Let them Eat Cake?

The Lempert Report
January 25, 2023

Phil: There's a new report from the Food Standards Agency that comes out of England about why we might wanna keep away from that cake at office parties. What's up with that? I like cake 

Sally: I do too. I love cake. It's the only reason I go to weddings. But yeah, there are two different sides to this story and two different opinions here from food experts and doctors One side is that bringing cake in, bringing sweets in for special occasions now isn't so special anymore that they're just, they're happening all the time. I guess if you have a big office and you have birthdays being celebrated all the time, or anniversaries or special occasions, then that cake is constantly coming in. And the theory is that it's much like smoking at the office, that you are actually, doing something that is not supportive for your environment. Now, on the other side, there are other experts that feel that we need to rely on our power of choice, and that, you know, if someone wants to bring cake into the office, then you have free will to choose to abstain from that dessert. 

Phil: But here's the issue, and I've been in this circumstance, you know, recently where somebody brings in cake and you don't want it for whatever reason. And the look on their face, you know, almost makes you want to cry and just eat the cake just so that they don't feel bad. So we've got that whole guilt feeling going on too. And you know how, I guess the question is, how do you properly communicate when somebody brings in a cake or an ice cream cake for an office event that just says, "Hey, I'm on a diet, I just don't want it. I just don't want the calories," whatever. And I think that's probably the biggest problem and the biggest situation that we've got in dealing with this. We know that if people don't normally eat cake and somebody has cake or cookies in the office, people will nibble on 'em. 

Phil: We saw, you know, at Google and a lot of these other tech companies that were giving out free food that you'd have people eating just because it was there versus that they were actually hungry or needed the nourishment, and in many cases they actually gained weight. So we have to be smart about this as well. And it's really about that communication.