TLC's show "Freaky Eaters" was a show in TLC hosted by psychotherapist Mike Dow and nutritionist J.J. Virgin which helps food addicts.
Daniel (Addicted to Raw Meat)
Daniel has been obsessed with raw meat the past six years.
As weird as this sounds, Daniel's brother Bryant is used to his brother's quirky nature. Even as a kid, Daniel ate raw foods such as raw biscuit dough and pancake batter.
This obsession would later graduate to raw meat. Daniel would regularly feast on cheap cuts of raw chicken and beef several times a week without any preparation whatsoever. Daniel could not even be bothered to at least buy fresh premium meat. He would just eat them straight from the package.
Food poisoning is no joke as 48 million people get sick from food poisoning every year.Among this, 128,000 people are hospitalized and 3,000 people die.
The big danger in raw meat are bacteria such as salmonella and Escherichia coli (E. coli).
Daniel was born to a strict military family. While his brother Bryant followed his dad's footsteps, Daniel ended up as a liberal arts graduate who wanted to pursue writing.
He tried to be a government analyst but ended up quitting as this was not his true passion.
Dr. Mike Dow, a psychotherapist, and J.J. Virgin, a nutritionist, try to help Daniel cure his addiction. J.J. explains to Daniel that he acquired parasites from the raw meat and stopping his raw meat diet can help him get a six pack.
Daniel then starts to cook his food and even volunteers to cook for a local soup kitchen.
It ends with Daniel doing some military exercises with his brother Bryant.
Nikki (Addicted to Corn Starch)
While a lot of people are addicted to a certain white powder cooked in a lab, Nikki is addicted to a different kind of white powder.
Nikki downs two boxes of cornstarch every day.
She got the habit during her pregnancy with her son Marquis. Once Marquis died due to a seizure, she regained the cornstarch habit.
Cornstarch was meant to be a thickener in soups, puddings or pie fillings or in order to enhance the texture of fried foods. It was not meant to be eaten as is by the spoonful.
Nikki has stashes of cornstarch all over the house in order to keep her addiction a secret from her family. Dr. Mike Dow compared it to stashes of heroin.
Dr. Mike Dow and J.J. Virgin try to convince Nikki to come clean with her husband Charles.
The two try to use shock therapy to wake Nikki up. They send her to a warehouse with a big vat of cornstarch. The cornstarch looks like cement and they try to cross it. The next thing they do is to unleash six months worth of cornstarch consumption and it looks like a volcanic eruption.
The treatment works and Nikki wants to make some changes.
Nikki admits her addiction to her husband Charles.
Dr. Mike Dow and J.J. Virgin try to wean Nikki off cornstarch by gradually decreasing her consumption.
They also have the couple write a letter to their deceased son as a form of closure.
Nikki and Charles are joined by Dr. Mike Dow and J.J. Virgin on a gondola where they release the letters to Marquis.
Since the two experts left, Nikki has cured her addiction.
Misty (Addicted to Tartar Sauce)
Tartar sauce was meant to be sauce for fish and chips and not to be a sauce for everything under the sun. Misty eats it out of the bottle and uses it on things such as waffles, cheese puffs, cupcakes, spaghetti and breakfast cereal.
She consumes one bottle a day and as much as ten a week and the calories from tartar sauce alone equal to fourteen thousand a week.
Misty has gained a significant amount of weight due to her addiction and she has not dated in five years.Her weight gain has hurt her self esteem.
Misty is a single mom and her kids are disgusted at her tartar sauce addiction. Her kids open up to her about her feelings and gains motivation to change her ways.
Dr. Mike Dow and J.J. Virgin show Misty five vats of tartar sauce which contain forty gallons each. They pour it unto a kid sized swimming pool and asked Misty to wade through the kiddie pool partially filled with tartar sauce. Misty then becomes disgusted at the tartar sauce.
J.J. Virgin then suggest alternative dips such as pesto, honey and yogurt which are much healthier than tartar sauce.
Misty then starts changing her diet and goes on speed dating.
She has since quit eating tartar sauce.
Daniel (Addicted to Maple Syrup)
There is nohing more Canadian than maple syrup.
However, the brand of maple syrup Daniel is using, Log Cabin, is not real maple syrup. It is mostly corn syrup, sugar and flavoring.
He consumes two cups of artificial maple syrup a day and uses it on everything he eats from pizzas to lasagna to bananas.
Daniel got his first taste of maple syrup when his grandma made them waffles on the weekends and got the habit of adding maple syrup to what he ate at age seven.
The maple syrup reminded him of his grandma.
Diabetes ran in Daniel's family and continuing to gorge on maple syrup would have adverse effects on Daniel's health.
The whole family has tried to set Daniel straight to no avail. David, Daniel's brother, has reach out to Freaky Eaters in order to get help.Dr. Mike Dow and J.J. Virgin then meet Daniel and try to help him but Daniel is very aggressive and stubborn.
He thinks the two experts should mind their own business.
The two experts then show Daniel a container van with nine hundred twelve pounds of sugar.
J.J. Virgin explains to Daniel he is consuming two thousand calories worth of sugar a day.
Dr. Mike Dow and J.J. Virgin then show Daniel one hundred and four gallons of maple syrup and have him throw it out in the trash.
J.J. then shows Daniel that his body is twenty one percent body fat and tries to exercise with him.
Daniel, who used to play baseball, could barely do sit-ups.
In order to wean Daniel off maple syrup, J.J. offers him some healthier sauces. He ends up liking the peach salsa.
Dr. Mike Dow and J.J. Virgin bring Daniel to the hospital and introduce him to Michael, a dialysis patient. This could be Daniel's future if he doesn't change.
Daniel drastically reduces his maple syrup consumption and starts to coach a local baseball team.
Whitney (Addicted to Liquids)
For the past eighteen months, Whitney has been eating liquid food only. She only drinks eight ounces worth of liquids a day.
Unfortunately, her youngest daughter has picked up her dangerous eating habits.
The average female adult needs one thousand six hundred calories calories a day but Whitney only takes in two hundred calories a day.
The reason Whitney stopped consuming solid foods is that she was invited by her mom to a steak dinner and she choked on a piece of steak.
She became blue and purple and was only saved when her husband performed the Heimlich maneuver. From then on, she was traumatized.
Due to the lack of food intake, Whitney lost one hundred fifty pounds in five months, had nausea all the time and lacked energy all the time.
Dr. Mike Dow and J.J. Virgin then tries to help Whitney overcome her eating disorder.They show her a spread of food that shows how much the average person eats in a week.They also show her a wooden coffin where the experts ask her to place symbols of what she will miss if she passes away such as her daughter's graduation or her son becoming a fire fighter.
The two experts bring her to a medical facility where a swallowing and throat specialist shows Whitney through a video x-ray that she can swallow just fine and this is just a psychosomatic disorder.
J.J. Virgin then starts Whitney's road to recovery by giving her some powdered supplements that she can mix with water in order to drink. They also start Whitney off with some soft solid foods.
Whitney has since gained weight and has become more energetic ever since.
© 2021 Jan Michael Ong