01/30/2014 11:21 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

8 Weird Food Customs From Around The World

When it comes to eating, everyone's got their own style -- Americans generally put things on sticks and deep-fry them, while other cultures use forks and knives. But when it comes to manners, what passes for polite in Poland might be taboo in Djibouti. Here's a list of some of the weirdest food-related customs and etiquette from around this crazy world, just in case you want to avoid dirty looks for refusing to pass gas in Canada.


CREDIT: Flickr/dion gillard

In Thailand, it's considered crude to put food in your mouth using a fork. Instead, the fork is used to push food onto the spoon, which is then put into your mouth. King Chulalongkorn introduced the utensils to Thailand after his visit to Europe in 1897, but apparently hadn't stayed long enough for the fork demo.


CREDIT: Wikipedia

Loudly slurping noodles and soup is acceptable in Japan, and is thought to both improve the flavor of the dish and allow the eater to enjoy hotter foods more quickly. Basically, in Japan, your cousin Jeff would be considered the politest person ever.


CREDIT: Wikipedia/Zlerman

It's taboo to eat with your left hand in parts of the Middle East and India, due to the division of labor between hands -- the right hand is reserved for picking up food and other awesome, noble pursuits. The left is reserved for cleaning... uh... yourself. Southpaw just got a whole new meaning.


CREDIT: Flickr/Alberto Varela

In South Korea, nobody at the table eats until the oldest or most senior person takes a bite. If there are twins at the table who were born mere minutes apart, the older one sets the pace. My older twin brother Ross would love to live in South Korea, because he also loves Psy.

There's even more faux pas involving cheese in Italy, chopsticks in China, and how cleaning your plate might be rude, and they're all in the full story on!