Don Lerman

Don Lerman
Born 1949 (age 6667)
Levittown, New York
Nationality American
Other names Moses
Occupation Competitive eater

Don Lerman (born 1949) is an American retired competitive eater who set multiple records for eating butter, beans, bologna, and burgers. He has several nicknames, including "The Fastest Hands in Competitive Eating", "Grandpa Don Lerman", and "90-Year-Old Don Lerman."[1]


Don Lerman was born in Levittown, New York, in 1949.[2] As a child, Lerman ate nearly everything available.[3] Before becoming a competitive eater, Lerman was a bread salesman.[1]

In 2000, Lerman saw that a local ice cream store was holding an eating contest and entered. He won the competition, and become "hooked" on eating contests. He scanned the internet for several eating contests, and attended several others regardless of the price.[2]

Lerman has set several records. He ate seven quarter-pound sticks of salted butter in five minutes, a feat that was included on Bleacher Report's "Top 10 Unbreakable and Disgusting Competitive Eating Records".[4] Lerman has also eaten 6 pounds (2.7 kg) of baked beans in one minute and 48 seconds, 2.76 pounds (1.25 kg) of pork and chicken bologna in six minutes, and 11 burgers in ten minutes.[5]

Lerman often attended eating events dressed as Moses,[6] which was his persona of choice.[3] Other costumes Lerman was known to dress up in included those of cowboys and gangsters.[7]

Lerman announced his retirement to spend more time with his dog.[1] He continued to compete infrequently,[2] however, he eventually permanently retired feeling he was unable to keep up with modern professional eaters.[8] He is Jewish.[2] Lerman is credited with inventing the "water method", where one drinks water to expand their stomach. Lerman stated that this allows for the stomach to hold more food.[2]


  1. 1 2 3 "Lerman To Retire". Competitive Eating News. Retrieved October 24, 2013.
  2. 1 2 3 4 5 Foer, Franklin; Tracy, Marc (October 30, 2012). Jewish Jocks: An Unorthodox Hall of Fame. Grand Central Publishing. p. 263. ISBN 978-1-4555-1611-7.
  3. 1 2 Marcus, Lilit. "The Chomping Champion". AJL Magazine. Retrieved October 26, 2013.
  4. Chavez, Christopher. "Top 10 Unbreakable and Disgusting Competitive Eating Records". Bleacher Report. Retrieved October 26, 2013.
  5. "Eater Profiles: Don Lerman". Major League Eating. Retrieved October 26, 2013.
  6. Yiddishe Mamas: The Truth About the Jewish Mother. Andrews McMeel Publishing. January 1, 2009. pp. 258–. ISBN 978-0-7407-8889-5.
  7. Ryan Nerz (April 4, 2006). Eat This Book: A Year of Gorging and Glory on the Competitive Eating Circuit. St. Martin's Press. pp. 151–. ISBN 978-1-4668-0232-2.
  8. "Speed Eaters Gain Weight, Clog Arteries But Have Few Regrets". WCTV. Retrieved October 26, 2013.
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