Let Us Eat Cake…Please?

Why is it so socially inappropriate to eat dessert before your main meal, and why can’t we?


Michele Hutchinson

The holiday where you can eat lots of cake with little judgement. Flash back to my 7th birthday party with Caroline Howe and Rielly.

Macy Hutchinson, Staff Writer

There is nothing like going out to dinner with your family, wolfing down your dinner, then patiently patiently waiting for the waiter to bring over your dessert.

I have always wondered why it is so socially inappropriate to order cake before steak. Now you may be thinking this is just my inner child speaking, but I promise it’s not. I am nearly 18 years old and I still want créme brûlée before my fish filet.

I mean no one judges you when you eat birthday cake for dinner. Why can’t that happen all the time? I think Allie Craig from the movie Remember Me got it right. What if you die mid meal, then you would not get the one part of the food that you wanted the most, so why wait.

Well, what if eating your dessert first was actually good for you despite popular belief.

In Ancient Indian cultures, it is a rule that we eat the sweet treats first. Ayurvedic is the traditional Hindu style of medicine. This principle suggests that we must eat in an order of taste; meaning we eat, sweet, sour, salty, pungent, bitter, astringent.

Macy and Gabe in a way sharing a lovely dessert from Sugar at Foxwoods. (Michele Hutchinson)

By eating in this order it helps satisfy the six tastes we have thus allowing us to stay healthier over all. Foods that only have one singular taste or little taste can lead us to the path of many health problems.

Ayurveda eating also suggests that dessert contains earth and water elements, which are the heaviest natural elements making it the hardest to digest. So if you eat dessert first your body’s digestive power is at its highest, the most powerful, making your body stronger allowing the easier digestion of the heavier elements. 

Eating sweets after eating is what slows down one’s metabolism, causing diabetes, obesity, thyroid disorders, and PCOS, or Polycystic ovary syndrome. 

According to Doctor Smita Naram, it is better for your digestion to follow the Ayurvedic styles of eating. In a study performed, if you end your meal with dessert just like most of society does then, then dessert will react with the acid causing bloating, acidity, and gastric obstruction.

So if you go out to dinner and never order dessert because that’s what makes you feel gross and bloated, then try eating dessert first.

A study was done on this exact question. They offered 134 University staff members a cup of fruit as dessert after the main dish, or a lemon cheesecake before the main dish.

Some yummy homemade apple pie served a la mode made by the one and only Susan Pontbriand (Michele Hutchinson)

It turns out 70% of people who chose the cheesecake first chose the healthier meal. Instead of choosing a bunch of fried food, they chose something like chicken fajitas with a side salad. The people who chose the cheesecake actually ate 250 fewer calories than the people who chose the fruit.

One third of the people who chose the fruit cup actually chose the chicken fajitas and a side salad. Sadly that only about 45 people, 45 out of 134.

Though unfortunately dessert contains a lot of sugar, tends to be high in fat and have a lot of empty calories. Causing you to fill up fast, and not on stuff that is good for you like, lean meat, veggies, fruit.

That’s still not saying it is bad for you. Here in America we have things that are super sized, but anything in small amounts can be good for you, especially dessert.

So stop skipping dessert and just eat it first! I promise you it will not disappoint.