Beyoncé v Elizabeth Taylor. Whose diet will you choose?
Make like the singer with her vegan-diet delivery service or take comfort in ‘lardy’ Liz
Beyoncé and husband Jay Z at a basketball game in January: both did the 22 Days Nutrition challenge in 2013. Photograph: EPA/Paul Buck
Elizabeth Taylor with Richard Burton at Dublin Airport in 1965: her diet book was called ‘Elizabeth Takes Off.’ Photograph: Jimmy McCormack/The Irish Times
In the beginning there was everyone’s favourite consciously uncoupled ex, Gwyneth Paltrow, with her annual detox and her steam-cleaned vagina.
Now, brand Beyoncé is getting in on the lifestyle act. Ms Knowles has just launched a new vegan meal delivery service.
Cooked up with her trainer Marco Borges, the plan is based on the belief that it takes 21 days to break a bad habit. A bit like going “On the dry” in January, but with more veg.
All meals will be 100 per cent plant-based and delivered once a week. All ingredients will be non-GMO, gluten-free, soya-free, dairy-free and organic. Prices will range from $9.76 to $16.50 (€8.50-€14.36) a pop. It will not be available in Ireland. Or from Lidl.
On day one, you will be blessed with the following:
Breakfast: Smoothie with 1 cup almond milk, 1 large frozen banana, 1-2 tablespoons almond butter, 1 serving of 22 Days protein powder, and a heaping cup of leafy greens (spinach, chard, kale and so on).
Lunch: 1 brown rice tortilla or two gluten-free corn tortillas with quarter cup hemp hummus, fresh or roasted red pepper, sliced cucumbers, and a handful of greens. Serve with steamed vegetables as desired, or a small side salad
Afternoon snack: 22 Days bar
Dinner: Courgette pasta with cherry tomatoes, sweet potato, basil, and hemp “parmesan”
Dessert: Banana soft serve
By day 22, you will have earned the following:
Breakfast: 1 sliced banana and fresh berries with 1 cup organic puffed rice or millet cereal and 1 cup almond milk
Lunch: Smoky avocado and jicama salad (no, us neither), 1 small apple if desired
Afternoon snack: two peanut butter and jelly snack balls
Dinner: Quinoa enchiladas
Dessert: Dark chocolate
After all that roughage, like your lifestyle guru of choice, you too will probably be full of s***.
Apparently Beyoncé did the 22 Days Nutrition challenge with her husband Jay Z in 2013, when they both dabbled in going meat-free.
“I am so grateful that I took the challenge,” she said. “All you have to do is try. If I can do it, anyone can,” said the radiant, well proportioned singer.
Unfortunately, anyone cannot “do it”. You’ll need to shell out around $700 for the privilege. Get rich or die tryin’, indeed.
And scientists are not at all amused by celebrity dietary meddling, either.
Timothy Caulfield, a researcher at the University of Alberta and author of Is Gwyneth Paltrow Wrong About Everything? When Celebrity Culture and Science Clash, has no truck with detoxifying diets.
“The human body has organs, including the kidneys, liver, skin and colon, that take care of the detoxification process. When you pee, you are detoxifying,” he said.
As the world wrestles with not having enough and having far too much, we may just have found you the perfect celebrity role model. She is dead. But don’t let that put you off.
In 1987, Elizabeth Taylor wrote a diet book called Elizabeth Takes Off.
She was on marriage number five and was quite a large lady by that stage. Yet without the aid of any quinoa to speak of, Liz piled off the pounds, only stopping when she realised she was losing her bust. “Put on some flesh in a hurry!” was her speedy conclusion. No one would blame her.
Elizabeth Takes Off became a best seller. One recipe combines tuna, grapefruit, tomato paste and mayonnaise. In another, peanut butter is used – with a steak. Eat your heart out Beyoncé (unless you are still on that vegan diet, of course).
The book is out of print but it shouldn’t be. One chapter is titled: “Aerobic Exercise: Are They For You?”
In her heyday, Ms Taylor’s daily diet consisted of peanut butter-and-bacon baguettes for lunch with fried chicken and Jack Daniel’s for dinner.
“If you think this picture of me as Miss Lard will inspire you,” Ms Taylor wrote in her book, “go ahead and put it on your refrigerator, I have no objection.”
Twenty-two days with Beyoncé or a lifetime with Liz? You decide.