According to a survey by MasterCard, Gulf consumers were the top three spenders on restaurants — UAE diners spent an average of US$229 per month, Qataris averaged US$211 per month, and Kuwaitis spent US$196 per month. The same survey found that 88% of respondents said they dined in shopping mall food courts.
Last week I met a Kuwaiti customer whom I have known for last 10 years. He had lost weight considerably, after much hesitation I asked him, Is everything OK? You seem to have lost a lot of weight.
He smiled and said ‘Really? Do I look better now?
I replied ‘Yes, You must be on a very strict diet’
“No, I underwent surgery and had my intestine removed, now I can not eat like before, so I am losing weight. Finally I am happy to buy clothes in shops other than Kit-Kat” He went on and on about how life had changed for him after losing weight.
After he left, I paused for a moment, recently I had read about Kuwait being the second fattest country in the world after the USA, I wondered if this is the price we are paying for gorging on junk food in utter ignorance about the outcome. Removing the intestine to lose weight? REALLY??? Has it come this far that Kuwaiti’s and Expats now have to remove intestine to get off junk food and live a better life?
Recently my colleague told me how his son wouldn’t eat dinner without fries and fizzy drinks. I am not surprised, I too lived a unhealthy lifestyle until two years ago when I was diagnosed with colon cancer (Yep it took me a cancer to get off junk food) The fast food industry is already huge in Kuwait, every street has a junk food outlet, but this is just the tip of the iceberg; the (junk) food industry is planning to engulf Kuwait in a gigantic way. If this report is true, in the next five years Kuwait and other Middle Eastern countries will witness unparalleled increase of junk food outlets.
But I don’t blame the fat food industry, we only have ourselves to blame, like cigarettes, junk food too is a choice, if we don’t wake up now, our children will live shorter lives than us.