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Man Dies in Company-Sponsored Pastry Eating Contest

A few months ago we noticed that competitive eating was a rapidly growing "sport": This year, 1.5 million people tuned in to ESPN to watch the Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Contest, and there's now a game, Major League Eating, available on the Nintendo Wii. Yet while it's entertainment for many, it comes at a cost for others. Yesterday, Saurab Sabharwal, a 22-year-old engineer at Nokia-Siemens in Gurgaon, India, died during a company-sponsored pastry eating contest held in the office cafeteria. After choking, he ran to the bathroom alone, and was found unconscious an hour later. Colleagues called for an ambulance, which rushed him to the hospital, where he was pronounced dead. This isn't the first death we've heard of from competitive eating. Last month, a Taiwanese student fell unconscious and died during a steamed bun eating contest.

Does this call for further measures to be taken, so that others don't get hurt? Should a medical expert have been mandated to stand by, just in case? Or should government officials consider placing a ban on eating contests?


Join The Conversation
Phunkometry Phunkometry 8 years
Yeah, if eating contests are banned, then they'll go "underground"! And they'll be even less safe. I think, as a rule--or, just out of common sense!!--there should be people watching to see if any of these people are choking or start to vomit or collapse...
remember-aurora remember-aurora 8 years
Lamest. Death. Ever. Steamed buns??? Really?
356UIK 356UIK 8 years
So when are they going to stop doing these things?
writerjenna writerjenna 8 years
I don't understand why people take part in eating contests anyway.
CaterpillarGirl CaterpillarGirl 8 years
our world is in a state? of what? that we cant have fun competitions?
bikinib7 bikinib7 8 years
I just don't understand how something so stupid draws such attention. Honestly, with our world in the state it is right now, is this seriously a necessary entertainment? It's just such a waste..
ilanac13 ilanac13 8 years
i understand that a lot of you guys are saying that it's not necessarily something that should be regulated, but think about it. this is like the 5th or 6th case that we've heard of this year and think about all the cases that we don't hear about. i think that people are too competitive and this is what results from that - and it's a shame. i know that people participate in these types of contests for sport and for fun, but when so many people are dying because of complications related to it, well that's just wrong to me, and i think that something needs to be done.
Advah Advah 8 years
I'm with Jude. In some parts of the world, some people die of hunger. Eating contests shouldn't be allowed.
looseseal looseseal 8 years
What a waste... of perfectly good pastries.
mod16 mod16 8 years
Marci Marci 8 years
I'm sort of repulsed by food eating contests, but to each his own. Having a doctor on hand sounds like a good idea to me.
Blackwidowchick Blackwidowchick 8 years
Choking has nothing to do with how much you have eaten. I eat my lunch at work at a lightning speed since I don't really get a break. In all reality I could choke on my one bowl of grilled chicken salad.
justanerd1975 justanerd1975 8 years
See? A man's pride always does him in!! He couldn't let the person next to him know that he was CHOKING TO DEATH?!? MAN!! Or maybe there is the kind of choking that one thinks they can handle on their own, with some unglorious coughing up...and then, it proves unfruitful- but only after it is too late to go for help- OMG, I'm freaking myself out! I need to stop! My @ss would be chocking the MF next to me to get his attention to help me! They should def. have had a medic on hand!
Manoukia Manoukia 8 years
Jude C, I agree. One can't put a ban on stupidity!
tlsgirl tlsgirl 8 years
Uh, yeah, I'm totally with Jude C on this one.
krae85 krae85 8 years
um, choking has nothing to do with over-eating. You could choke on your first bite. I think companies should explain the heimlech maneuver before hosting eating contests and keep an eye out for anyone in need of help.
krae85 krae85 8 years
how awful, people are too proud to ask for help when choking so they'd rather die??
gabiushka gabiushka 8 years
Thank you Jude C. It is horrible to say but these people are idiots.
Jude-C Jude-C 8 years
The harsh and Darwinian part of me says that if someone chooses to eat so damn much that they die from it, then that's their choice. The government shouldn't have to ban eating contests altogether. It would be good to have a doctor standing close by, though.
CaterpillarGirl CaterpillarGirl 8 years
No one saw him get up, and run to the bathroom? and the fact that he didnt come out? nice friends! just because someone dies doesnt need to ruin it for the rest of the world. Yes for gods sake have a doctor standing by or a "eating buddy" who will notice if your freaking choking to death!! There is a reason why most pro competitive eating people practice,and drink alot of fluids.
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