16 Weird Things You Never Knew About About Kim Kardashians's BFF, Jonathan Cheban AKA Foodgod

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Who Is Jonathan Cheban? 15 Weird Facts You Never Knew About Kim Kardashians's BFF
Entertainment And News

Who is Jonathan Cheban, besides that guy showing up in the background of Kim Kardashian's photos? Who was that guy who ate an enormous pizza topped with tiny burgers? Why does he look so much like Scott Disick?

Jonathan Cheban is Kim Kardashian's BFF and the one who was there for her when she got robbed in Paris. He's a veteran of several reality shows, has a truly interesting Instagram handle that he's turned into a side hustle. Basically, he's an all-around character and a half. 


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Who is Jonathan Cheban?

He started in PR.

Cheban was born in February 1974 in the Soviet Union. His dad is a diamond dealer and his mom a real estate agent.

He grew up in New Jersey and graduated from Hofstra University in 1995 with a degree in communications. He worked in the research department at The Late Show with David Letterman.

Later, he worked at a PR firm. His big break came when he worked Sean Combs' 29th birthday party, an event his boss refused to take on. In 2001, he founded his own company. CommandPR has thrown parties for a number of rich and famous celebrities, including JLo and Janet Jackson. 

He's been on a lot of reality shows.

Cheban has been on more than 20 episodes of Keeping Up With The Kardashians over the years, but that's not the only reality show on his resume. He has also appeared on KUWTK spinoffs: Kourtney and Kim Take New York, Kourtney and Kim Take Miami, and Kourtney and Khloe Take The Hamptons. 

In 2010, he had his own reality show called The Spin Crowd. That show was actually produced by Kim Kardashian, but was canceled after one season. He was also briefly on Celebrity Big Brother, the British show Celebs Go Dating, and an episode of Millionaire Matchmaker.

He got cut from Celebrity Big Brother.

Cheban was supposed to be a part of the cast of Celebrity Big Brother in 2017, but that didn't end up happening. Cheban allegedly demanded more than $130,000 a day to appear on the show.

He allegedly upped the money he wanted when he heard that Ray J was getting more than $1 million to be on the show. He intended to go on the show to defend Kim in the infamous sex tape scandal, but the fee he wanted and other demands were too much for the producers, and he was axed.

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He hustles!

How does Cheban support his expensive lifestyle? He has his hands in a ton of different things.

He launched a clothing line, he's a self-proclaimed foodie who judges competitions, he started a gossip site called The Dishh, and he had a food blog called The Foodgod Food Blog. 

Kourtney may not be his favorite Kardashian.

In a 2013 episode of Keeping Up with the Kardashians, Cheban and Kourtney had an argument that started out being about her work ethic. Kourtney tried to end it by saying, "You're shoved so far up Kim's a**. You're such a f***ing loser."

Cheban replied, "At least my job is not collecting Kim's money as it falls out of her a**. Without Kim, you'd be nothing!" But that wasn't it. The comment that sent Kourtney over the edge was when Cheban said, "Scott's never going to marry you!" Kourtney lunged at Cheban and slapped him.

Of course, reality TV being what it is, they had made up by the end of the episode.

He wanted to start a school for rich kids.

At one point, Cheban wanted to create a school for the children of the one percent called the International School of New York. The school was to be located at Trump Tower.

Cheban planned to teach the rich kids how to choose the best caviar, select the right leather for the seats in their private jets, and identify the best diamonds. He reportedly planned to offer these life lessons in conjunction with economic classes at a college level. 

He's really into cheese tea.

Yes, you read that correctly: cheese tea.

He was obsessed with the unique drink for a time, saying, "My thing is that I'm addicted to cheese tea. I drive to Queens and Brooklyn when I’m in New York, and I go to these crazy neighborhoods and find little places that sell cheese tea. I’m addicted to it. That’s the hype right now.”

​How did Cheban meet Kim?

Cheban was seated next to Kim at a birthday party purely by chance. "We got on instantly," he said. And the rest, as they say, is history.

Food makes him high.

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Well, when you call yourself the Foodgōd, what else do you expect?

In a 2017 interview, Cheban said, "I have a very sensitive palate, so I taste food more than other people do. When I eat these strawberries, they taste ten times better to me than it will to you. Sometimes food tastes so good that I fall off the chair, like in an amazing place like Rome, I'll have a ravioli and a shock goes through my system. It’s the real deal."

Why did he change his name to Foodgod?

Cheban's blog was called The Foodgōd. His Instagram bio simply says "Foodgōd." He legally changed his name to Foodgōd, too! 

How did he come to call himself this? It turns out it was Kanye's idea. Apparently, West started calling Cheban Foodgōd during a trip to Iceland.

Cheban said, "That's when I was like: Okay, if Kanye does it without me asking him to, it must be alright. So that’s when I really took on the Foodgōd. Anything Kanye approves is hot."

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He doesn't care what people think about his name change.

When asked if calling himself Foodgōd was egotistical, Cheban made it clear he didn't care. 

"I don’t answer to those people. I don’t give a f***. I don’t care. I don’t even see them. In fact, you could call this story 'A day in the life of not seeing haters,' because haters mean nothing to me. I’m still going on a yacht while they’re at home hating me instead of going to work and doing something.

I worked my butt off. People think I’m just a rich kid with money, but no. I work hard, and I can call myself whatever I want," he said.

He doesn't exercise.

Cheban doesn't sweat. Instead, he goes to a dermatologist in New York City who hooks him up to a machine that works out his abs.

Cheban swears that after the treatment, he feels like he's been doing crunches for hours: "There's a network of top doctors that normal people don’t know about. They do special things like this. If people knew about this, they’d be here in a minute. That’s just the perks of being famous because you get first access to special places like this."

Kardashian isn't his only famous friend.

The Kardashians are not his only famous friends. Cheban has been hanging out with Paris and Nicky Hilton for years. He's also friends with Kelly and Jack Osbourne. 

He doesn't cook.

Despite being the self-ordained Foodgōd, Cheban does not cook. He simply cannot be bothered. 

“Chefs cook; I eat out. In this day and age, people want to know where to go, what to eat, what to do, more than how to make stuff. Who cares about recipes anymore? It’s a different era,” he revealed.

What about that pizza?

In 2017, Cheban ate an enormous pizza topped with tiny burgers. It was called the Cheeseburger Pizza. We bet none of his Kardashian friends had even one bite.

Jonathan Cheban no longer exists.

Sounds dramatic, right? Cheban legally changed his name to Foodgod and now he's refusing to go by any other name — not even Jonathan.

In an interviewFoodgod said, “I already feel like I’m Foodgod. I’m just so tired of people questioning me and really tired of people not calling me Foodgod. It’s my name. Jonathan is not my name. They actually have to call me by my name, otherwise it’s like they’re talking about someone else.

It’s weird. [Jonathan’s] just not me, I’ve been Foodgod for so many years. It just doesn’t even register. When people call me Jonathan it’s actually awkward for me at this point.”

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Amy Lamare is a Los Angeles based writer and editor covering entertainment, pop culture, beauty, fashion, fitness, technology, and the intersection of technology, business, and philanthropy. You can find her on Instagram and Facebook.

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Editor's Note: This article was originally posted on October 2018 and was updated with the latest information.