Jason Sudeikis Was Born With a Rare Condition That Affects How He Eats

With a career spanning decades, Jason Sudeikis has built up a massive fan following for his comedic wit and clever writing chops. The SNL alum and Ted Lasso star is known for balancing humor with heartfelt character drama, and that’s what makes him a joy to see on screen.

While many fans might think they know everything about the man, there’s one aspect of Jason Sudeikis many frequently overlook despite him having talked about it a few times over the years — specifically, the rare condition that has changed how he eats and approaches the world. Let’s take a look at what that’s all about and how he got it.

Jason Sudeikis smiles on a red carpet in a black suit and bow tie.
Jason Sudeikis attends the 88th Annual Academy Awards. | Christopher Polk/Getty Images

Jason Sudeikis has a rare condition affecting his sense of smell

Sudeikis was born with a rare condition called anosmia. In short, this means he can’t really smell. While the condition can be caused by all sorts of things from head injuries to nasal infections, he was just born with it. That said, Sudeikis has commented that it took him a while to actually notice, especially since he isn’t completely “smell blind” as some might call it.

Smell is important for many areas of life, as Sudeikis says

Texas News Today recapped the 2013 interview with Jimmy Kimmel where Sudeikis first revealed his condition. As mentioned before, it took him some time until he finally realized his sense of smell was different from other people, noting how he (somewhat luckily) missed out on huffing everyone’s BO in the middle school locker room as a teen.

For as many positives one could imagine regarding not having to smell certain things, though, it really is a challenge at times. As Sudeikis himself explained, not being able to smell like other people has caused some problems, partly with how and what he can eat. Smell makes up a major part of what we consider taste, sometimes even more than the actual, literal sense of taste. While anosmia doesn’t require any special diets, it certainly makes eating a lot less pleasurable given that it takes out a crucial part of the equation.

Sudeikis has also said that he thinks his lack of smell has affected his memory. While it would be silly to say he’s got some major memory loss because of his condition, smell also plays a part in how we form memories. Without smells, he tends to remember things less vividly or completely as other people might.

The ‘Ted Lasso’ star is an interesting man

Sudeikis has had an interesting life and career. Seemingly destined to become an actor given his family history (he’s the nephew of George Wendt, who played Norm on Cheers), Sudeikis got his start acting in local improv comedy troupes like ComedySportz in Kansas City, iO Chicago, and The Second City. Despite making it big on SNL, Sudeikis was actually fairly antagonistic towards them before getting cast. Even then, he did originally start out as a writer and only began to act later on, that promotion blowing away any of the misgivings he might have still had about the show.

Despite his reputation for playing jerks, Sudeikis had always wanted to bring a little more positivity into his roles. It’s why the character of Ted Lasso stuck with him for so long, even after he was created for a short series of NBC Sports commercials back in 2013. With hopes of changing his image, it only made sense to bring back such a beacon of sunshine, especially given just how good basing a whole show around him turned out to be.

RELATED: ‘Ted Lasso’: Jason Sudeikis Snuck His Favorite ‘SNL’ Sketch Into Season 1