/
Close
Newsletters  | Mobile

World's Most Dangerous Foods

"San Nak Ji" (Live Octopus), Choking, Korea

Andre Seale/Alamy

Sannakji (Wriggling Octopus), Korea

Threat: Choking

This mild-tasting, lightly seasoned dish likely won’t hurt you once it’s in your stomach—but getting it there can be dicey. Nakji is a kind of small octopus served in Korean restaurants and spots such as Seoul’s Noryangjin Fish Market. The octopus’s legs are removed while the critter is still alive, so that its little limbs are still wriggling on your plate like a pile of worms. The kicker: the tentacles’ suction cups can stick like crazy to your cheeks or inside your throat, so choking is a very real threat. In South Korea, about six people per year reportedly die from eating it.

Prognosis: Chew it well, and drink lots of liquids while eating it, to keep those little suckers moving to your stomach. Also, while it’s hard to imagine eating this stuff sober, experts say that dining on nakji while tipsy only makes matters worse.

Advertisement

Sign Up


Connect With Travel + Leisure
  • Travel+Leisure
  • Tablet
  • Available devices

Already a subscriber?
Get FREE ACCESS to the digital edition


Advertisement


Advertisement

Advertisement

Marketplace