Georgi Readman, an 18-year-old teenager from the Island of Wight, England survives only on cheap instant noodles, because she is afraid to eat other foods. The young hairdressing student goes through about 30 miles of noodles every year.
Georgi Readman got hooked on instant noodles when she was just five years old, after watching her older brother eat them, but they became her only source of nutrition after suffering a case of severe food poisoning at age eight. From that point on she couldn’t bring herself to eat any fruits or vegetables, and only occasionally diversified her diet with small bits of potatoes and chicken. Whenever she goes out shopping, Georgi’s mom always stocks up on 11p (¢16) packs of M Savers chicken noodles, because that’s the only brand she’s sure her daughter will eat. Any other kind of noodles might have green bits in them, so she would have to sieve them first. ”I always fancy noodles and could easily eat two packets at once. I’ve even eaten them dry and uncooked before,” Readman says. She has always been a fussy eater, but ever since her food poisoning as a child, Georgi claims she goes into a panic, sweats and starts heaving whenever she tries to swallow any fruits or vegetables.
Doctors have diagnosed Georgi Readman with Selective Eating Disorder, which means she can’t stand to eat anything else but the food she’s comfortable with for fear she might get sick. Unfortunately, her bizarre noodle diet has left her so malnourished that her doctor thought she had leukemia and told her she had the health of an 80-year-old woman. She suffers from a constant lack of energy and has a fragile immune system. The 5ft 3in tall girl acknowledges her problem, and wishes she could stomach something else besides chicken noodles. Her dream is to start eating normally, put on some weight and be able to go out with her friends without being embarrassed that they’ll see her freak out because of a salad. After repeated visits to the doctor, Georgi has been referred to a cognitive behavioral therapy expert who will hopefully help her overcome the bizarre fear of food.
Selective Eating Disorder has become more frequent in recent years, with cases of people eating only junk foods like pizza or potato chips and putting themselves at risk of anemia or other more serious conditions associated with lack of vitamins, iron or calcium. Most SED sufferers will only eat around 10 types of foods, but in extreme cases such as Georgi’s they’ll stick to just one or two.