Listen to Podcast | Cantonese: How Do You Say “Have You Eaten?”

New Words   
Have you eaten your fill yet? – 食饱未 (吃饱没?) – sek bao mei
Have you eaten? – 食咗未 (吃了没?) – sek zor mei

Podcast Transcript | Cantonese: How Do You Say “Have you Eaten?”

Hello everyone, welcome to our Cantonese – How Do You Say Podcast on My name is Eugene and in less than 5 minutes, you will learn how to greet people in Cantonese in a couple of different ways!  

So let’s start!  

Listen to these phrases:  



Do they sound similar to you? 

“食饱未?” means “Have you eaten your fill yet?”  

“食咗未?” means “Have you eaten yet?”  

Now, you may be wondering why greetings among Cantonese or Chinese people revolve around food. One story is that in the olden days, there is a lack of food and people did not always have enough to eat. As such, asking about whether somebody has had a meal yet is a good way to show that you care about their wellbeing.  

Now, there’s a growing taboo. In current days, the 2nd phrase, namely “食咗未” is preferred over the first phrase “食饱未”. This is because the first phrase “食饱未”, seems to imply that the subject of your greeting is not affluent enough to eat his or her fill. 

Alright, let’s do a recap now.  The 2 phrases are:  



Hope all our listeners learnt something today. In our next post, you will learn 2 more common greeting phrases to greet your family, friends and co-workers! Thank you for listening into our Cantonese – How Do You Say Podcast on My name is Eugene, see you! 

Our Philosophy for Learning Cantonese in Singapore, we want to make learning Cantonese fun, easy and practical for daily conversations in Singapore. As such, rather than figuring out which of the 10 or more Cantonese romanization system to use (e.g. Jyutping, Yale or Cantonese Pinyin etc.), we encourage you to form your own phonics, so that you make an association with these Cantonese words in the quickest way possible. To illustrate, the romanization of the English word, “eat”, is “Sik” using Jyutping and “Sihk” using Yale. However, in our “Have You Eaten” podcast transcript, you’ll find that we use “sek“, which we think relates to us better. That said, you may use other romanization (e.g “sake”, “xig“, etc), as long as it helps you to make sense of what you hear.