Sunday, January 11, 2009

Pratik's Junk Food Law

Junk Food Law :

"Junk food is delicious, but only upto around 2 portions.*"

(* "portion" varies from junk food to junk food.)

I'm not a huge junk food junky... but I do like pizza, fries, chips, samosas, cookies, chocolates, puffs, muffins etc...

After extensive research and experimentation, I've noticed a pattern...
The first bite is always the best... and the second is pretty darn good too! In fact the entire first piece is yum! Tastes good, feels good... makes you wanna go for another portion. You bite into the second one - hmm... still good... but by the time you finish the second portion, the "yummyness per bite" has started to go down...
You might go for another (3rd) portion and then suddenly you'll notice this small component of "yuckiness" with each bite... (usually the side effect of oil, refined starch etc...) Now as you keep going, "yumminess per bite" keeps dipping slowly, while "yuckiness per bite" goes way up.

Any more junk and you are so going to regret it within the next hour - depending on the particular choice of junk, its going to be acidity, nausea, sugar rush or feeling like you've got a brick in your stomach.

My research shows that everyone in general responds to Junk Food this way... Some people are more tolerant of Junk (their Junk Food Threshold is higher), but in general, this pattern seems to be pretty universal.

After tons of experimenting, I'm proud to present...
Pratik's recommended junk food amounts :
Pizza - 2 slices.
Subway Cookies - 3/4th for single chocolate, and 1/2 for double chocolate.
Blueberry Muffins - 1.25 (this one's tricky)
French Fries - about 5- 10 fries max.
Cake - 2 pieces max!
Samosas - 1 (I can't do more without feeling queasy, unless I'm starving and it's fresh + hot)
Potato Chips - about 5 - 10 chips max.
Kurkure - about 5 - 8 crisps.
Chaat - exactly one plate. No more, or you'll regret it!
Paani Pooris - about 5.

Heat Caveat : [1]
When the junk is fresh/hot, the apparent "yum" factor goes up, and the apparent "yuck" factor shrinks. Hence it's very easy to cross the Junk Food Threshold at such times... You might regret it after an hour, but very often, it is totally worth it! ; )

Pratik's Junk Food Principle :

- Thou shalt under no circumstances eat junk food past the Junk Food Threshold.
- For optimal enjoyment of yum vs yuck, stop 25% short of the Junk Food threshold.
- The only exception is when both you're starving & the junk food is rare + fresh + hot + super yum.
- Always get your junk fresh and hot for maximum Yum!

All right, time to junk out now! : )

[1] I know they don't rhyme... But I'm sure at least a couple of people will think they do... ; )


Sasidhar said...

LOL. Nice analysis dude!

Vikas said...

kaam nahi hai kya ??

Anonymous said...

hey that's nice.helped me for my son's fancy dress competition..

Anonymous said...

with this theory, theres this strange resemblance between Barney Stinson n u...the only diff being his theories are almost always(read:99.99%) based on girls!!!

Pratik Stephen said...

@Shashi : Thanks! : ) Its the result of years of experimentation, hundreds of burps, and lots of acidity.
: )

Pratik Stephen said...

@ Anonymous Parent : Thanks! : )
So what are you dressing your son up as? A slice of pizza? Cheezy! ;)

Dhruv said...

LOL! Good stuff man! I like the way you've approached this. Very organized and thoughtful :)

pooozzzzpah said...

Because I'm too junked out in the head after tuesday-from-hell, and because fb led me here, I wish to express appreciation through an fb style 'thumbs up-i like' :D

Pratik Stephen said...

@Dhruv : Thanks mate! : )

@Pooja : I appreciate the appreciation... : )
I give you permission to Share it on facebook if you like... ; )

And cheers to a better Wednesday!

Anonymous said...

1.25 for bluebery muffins?? You HAVE paid attention to data collection. I like it, I like it :D

Pratik Stephen said...

This has been extensively tested. On humans that too. Human i mean. His name is Pratik.
: )

Rusty said...

There is a law in economics known as law of dimnishing returns... And conincidently when i studied it in 11th the example given to us was with Pani Puri...

Rishi Raj said...

Is the recommended food amount for any one line item at a time or for all the items at a time?

Also, Im so sure the junk food threshold would change if the food was free. So add that in your heat caveat.

Pratik Stephen said...

This post started from conversations about the free snacks (total junk) we get at Microsoft every evening.
It's even more important to exercise constraint then! : )

Recommendations are 1 line item at a time only!

Pratik Stephen said...

@Rusty : You're right! It is the law of diminishing returns!

The weird part is I (we?) often tend to go past the point of no returns into the point of acidity before I stop with Junk food! : )

Anonymous said...

Ingenious. You write brilliantly. Love your Witnessed Series especially. Make sure you get a copyright on that one :)

Good Luck !

Pratik Stephen said...

Thanks Anonymous! : )