Although competitive eating has been around since the early 1900s when contestants traveled to their local county fairs to eat pies without their hands, organized eating officially became a sport in 1997. An organization called the International Federation of Competitive Eating (IFOCE) regulates eating rules and safety standards, unifies international eating competitions, tracks world records, and ranks the world's top eaters.

Here, an account of the most incredible feats in speed eating history.

  1. Hot Dogs. Every July 4, millions tune in to what's billed as the "Super Bowl of Competitive Eating," the Nathan's Famous Hot Dog Contest. At this event, contestants of all shapes and sizes compete for the speed-eating crown. In 2007, Joey Chestnut consumed 66 hot dogs in 12 minutes to defeat six-time champion Takeru "the Tsunami" Kobayashi. One cannot help but wonder if Chestnut exercised for the 93.5 hours it would take to burn off that incredible portion.
  2. Pickled Jalapenos. Peter Piper may have picked a peck of pickled peppers, but it was 63-year-old Richard "the Locust" LeFevre who ate 247 pickled jalapeno peppers in eight minutes at the 2006 Texas State Fair. Some reports say he didn't even break a sweat.
  3. Baked Beans. Forty-year-old, 105-pound Sonya Thomas took down 8.4 pounds of baked beans in two minutes, 47 seconds on August 27, 2004. Sonya, a former IFOCE Rookie of the Year, was almost unbeaten in 2004.
  4. Corned Beef and Cabbage. In celebration of St. Patrick's Day, 21-year-old Patrick Bertoletti was able to stomach 10.63 pounds of corned beef and cabbage. The only meager part of this accomplishment was the amount of time he did it in: 10 minutes.
  5. Cow Brains. Although Takeru Kobayashi was finally beaten in the hot dog eating contest, he remains one of the most recognizable faces in competitive eating. He currently holds four records, one of which consisted of him eating 17.7 pounds of cow brains in 15 minutes.
  6. Doughnuts. Eric "Badlands" Booker is physically one of the larger speed-eating celebs, weighing in at 420 pounds. In October 2002, Booker consumed 49 glazed doughnuts in only eight minutes. The amount of calories in that serving is eye-popping 9,800.
  7. Ice Cream. Ed "Cookie" Jarvis does not hold the record that his nickname implies. However, Jarvis holds the most eating titles in the IFOCE, including his first title-World Ice Cream Eating Champion. It took little effort for him to devour one gallon, nine ounces of vanilla ice cream in 12 minutes. Imagine that ice cream headache.
  8. Maine Lobster. Sonya Thomas makes the list again; this time for seafood. On August 13, 2005, Thomas ate 44 Maine lobsters from the shell (which equals 11.3 pounds of meat) in just under 12 minutes. Reportedly single, Thomas would probably be an expensive date.
  9. Mayonnaise. Imagine ingesting 714.1 grams of fat in eight minutes. As tough as it is to comprehend, Oleg Zhornitskiy did it when he consumed four 32-ounce bowls of mayonnaise. Although it is his only record, it's a bulky one.
  10. Ultimate Eating Tournament (Various Foods). On April 19, 2008, at the Broadway at the Beach in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, 42-year-old Juliet Lee dominated the competition. In seven minutes and 13 seconds, Lee was able to put away seven chicken wings, one pound of nachos, three hot dogs, two personal pizzas, and three Italian ices. How does she manage to keep her 105-pound figure?