, after a few cups of plain water, I'm ready to puke it up.

2. Ditto what others have said about eating an unfamiliar food in large quantity. If you can't practice on cheeseburgers before the event, consider taking some digestive enzyme pills and/or a nausea/diarrhea-suppressing medication, if that's going to be allowed.

3. My personal observation about eating a lot: start hard (before your gut realizes how much food you've put in), and once you start to feel full, pace yourself for the remaining 45 minutes. Above all, keep swallowing! Keep the food moving down and suppress the urge to let stuff up.

Let us know how it goes! Did you do OK in the flapjack-off?
posted by rxrfrx at 12:19 PM on December 27, 2005


Your main problem is not the beef, but the White Castle. Beef would be a problem for a vegetarian, but White Castle would be a problem for anyone. Like, a big problem.

I definitely recommend eating beef, and White Castle in particular, well beforehand. Start with a small amount of good-quality ungreasy beef you cook yourself, and work up to one small White Castle burger. When you puke (and you will), you will have a new perspective on this contest.

My survival tips: Hold this contest in the bathroom. Preferably while seated (yes, already). Before the contest, stock the bathroom with all the supplies you'll need for a week; Pepto-Bismol is a good start, as is water to prevent dehydration. Also, be sure to clear your schedule for a week after the contest. This is what I, as a happy beef-eater, would do if I were going to compete in this contest. Good luck surviving.
posted by booksandlibretti at 12:21 PM on December 27, 2005


FWIW, I did not participate in the flapjack-off. I did not know my brother-in-law at the time of that event. The winner ate 13 flapjacks. Jumping jacks in the parking lot were supposed to follow the eating as part of the event. No one did jumping jacks. Several contestants were puking in the parking lot instead.
posted by horseblind at 12:25 PM on December 27, 2005


I can't speak for you but as a vegetarian (16 yrs), I wouldn't attempt this even for the "funny" aspect should you win. Why? Because if I didn't win (and chances are I wouldn't), I'd regret it for a very long time.
posted by dobbs at 12:27 PM on December 27, 2005


If you go thru with this I think you will regret it. Especially if you don't currently eat a lot of dairy. I have never been a full-on vegetarian but there was a point in my life where I ate very few animal products. I was taking in next to no animal fat. Every once in a while I would get a severe craving for pepperoni pizza. I'd give into the craving and have a small pizza delivered. Almost as soon as I finished I would fall asleep (more like passout) and the next day I would feel something akin to a hangover.
posted by Carbolic at 12:37 PM on December 27, 2005


Maybe drink a ton of coke while you're at it? Drinking a lot of pop gives me almost instantaneous diarrhea. If you're willing to shit your pants while you are still seated and competing, you just may pull it off. The pant shitting will make the whole thing extra hilarious. (and may even turn some of your competitors off of their burgers).

Good Luck!
posted by davey_darling at 12:38 PM on December 27, 2005


Watch your immune system during the training.

Ditto suggestions of starting with lean, high-quality beef. Start with small portions, then build on your success. After you can deal with good beef, work in a Wendy's single, then BK, then McD. Get through this okay, then try a Whitey.

Once you recover, and feel good to go, try a six-pack of sliders. Avoid their sugary drinks. Get something like tea to wash it down.

Train train train. Good stuff, but you gotta work up to it.

And yes, REPORT BACK.
posted by mumeishi at 12:51 PM on December 27, 2005


If you've been a vegetarian for long enough, chances are that your body no longer has the proper enzymes, in the proper quantities, to break down the meat correctly. Thus, you'll get ill.

I've heard this many times as well, but it doesn't mesh with my experience (vegan for 6 years, no problem eating dairy again after that time*, then vegetartian for 3 years, and also no problem eating meat after that time.) Can someone point to more official word on this that's not anecdotal?

* And i went from eating no dairy to eating LOTS of dairy -- i took a trip to europe and figured I wouldn't have much fun being vegan there, and I was right
posted by fishfucker at 12:55 PM on December 27, 2005


that said, I HAVE had problems last time I ate white castle burgers. Whether the vegetarianism makes it an issue or not, you will not be happy that day (and possibly the next).
posted by fishfucker at 12:56 PM on December 27, 2005


Please tell me you're doing this in public somewhere.
posted by pieoverdone at 12:58 PM on December 27, 2005


Because I will TOTALLY come and watch this.

btw the s. kingshighway white castle is gone.
posted by pieoverdone at 12:59 PM on December 27, 2005


I eat an awful lot of meat, but not so much fast food (maybe twice a year). I had three -- only three! -- White Castle burgers two weeks ago (which, as always, were mind-blowingly delicious) and my GI tract hasn't been right since. It's actually somewhat disturbing. Don't do this if you ever want to poop normally again.
posted by uncleozzy at 1:07 PM on December 27, 2005


Maybe drink a ton of coke while you're at it? Drinking a lot of pop gives me almost instantaneous diarrhea

I think you're alone in that. Also, for most people pop greatly reduces the amount of food they can eat, because it expands in their stomach.
posted by delmoi at 1:07 PM on December 27, 2005


The training you do should depend on the duration of the event. If it is really going to be a full hour, then it might be worth aclimating yourself to rich, disgusting greasy meat and white bread.

If it is shorter, like 15 or 30 minutes then I'd just focus on building stomach capacity. So what if you are sick for 3 days afterwords? You have to weigh that off against eating horrid greasy meat "food" during the training period.
posted by Good Brain at 1:09 PM on December 27, 2005


Can someone point to more official word on this that's not anecdotal?

I've always assumed it's probably not true, but there's so much anecdotal evidence for it, it's something to certainly be prepared for, should it occur.

I mean, I can't quite imagine what enzymes one would need to digest beef and cheese that one doesn't get from eating soy and cheese. Furthermore, on a 60-minute timescale, it's more about the speed at which your mouth and stomach can physically break the food down and empty it to the intestines... by the time the real enzymatic work gets going the contest will be mostly over.
posted by rxrfrx at 1:24 PM on December 27, 2005


If someone had said that a vegetarian eating meat would get sick I might have called bullshit, were it not for personal experience. Whatever the reason, and I suspect it has more to do with the gallbladder, a long abstinence from meat broken by a sudden orgy of fatty, greasy, Grade F beef from Shite Castle may truly be your downfall. Please, for the love of science, go ahead with this and report back the results.
posted by docpops at 1:49 PM on December 27, 2005


The guys at the Nathan's hot dog contest every year develop a specific way to eat real fast- so practice ways that will help you get the stuff in your mouth and chewed up fast. Also, drinking soda will not help you, because it will fill up your stomach. The hot dog winner this year was behind for the count, until he let out a large belch that gave him more room in his stomach (the commentator reported this to the crowd watching).
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 2:04 PM on December 27, 2005 [1 favorite]


Whatever the reason, and I suspect it has more to do with the gallbladder

huh. Now that's an interesting idea, because i DID have my gall bladder removed a few years ago (come to think of it, troubled starting within a year after returning to omnivorism -- maybe even 6-8 months from the time). I'm well under 30, so in my case, the presence of gallstones was a pretty big medical anomaly (so much so that I had two doctors basically tell me that there's no way that I could have gallstones -- the second didn't really believe me until i came in with jaundiced skin.)

I did have phantom abdomen pains in my teens as well (while I was vegan), so it might have been a problem for some time, but it's possible that was something else.
posted by fishfucker at 2:10 PM on December 27, 2005


I've been a veggie for 30 years but have eaten meat once in a while - don't ask - and my view is that whole "you don't have the enzymes" "you'll be ill for a week" stuff is false. Didn't happen to me after the burger or the steak.
posted by A189Nut at 2:50 PM on December 27, 2005


This is simply a horrible horrible idea.

If your going to do it anyway, maybe take some probiotics that will aid in digestion?

This is simply a horrible horrible idea.
posted by parallax7d at 2:58 PM on December 27, 2005


This is simply a horrible horrible idea.

way to take all the fun out of fun eating contests.
posted by rxrfrx at 3:24 PM on December 27, 2005


Whether the enzymes things is true or not, is inconsequential. You know your body more than anyone else, and as stated before, this stuff won't be digested before the end of the one hour timeframe.

In terms of strategy, use the cliche: slow and steady. If you stop you won't start up again. And also don't worry about the "burger count" around the beginning. If your opponent goes hard at the beginning, then you go hard at the end.

If you really wanna win this do not think of the consequences once that hour is over. Focus on the simple fact that you have 60 minutes, and your opponent says he can thrown down 60 burgers.

Work out an average, or keep a schedule. Good organization and math can beat out sure firepower anyday.
posted by travosaurus at 3:30 PM on December 27, 2005


I was on the fence, but this won me over:

If you're willing to shit your pants while you are still seated and competing, you just may pull it off.

That's what I call the competitive spirit! Go for it, and post a video in this thread.
posted by languagehat at 3:35 PM on December 27, 2005


This should be posted under "Projects". Make sure you take lots of pictures, put up a website, and we'll post it to the blue!
posted by blue_beetle at 3:52 PM on December 27, 2005


One of the most important things my boyfriend taught me was that it is a very good idea to be within walking (or should that be running) distance of a bathroom after eating White Castle.

I'm a big meat eater and those sliders gave me bellyache like I've never had before.

Be prepared to be ill.
posted by essexjan at 4:13 PM on December 27, 2005


One: Kobayashi's method is to stretch out the stomach. He does it with water--gradually build the amount of water you can down in one sitting. I'm sure he'd have little problem downing a gallon or so...his stomach is huge.

Two: Eat some meat. Like now, after you read this. Maybe your body will react negatively to it, maybe it will have no problem at all. Best to find out now than after your first slider in the contest.

Three: You will get sick afterward. I've been eating meat all my life, and I love White Castle, but even I get sick after eating that stuff--everyone does. (But it tastes damn good when you're hungry).
posted by zardoz at 4:55 PM on December 27, 2005


Some more info:
Me: 6'0", 195 lbs, slender to medium build, moderate athleticism.
As of today, my doctor says I am fit for said contest and will prescribe anti-nausea medicine for after the event.

Opponent 1 (my brother-in-law): 5'11", 270 lbs, stocky build with large guns, claims he would look like Lou Ferrigno if he worked out. Anti-athletic unless chasing cheese.

Opponent 2 (friend of family): 6'2", weight unrecorded, a build that just might intimidate Butterbean. Laughs in the face of athleticism. Is known to call all vegetables "vile weeds".

This will be documented once a date is set both in in writing on the web (help me come up with a website name, please) and on video. I'll be sure to notify all here. And yes, this will be in a White Castle in the Saint Louis area. All are invited if this does indeed happen.
posted by horseblind at 5:09 PM on December 27, 2005


No real advice that hasn't been given before, but can you please keep some sort of blog on this issue? I would LOVE to see how this turns out. (And post up a link to MeTa or MeFi (if appropriate?).)

Thanks, and Good luck!
posted by ruwan at 5:10 PM on December 27, 2005



I would recommend deliberate and careful chewing combined with water and a steady pace

consider breaking up the burgers and "dipping" the buns the way competitive hotdog guys do
posted by Megafly at 5:12 PM on December 27, 2005


I did not have any GI problems after ingesting beef 15 years into vegetarianism. Neither did my two other "data points," both after at least 10 years of vegetarianism. None of us has ever ingested White Castle ever. I would suggest a lot of creative visualization ("I'm eating...I'm still eating...I'm getting full...but I'm eating through the fullness...I am continuing not to vomit...I will not end up like that guy on CSI or in that movie 7even...I am a beautiful animal...").
posted by unknowncommand at 5:13 PM on December 27, 2005


this stuff won't be digested before the end of the one hour timeframe.
+
Several contestants were puking in the parking lot instead.

We have a winning strategy, methinks. See if you can get the wording something along the lines "the number of slyders that pass contestants' lips" so that you get to count them twice.
posted by Aknaton at 5:14 PM on December 27, 2005


hmmm...maybe we should reschedule the st louis mefi meetup for this?
posted by slogger at 6:12 PM on December 27, 2005


This will be documented once a date is set both in in writing on the web (help me come up with a website name, please) and on video.

Well, www.suicidebyslyder.com seems to be available...
posted by NotMyselfRightNow at 6:45 PM on December 27, 2005


I also am doubtful about "enzyme deficiency" (a quick [very quick] perusal of pubmed doesn't lend any evidence to the inability to digest meat after prolongued abstainance).

However, I'd be worried about the amount of animal fat that you're going to be ingesting. Biochemistry aside, I'm worried about its physical properties (greasy). You'll probably want to have an emulsifier in your stomache.

Tea and alcohol can emulsify fats, but I'm not sure how/if they're effective enough.

If you haven't done so, drop by a Whiteburger at lunchtime - if the odours don't bother you, then there's a chance that you might not get psychologically/physicially ill. If however, just the smell makes you uncomfortable, I'd think about going through this endeavour again.

Yes, I posted mainly so it's be easier for me to check on this thread in anticipation of your report on the outcome =)
posted by PurplePorpoise at 7:59 PM on December 27, 2005


WWW.THEVEGETARIANWINS.COM is available...
posted by concreteforest at 8:51 PM on December 27, 2005


Please make a movie of your endeavor!
posted by ericb at 9:32 PM on December 27, 2005


Opponent 1 (my brother-in-law): 5'11", 270 lbs, ... Anti-athletic unless chasing cheese.

Opponent 2 (friend of family): 6'2", weight unrecorded, a build that just might intimidate Butterbean. Laughs in the face of athleticism. Is known to call all vegetables "vile weeds".



maybe you'll get lucky and they'll both die during the contest of a massive coronary. you'll win by default, and you'll just have to go change your soiled pants
posted by matteo at 6:22 AM on December 28, 2005


Tactics and training are only going to get you so far in this. Ultimately, it's gonna come down to simply wanting it more. Sure, start doing the things that others have suggested. I would also suggest some form of aerobic exercise 2 or 3 hours beforehand...as a distance runner I can attest to the primal hunger induced by a good long, hard run.

Nevertheless, it's gonna be more mental than physical. Don't think about the aftermath, it's gonna suck no matter what. When you're belly to the trough, though, just think about the next burger.
posted by jimmythefish at 3:02 PM on December 28, 2005


OK, this sounds totally gross, but strangely fascinating...

I'm surprised that nobody has mentioned (so far) that it may be a good idea to get your digestive system up and running full tilt in advance of the contest - i.e. eat something that's not going to fill you, but will trigger the production of lots of stomach acids.

Also, a bit of an icky thought, but you may want to consider having a massive system purge (laxatives certainly, maybe even emetics) prior to the scoff-off, too (perhaps first thing in the morning) followed by a short period of fasting (i.e. the rest of the day leading up to the feast). Not sure about everyone else, but my body seems to need to defecate almost immediately following the act of eating, irespective of the times between meals or the quantity eaten...

The comments about having to burp make me think that a lot of the strategy involved here revolves around eating and breathing steadily. Scarfing down the food really fast tends to mean that you'll swallow air at the same time. Burp city. Try to only swallow after fully inhaling - and keep that rhythm going.

I would say good luck, but - bleh! :-)

Disclaimer: I've never done anything like this before. I've never witnessed anything like this before. I've never even thought about anything like this before. I feel traumatised! My nickname stems from similar behaviour involving alcohol - much more simple, and generally a lot less messy!
posted by Chunder at 8:36 PM on December 29, 2005


If someone will host it, I'll *videotape* the contest.
posted by notsnot at 7:35 AM on December 30, 2005


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