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What Ordinary People Eat Around the World (21 Photos by Peter Menzel)


Peter Menzel had one of the coolest ideas ever – traveling the world to see what ordinary people eat and take lots of pictures! That’s how many of his photographs ended up in a book titled “What I Eat: Around the World in 80 Diets”. It’s very fascinating, for me personally, to see what people around the globe eat daily, and how their meals compare to mine. And trust me, it’s not all pizza and mac’n’cheese! Peter documented eating habits of people of various professions, cultures, customs and living standards across the world. So now, let’s check out a handful of the most interesting models from his book. Just for a reference, an average adult should eat around 2000 kcal every day.



Saleh Abdul Fadlallah, a camel broker from Cairo, Egypt. His daily intake is 3200 calories, and, honestly those calories look delicious.



Robina Weiser-Linnartz, a master baker from Cologne, Germany. Clocks out at about 3700 calories a day. If it was me, I’d eat all of those sweet buns. Just saying, the girl’s got some strong will.



Conrad Tolby, American long-distance truck driver. 5400 calories a day. It’s weird, because I never thought that smokes would factor into that number, but yes, he basically lives off of that sugar high every day.

Jill McTighe, a classroom assistant from London, UK. 12300 daily calories, but if you look closer, you can see she’s just trying to win that iPod Classic.



Saada Haidar (left), a housewife from Sanaa, Yemen. 2700 calories a day and something tells me it’s for her entire family.
The head monk of a Tibetan monastery (right) , 4900 calories a day. Almost 3 times the daily norm, and it’s just rice and water?



Takeshi Masato, a Sumo wrestler from Nagoya, Japan. 3500 calories a day. I mean, it looks like it’s even less than what the monk is having. I’m so confused right now.

Katherine Navas, a high school student from Caracas, Venezuela. 4000 calories a day. And most of that comes from those delicious cookies, I bet!



Mariel Booth (left), a model and student from New York. 2400 calories a day. See, she’s got the right idea – nothing too caloric, just water and thin air!
Sitarani Tyaagi (right), an ascetic Hindu priest from Ujjain, India. A whopping 1000 calories a day. Can we just send them some food? This is not right…



Zu Zhipeng, a freelance computer graphics artist. 1600 calories a day. Not quite the ascetic Hindu priest, but it’s pretty damn close to starvation.

Noolkisaruni Tarakuai, one of four wives of a Maasai chief. It’s fantastic how a person can function on 800 calories a day.



Lan Guihua, a widowed farmer from Ganjiagou Village, Sichuan Province, China. She’s a bit closer to the average norm at 1900 calories a day, which doesn’t seem all that much.



Oswaldo Gutierrez (left), an Oil Platform worker from Venezuela. 6000 calories a day will at least give you enough strength to get the job done. Oil drilling is not an easy job.
Bruce Hopkins (right), a lifeguard from Sydney, Australia. They say it’s 3700 calories right there, but I just don’t see it. 1 measly sandwich? Come on, Bruce Hopkins, you got lives to save!

Willie Ishulutak, an Inuit soapstone carver from Iqaluit, Canada. In a cold climate like that 4700 calories a day is nothing.



Oscar Higares, a professional bullfighter from Miraflores De La Sierra, Spain. This time the climate has nothing to do with it, but you’ll need every one of those 4200 calories to fight a raging bull.



Tiffany Whitehead, a student and part-time ride supervisor at the Mall of America amusement park. Daily intake – 1900 calories. And yes, the ice cubes also count.

John Opris, a wind farm operations manager for enXco. I don’t know if his 3700 calories are enough, but I’d sure trade my weekly pizza for a day out there.



Curtis Newcomer, a 20-year-old U.S. Army soldier, Fort Irwin, Mojave Desert. You know something isn’t right when people who are trained fighters get 4000 calories per day.



Miguel Ángel Martín Cerrada, a shepherd from Zarzuela de Jadraque, Spain. Consumes around 3800 calories, and probably shares some of them with his flock and sheep-herding mastiff.