People on TLC’s “My Strange Addiction” do some pretty weird things: being obsessed with intimate objects, eating deodorant, coffee enemas, but the woman who is addicted to drinking human blood had to be one of the most disturbing things I’ve ever watched on television. I gagged at just the thought of replacing my morning orange juice with a freshly drained pint of blood.

Michelle, 29, can’t go a day without drinking blood. If she does she suffers from headaches and gets irritable, similar to how most people feel if they go without their daily dose of coffee.

Since there isn’t enough human blood to satisfy Michelle’s addiction, she consumes 36 litres of pig plasma every week.

The California tattoo-artist has drank so much blood in the past 10 years she could fill 23 bathtubs. Human blood, however, is usually a once a week treat.

Michelle said: “I get cravings like someone craving for a cigarette. I drink blood while I am reading, relaxing or painting. It’s like having a cold and drinking a hot toddy.

She even cooks with it and has a preference as to what type of animal blood she likes the best:

“I mix it in soups and stir fry and when I make a Bloody Mary, I actually add real blood,” she said.

“I prefer pig’s blood to beef, there’s more gamey-ness to it. It’s saltier but has the same consistency as wine.”

But above all, she prefers human blood and can even tell the difference between the blood of a man and a woman.

“… I try and drink as much human blood as I can. Men and women’s blood tastes different as men’s is definitely thicker.

“I’d always take human blood over animal blood, but I don’t categorize myself as a vampire, I’m simply someone who just enjoys blood a lot.”

Bloodthirsty Michelle likes to suck human blood from her friend John, a donor whom she trusts.

She acquired an appetite for blood when she was a teenager. She lapped up the blood that trickled from her arm and has been hooked ever since. Though she no longer self-mutilates, she always has a freezer full of frozen pig blood ready to thaw.