Everybody loves filling up on delicious food, but for some, gluttony is more than a pastime—it’s a way of life. These kings and queens of consumption have taken eating to a new level, accomplishing feats of feasting that defy the imagination.
Of course, that doesn’t make these incredible alimentary maneuvers any less disgusting. If you’re eating anything, you might want to wait for a minute before reading the next few paragraphs.
First, there’s the woman who managed to put back 11 pounds of cheesecake in a mere nine minutes.
The simple fact that someone consumed nearly a dozen pounds of cheesecake in less than 10 minutes is impressive enough, but there’s another detail to this story that brings it into the realm of amazing: The woman in question, Sonya Thomas (a.k.a. “The Black Widow”), weighs only 105 pounds.
Yes, she literally consumed 10 percent of her body weight in cheesecake.
Thomas holds world records as a competitive eater, so while her feat was amazing, it was planned. Still, that didn’t make it easy.
“The cheesecake was very hard,” she told ESPN. “When I was eating it, it was not difficult, but
More recently, Joey Chestnut scarfed down a nausea-inducing 72 hot dogs in 10 minutes.
Widely considered one of—if not the—world’s pre-eminent competitive eater, Chestnut has come in first in the world-famous Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest ten times. In 2009, Chestnut set the world record for most hot dogs eaten in 10 minutes with 68. In July of this year, Chestnut raised the bar yet again, consuming an absolutely disgusting 72 hot dogs within the allotted time.
That’s impressive, to be sure, but it’s only part of Chestnut’s sizable resumé. The champion eater also put down 47 grilled cheese sandwiches in under 10 minutes on June 10, 2006, not to mention the 15 pounds of shrimp cocktail he ate in 8 minutes on Dec. 3, 2016. Some guys have all the talent.
Chestnut’s hot-dog-eating competitor, Takeru Kobayashi, once consumed almost 18 cow brains.
The professional competitive eater from Japan couldn’t quite make it all the way through cow brain number 18, which is understandable when you consider the fact that the average cow brain weighs about a pound. Luckily for Kobayashi, who holds eating records for hot dogs, pizza, and numerous other less-than-nutritious foods, the brain is one of the most nutrient-dense parts of a cow.
Lest you thought competitive eating was exclusively an individual sport, Kobayashi also teamed up with fellow competitive eaters Bob Shoudt, Kevin Strahle, and Patrick Bertoletti in September 2015 to eat an entire 40-pound goat in only 13 minutes and 22 seconds.
That’s a, uh, cooked goat, just to be absolutely clear. The goal was to break the World Series curse of the Chicago Cubs, and the Cubs did go on to win the baseball championship…one year later. Coincidentally, that’s probably how long it would take us to eat a 40-pound goat.
That too gross for you? Well, one English man ate 24 cockroaches in under a minute.
Ken Edwards of Glossop, Derbyshire, England, accomplished the feat on the set of Guinness World Records, a television show about…well, you can figure that out.
While the host noted that cockroaches are “a delicacy” in some countries, we have trouble believing that; cockroaches aren’t exactly rare, and they don’t exactly look appetizing. In any case, they’re certainly a good source of protein, and Edwards didn’t seem too disgusted by his task.
“Good luck, Ken, to eat your…” the host says before trailing off. “This is a little bit upsetting, so look away from your set.”
When a TV host tells you to look away from the set, you know that you’re in for a treat. If you can handle the video, here it is.
Anandita Dutta is all about the spice, and she proved it in an incredibly weird way.
Widely recognized as the world’s hottest pepper, the ghost pepper chili has become the focus of
While most people have a tough time getting even one of the peppers down, Dutta managed to consume 51 of them in less than two minutes. That isn’t even the craziest part. After she finished, Dutta rubbed 25 chilis’-worth of seeds in her eyes.
She didn’t shed a single tear. That’s, uh, impressive, we suppose. It also seems absolutely unnecessary.
“When I was five, I had a sore tongue, and my mother applied a
Then there’s the man whose nickname was simply “the Glutton.”
Way back in the first century, long before modern excesses made competitive eating a sport, Vitellius the Glutton was a superstar of excessive eating.
Described as a tall man with a “vast belly,” he was an unpopular ruler, and he started a war that he couldn’t win. While attempting to escape from enemy soldiers, he fled with nothing but two companions: a baker and a cook.
There are, however, those special feats that manage to impress both because of both the size and weirdness of what’s consumed.
France’s Michel Lotito, known in the world of competitive eating as Monsieur Mangetout, managed to consume an entire airplane. Yes, you read that right—Lotito ate an airplane.
In an impressive display of both strategy and commitment, Lotito cut the small plane (a Cessna 150) into bite-sized pieces and consumed them over the course of two years. To keep on schedule, Lotito had to eat approximately two pounds of aircraft per day. At least we know he was getting enough iron.
While Lotito was able to eat the plane without suffering ill effects, he apparently couldn’t digest bananas and hard-boiled eggs. He passed away in 2007 due to “natural causes,” although that might be because the coroner didn’t know how to work “ate an entire airplane” into his report.
The French soldier Tarrare was another historically significant glutton.
Psychologists now believe that this man, known simply as Tarrare, had a mental condition that compelled his legendary hunger. Tarrare was kicked out of his home for overeating, and soon, he was living on the streets, eating snakes, lizards, eels, and other live animals to attract crowds.
Eventually, he joined the army, where his incredible eating continued. His generals attempted to use his hunger as a weapon by having Tarrare swallow a locked box with a hidden message, then cross enemy lines. Unfortunately, he was captured and beaten; eventually, he sought medical help, but doctors couldn’t cure his insatiable appetite.
There’s much, much more to it than that, so if you’ve got a strong stomach—pardon the pun—you might want to check out our story on Tarrare, linked here.