Chinese Buffets and Fat Men Don’t Mix

Chinese Buffet Food
Photo Courtesy of MidtownLunch

Buffets were created by the devil! Not literally, but it sure does feel like it sometimes. I have a history with buffets. In high school I would go to the same buffet every week. It was a ritual that some of us “bigger” guys on the football team partook in. After high school I would still go about 2 to 3 times a month to a Chinese buffet with friends. It was something we would do when we were bored. Nothing to do on a Saturday afternoon, head out to the China Wok buffet. All you can eat for about $8.

Now in my adult years I haven’t been to as many buffets as I am accustomed to, but I have still made it to some. The craziest ones are on cruise ships: Mounds and mounds of food, all you can eat, all day! Bad mix for a fat guy. Especially if you are still mentally too weak to fight it off. Now a buffet every now and then is okay, but don’t make it a habit. Some, if not all of the foods, are not the healthiest. I know there are fruits, veggies, and healthy meats, but more often than not the food at buffets isn’t prepared with the most care.

So what am I getting at you ask? I met up with a couple of friends recently. I really wanted to see them since it had been a while. Unfortunately, they wanted to meet up at the local Chinese buffet. I immediately knew that it was a disaster waiting to happen. Israel at a buffet? BAD IDEA. I usually go for 4 rounds. That’s a minimum. And doesn’t include the dessert plate. Reluctantly I headed out to meet them.


Side note: Have you noticed that there are so many fat, overweight, usually morbidly obese people eating at buffets and fast food restaurants? I know I have seen it and it’s alarming. When will these folks realize enough is enough?

I must say that I did very well. I only had 3 plates of food. Now hear me out, it wasn’t really that bad. The first plate had some greasy chicken, some rice, and an egg roll. The second was just 4 pieces of sushi. The last was 2 servings of chocolate covered marshmallows with graham crackers, of which I am proud to say I only ate one. That isn’t that bad is it?

Fat People at Buffets
Photo Courtesy of Jaymosch

I knew I would give in to the temptation. The trick was to accept it and move on. How do you combat the weaknesses associated with buffets? Don’t put yourself in a position to fail. Don’t act like you wont cave in. Accept it. Eat until you are full, then stop. Also, I learned that getting up several times is sort of embarrassing, especially if you’re a fat person. So I made sure to only get up a few times. It’s a good idea to select something healthy to go along with whatever else you choose to eat. That way there’s somewhat of a “balance.” I would suggest to not let your friends influence you. If they know that you are on a mission to get in shape, lose weight, and lose fat they would probably be less likely to want to go to an all you can eat buffet.

But the best advice I can give from my personal experience regarding Chinese buffets is…


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About the Author

My name is Israel Lagares. I used to be the kind of guy that was always in shape, but over the last few years I've fallen off tremendously. This site is my final attempt to get back into shape. So far I've lost 70.4 lbs. Check out my weight loss chart, weight loss videos and progress pics. Follow my journey, those of others, and read our thoughts on various health topics. Share your thoughts, experience, and journey here on FMU.

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  1. no doubt. I cannot avoid the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th plate… no buffets… I am back on a diet and exercise regimine starting today.

    • IsraelNo Gravatar says:

      Welcome back man, I was wondering what happened to ya. I remember when I first started FMU, you were the first to show some link love.;)

    • I went on a cruise last year and the buffets are 24 hours with fresh food constantly being added. It was hard for me to eat healthy during those 10 days. The same goes for Vegas, where I just got back from. Late at night when you’re all gambled out and looking for a bite to eat – the hotel buffets stare at you in the face and you need to go and pig out. I’m hitting the gym hard this week!

  2. NicoNo Gravatar says:

    The funny thing is, you hardly ever start feeling full eating these fatty chinese dishes.

    By the time you start slacking your belt, you probably ate about 500 or 1000 calories to much :o)

  3. Haha…excellent. My girlfriend is a Chinese Buffet Groupie! Unfortunately (and fortunately…yum πŸ™‚ ) we must vacate these places several times a month. A cool trick I’ve learned is to pace myself creatively; this advice is given with the assumption that most of the foods in the trough are fatty and greasy, so WHAT is eaten won’t necessarily be as large of a factor. I try to extend each plate to At Least a half hour per plate…if it hasn’t been at least 30 minutes since a sat down and the plate is gone, I force myself to have a conversation with the woman before getting up until 30 minutes is up. The benefit? Not only will the pace help you digest the food in a healthier manner, you’ll also feel full faster, allowing you to eat less food. Also, a quick tip would be to eat the low-fat and high protein foods first…try to eat a whole grain rice and some lean chicken and veggies before digging into the good stuff…good luck!

  4. weight lossNo Gravatar says:

    I am a Chinese, and China has many good traditional health methods.

  5. angilinaNo Gravatar says:

    I am reading this post when its too late for me to stop eating buffets. I am already quite fat πŸ™‚

    Anyway, I great advice πŸ™‚

  6. johnNo Gravatar says:

    Indeed, they are dens of caloric evil!!!!

  7. Andrew ScottNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Israel,

    I have been busy reading through your blog. I started a similar journey this year. Weight 302lbs and a stressed out ticker I had to make a choice to lose the weight.

    I have linked you to my blog and will be keeping up with your progress. Your blog is an inspiration and confirmation that it can be done, one day at a time.

    Take care!

    • IsraelNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Andrew, your name reminds me of one of my favorite books writes, Orson Scott Card. Just saw your site, it looks great and your dedication and progress definitely show. Keep that up and you will make it to your goal in no time.

  8. Dr. KalNo Gravatar says:

    In my bigger days, I spent alot of time at Chinese Buffets. I’d eat my weight in Genteral Tso Chicken and BBQ Spare Ribs. I miss those days sometimes, but I’m better off not going.

  9. meachelNo Gravatar says:

    Well its nothing wrong having buffet once in a while but not certainly often.As it will take toll on ur health as you tend too eat alot on buffet lunch and dinners.

  10. Israel,

    I’m actually eating from a Chinese Buffet right now and I thought of the blog. What I did was have them give me a box to go for a flat rate and just filled it once; I just got back to the office and started eating now so I don’t have the choice to go back up for more.

  11. Another thing I thought of…dude, learn how to eat with chopsticks…it paces you because you can’t eat as fast!

  12. I fell victim again tonight! Man, I’m bad at this…one plate only though; someone ought to go in with an incredible appetite and eat the places dry; much too tempting…


  13. Tea BenefitsNo Gravatar says:

    I live in China now. Great article. I will have a try.

  14. Need fiberNo Gravatar says:

    Funny! Reminds me of a story not to long ago about an obese man who was not allowed to return because he ate too much from the buffet. I believe it happened in NY…

  15. JeffNo Gravatar says:

    I just can’t believe the amount of obese people that go to these places. I mean Im not exactly skinny and I love buffets but when you see these 300-400 pound people coming in, I wonder what they are thinking. I love the ones who give the excuse “I have a metabolic disorder” A disorder? Well when you are consuming 6,000 or more calories in one meal, and sitting on your ass all day because you are on disability and too fat to work. To me that means, PUT THE FORK DOWN! Its funny how our society looks at beauty in our country. A size zero is acceptable, but we have the most obese people in our country than the world……Something to think about…

  16. ScottNo Gravatar says:

    Buffets are murder for me. All of the suggestions for exercising control are great, but they don’t work for me. The only solution? STAY AWAY!!

  17. JoeNo Gravatar says:

    There are others just as bad as Chinese buffets. Around here we have the Amish style buffets which have just about everything you want that’s not good for you. I’m not sure what you call the Golden Corral and Ryans buffets but we have them too. I love going to all of them but then again I’m about 70 pounds overweight or so.

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