We don’t take the liberty of stating how true the expression “you are what you eat” is. At any rate, we will definitely refrain from characterising Zuckerberg, Dorsey and their peers based on the food preferences of entrepreneurs.
Rumours that Facebook’s CEO is an android in a human body have been around for a long time, and it seems the hearing before the US Congress has only strengthened the belief in the theory. Jokes stuff, but some of Mark Zuckerberg’s habits, including his eating habits, do raise quite a few questions.
Zuckerberg has been known not to drink coffee, and he’s also generally not very selective about food: he simply doesn’t have time to dwell on such nonsense. In 2011, however, he took the world by surprise when he announced that he would only eat meat or fish that he could catch himself. This was not even a question of hunting, everything is much more savage. The billionaire decided to start practicing on lobsters by throwing live animals into a pot of boiling water, then to proceed to the slaughter of chickens and then to something more profound: pigs, goats and cattle. The point of this ambiguous challenge is to become a more responsible and grateful consumer.
It didn’t end with loud statements: Zuckerberg once invited Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey to dinner and offered him a dish of goat he had killed with a laser gun, but, as Dorsey recalled, the food was cold and he decided to limit himself to a salad.
To be honest, what we would most like to see is Zuckerberg going off to kill animals with a laser, knife or any other weapon, but at the same time we can’t help but admit that there is a grain of reason in this crazy approach. Nutritionists have repeatedly advised to eat “complex” food, which is composed of many ingredients, only if you prepare it yourself. If you want to eat a piece of cake or fried potatoes with bacon and cheese sauce, cook it yourself instead of ordering food in a restaurant or buying semi-finished products. The urge to indulge in a cheat meal will go away, and if you do get up to the cooker, you’ll definitely make a healthier version.
It’s no secret that Steve Jobs had very specific taste habits, formed while still a student and which played no small part in his battle with cancer. It is known that Jobs used to follow an apple and carrot diet and could eat only these products for weeks. Nutritionists have repeatedly pointed out that this approach is clearly not healthy. Apples, carrots and other fruits and vegetables should complement the diet, but they are not the only components: they have no healthy fats and almost no protein. Jobs’ only weakness was sushi, which he ate on occasional trips to Japan.
Jobs was a fruitarian for a long time, meaning he only ate plant food – vegetables, fruit and nuts. What makes this different from veganism is that you only cut off the parts of the plant that would not do him any harm if you lose them. Before shooting the biopic about Jobs starring Ashton Kutcher had been getting used to the image of Apple creator so thoroughly that he decided to follow this fruit-based diet and ended up in the hospital with pancreatitis right before the filming.
Among other things, Jobs practiced fasting and sometimes sat on water and salad leaves for a week in order to maintain his strength, noting at the same time that the abstinence from food makes him feel euphoric. Experts say that this is because the lack of glucose causes the body to produce ketones, which are organic substances produced by breaking down fat reserves, as an alternative source of energy.
Jobs also believed that eating plant food saved him from sweating and therefore preferred not to use deodorant. Jobs’ former colleagues, commenting on Walter Isaacson’s biography of Apple, noted that Jobs was very much mistaken about this.
The CEO of Twitter also has a very interesting relationship with food, and it’s not just the goat killed by Zuckerberg that appears on his plate. What’s more, one of Silicon Valley’s geniuses has a lot more in common with the literary Sherlock Holmes than with his colleague from the world of technology: They are both advocates of fasting, believing it is good for the brain.
Thus, in one of his podcasts, Dorsey said that lately he prefers to limit himself to one meal a day – just dinner, and also often goes on hunger strike at weekends. Luckily, at least once a day he allows himself a healthy but varied meal. His diet includes fish, steaks, chicken meat, vegetables in large quantities, and he prefers berries or bitter chocolate for dessert. Dorsey also likes to meditate, take showers and go to the sauna every day.
Arguably, the founder of SpaceX and Tesla is a rare Silicon Valley resident without food cravings. Business Insider told us that, long before becoming a legend in his lifetime, Musk decided to challenge himself to live on $1 a day (all to save money). He ended up eating hot dogs and orange juice for a month. One of the editors of the publication was so interested in this experience that they decided to repeat the experiment, slightly increasing the budget – up to $2 per day. It turned out to be not that difficult. However, pasta, bananas, butter and other inexpensive products which assured satiation, but had a very indirect relation to healthy eating, formed the main diet of the tester.
Today, Ilon Musk is also not exactly trying to stick to a healthy lifestyle and has repeatedly stressed in interviews that he would like to give up sugar. He usually skips breakfast and snacks on a Mars bar before lunch (well, what else). Through one addiction he managed to overcome: an earlier businessman used to drink 8 cans of diet soda a day, but he managed to give up his bad habit.
Another fan of unsophisticated and unhealthy food is Windows founder Bill Gates. His business partners and subordinates have repeatedly said that one of the richest men on the planet adores McDonald’s and drinks a lot of Diet Coke. “It doesn’t matter who you are, if you have a lunch appointment with Bill Gates, he will probably send someone to get burgers at McDonald’s,” Joe Serrell, managing director of Gates’ personal foundation the Gates Foundation, told the Telegraph.
True, in the same interview he suggested that this craving for fast food stemmed from Gates’ caring wife Melinda, who wouldn’t let him eat burgers at home. Well, in the early days when Gates was building his empire, his food was even less wholesome and his main diet consisted mainly of instant Tang powdered juice. The head of Windows didn’t want to be distracted from his work, and the drink gave him the energy boost he needed.
Sticks to a proper diet, but does not go to extremes. In fact, the Amazon CEO shows it: he is always fit, energetic, upbeat and cheerful. Nevertheless, Bezos tries to maintain the image of an eccentric businessman, and it is known that he once ordered a “metaphorical” octopus during a business breakfast. “You are the octopus I order. When I look at the menu, it’s something I don’t understand, something I’ve never had. I have to have octopus for breakfast,” Bezos told his business associates, adding that such an unexpected choice reflects his love and even hunger for all things new and unfamiliar.