10 Strange Cases of “You Are What You Eat”

1The woman who made yogurt out of her vagina

When Cecilia Westbrook, a MD/Ph.D. student at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, joked with her friend about why wasn't any yogurt made out of vaginal secretions, curiosity piqued her brain. To her amazement, she discovered that there was absolutely no information on the subject on the internet or in medical literature.

Westbrook then took matters into her own hands (or her own vagina for that matter.) The student knew that every vagina is home to hundreds of different types of bacteria and organisms. These organisms produce lactic acid, hydrogen peroxide, and other substances that keep the it healthy. The dominant bacteria, called lactobacillus, is also what people sometimes use to culture milk, cheese, and yogurt.

Using a wooden spoon, Cecilia set up a positive control (made with actual yogurt as the starter culture) and a negative control (plain milk with nothing added), and combined her own homemade ingredient to the third batch of yogurt. Voila! After leaving it overnight, Westbrook had her very own va-jay-jay yogurt!

Westbrook described her first batch of yogurt tasting “sour, tangy, and almost tingly on the tongue.” She compared it to Indian yogurt, and ate it with some blueberries.

Who needs Mango Lassi with your spicy Indian food when you can have the “Westbrook special?”

2The music legend who bit off a bat's head and had it bite him in the ass years later

Rock ‘n' Roll Hall of Famer Ozzy Osbourne's wild antics became the stuff of legend one night on tour in Des Moines, Iowa in 1982. During his concert, someone threw what the former (at the time) Black Sabbath front man believed was a rubber bat onstage, and he proceeded to bite the head off of it. The only problem was that it was a real bat who bit the “Crazy Train” singer right back before being decapitated.

Cut to 2015, Ozzy is renovating his mansion in Buckinghamshire, England, but he has some guests who live in the barn on his property that he wants to get rid of – bats.

Osbourne is convinced that the winged mammals are having their revenge on him. One can't just move bats from a property without obtaining a license. After a long fight with local officials, Ozzy finally got the ok and paid $29,600 to have the bats removed and safely rehoused.

The singer also snorted ants in the drug-fueled days of the 1980s but so far, there hasn't been a report to pest control involving the tiny creatures.

3The beer that was brewed from a beard

Now, it's the men's turn. Sure, we can't make yogurt, but we can make beer!

The Rogue brewing company had been searching for an exclusive yeast to match with their homegrown barley and hops and sent three samples they found in their hop yard to culture. Of the more than 1600 strains of yeast, only a select few can ferment sugars into alcohol. Every sample they submitted failed to produce a yeast that would ferment.

Someone joked that Brewmaster John Maier's beard (that he's grown since 1978) might be a perfect medium to grow yeast. With nothing to lose (except a little facial hair), Maier plucked a few hairs from his beard and sent it to the lab for testing and culturing. Not only could Maier's beard produce yeast, it worked so well that it produced a crisp flavor not typically associated with the unruly varieties of yeast.

Beard Beer is one of the many award-winning ales the Rogue brewing company produces. I wonder what the story is behind their Big Ass Blackberry beer is?

4The boy who turns orange from carrots

Did you ever wonder why a carrot is orange? These vitamin A enriched vegetables contain carotenoids – a group of pigments that are generally found in plants and other photosynthetic organisms. A diet of carotenoid-enriched foods, like blue-green algae and shrimp, give a flamingo's feathers their pink color.

Owners of Koi, the gold, and red decorative fish, tamper with nature by feeding fish food with color-enhancing carotenoids to bring out the brilliant orange and red shades that made them famous.

Even a human's skin can turn orange by overeating carrots, which, of course, contain carotenoids, but most people would have to eat a heck of a lot of carrots for that to occur. Most people except Leo Barnett, a toddler believed to be the only boy in Britain who suffers from a condition called hyper-beta carotenemia. This means he can't digest carotenoids – his skin orange immediately if the lad has any food with carotenoids in them.

His mother first discovered the boy's condition when he was diagnosed with pneumonia and had skin of orange. After a month of being discolored, the kid's mother took Leo to the doctor where it was discovered he had missing liver enzyme, causing the carotenemia condition.

The orange eventually faded on the kid, also known as “The Tango Kid” and “Oompa Loompa” by his parents.

5The parasite that replaces the tongue of its host

Okay, I hope this next entry doesn't give you nightmares but read on by all means – if you have the guts.

Meet the Cymothoa exigua, a bizarre louse that attacks fish, burrows into it, devours the fish's tongue and proceeds to live inside of the fish. That's right, not only does the parasite eat at the fish's tongue, it BECOMES the fish's tongue!

Although the isopod isn't a threat to humans, they can be quite nasty when being picked up.

Recently, Zoe Butler's photo of a mystery creature she found in a can of Princes tuna went viral and became a media sensation. After an investigation by the tuna company, it was discovered that the tiny creature was, in fact, a crab, but a manager at the Natural History Museum in London believes otherwise and thinks it is indeed the dreaded Cymothoa exigua.

6The man addicted to drinking the urine of young boys

You think you've seen it all on My Strange Addiction? Well, you haven't checked out Investigation Discovery's My Strange Criminal Addiction, with an episode featuring Robert Wells, a man addicted to drinking young boys' urine because he believes it keeps him young. The man disturbingly posed as a maintenance employee in a theme park restroom in order to get the "freshest" urine he could find. He told young boys that the toilets were broken and forced them to pee into a funnel, where he'd collect the urine and drink it.

Wells' addiction led him to be slapped with a child sex-offender charge, and he's now facing five years in prison.

I'm pretty sure Ponce de León didn't have this in mind when he was searching for the Fountain of Youth.

7The man who wrote a sperm cookbook


Cookbooks are an industry of their own. Over the past 25 years, more than 50,000 cookbooks have been published alone. Almost every type of cookbook imaginable has been published over the years. From Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking to Ted Nugent's Kill It & Grill It, there has been no shortage of cookbooks to hit the shelves.

Even with all of these types of cookbooks, Paul “Fotie” Photenhauer figured there was a missing niche in the cookbook market so he wrote Natural Harvest: A Collection of Semen Based Recipes. As Photenhauer explains, “Semen is not only nutritious, but it also has a wonderful texture and amazing cooking properties. Like fine wine and cheeses, the taste of semen is complex and dynamic. Semen is inexpensive to produce and is commonly available in many, if not most, homes and restaurants.”

With “Man Made Oysters” or “Creamy Cum Crepes,” these recipes certainly go beyond the classic, man-made protein shake! “Fotie” didn't stop there either. He put out Semonology- the Semen Bartender's Handbook, a book that puts the “cock” in cocktail recipes. “Macho Mojitos” anyone?

8The woman who had 10 lbs of hair removed from her stomach

In 2007, an 18-year-old woman entered the Rush University Medical Center in Chicago complaining of a five-month history of swelling in her abdomen, vomiting and an inexplicable loss of 40 pounds.

A scan of the woman's abdomen revealed a large mass nearly obstructing her entire stomach. The mass was ten pounds of human hair. Upon questioning, it was revealed that she had had a habit of eating her own hair for many years, a condition called trichophagia.

A year after surgeons removed the 15 x 7 x 7 clump of hair from the woman's abdomen, her pain and vomiting disappeared. She also gained 20 pounds and stopped eating her hair. A happy ending to what could have been a very hairy situation.

9The artist that ate his own hip

Norwegian artist Alexander Selvik Wengshoel, was born with a deformed hip and lived his life in a wheelchair until he got hip replacement surgery when he was 21. After the operation, the conceptual artist convinced doctors to let him film his hip replacement operation and keep the bone.

Wengshoel wanted to use his hip in his art somehow, but decided to eat it instead. Yes, I said HE DECIDED TO EAT HIS HIP! As the Norwegian artist told The Local, "I had to boil off the meat to get to the bone, and when I started scraping off the meat, I took off a little piece and I thought, why not do it?”

"It's not every day I will have a piece of human flesh which is mine and which it is possible to eat, so I had a little taste, and then I thought, 'that's really nice.'”

Wengshoel compared the taste of his hip to “wild sheep.” Yum!

10The mother who started her own placenta pill business

Although eating your own placenta, also known as placentophagy, isn't a new idea, it seems like it's gaining popularity among mothers everywhere. Fans of the practice say that eating the placenta can protect against postpartum depression (PPD). The placenta is a baby's in-utero power pack of vitamins that includes vitamin B6 and B12, as well as estrogen and progesterone.

After New Zealander Kirsty Ren gave birth to her youngest child, she decided to make pills of her own placenta. She says they increased milk production, boosted energy and helped prevent post-natal depression.

Although Ren's supply is limited, she said feedback from her 10 customers had been positive.

Some could not afford the $300 cost, so she only charged for postage and allowed them to pay the rest when they could. "It's more important to me that the mother gets the benefit. I know I'm not going to get rich. That's not why you do it."