Health & Fitness

Inside new celeb diet hailed by Chris Martin & Liz Hurley – and why it’s not a good idea to follow it

EATING just one meal a day may sound like hell – but for Coldplay singer Chris Martin it led to weight-loss Paradise.

The star embarked on the bizarre diet after seeing Bruce Springteen’s physique on the same regime.

Chris Martin ate just one meal a day after seeing Bruce Springteen’s physique on the same regime
Not known, clear with picture desk

Liz Hurley fasts to keep her bikini figure looking its best[/caption]

Bruce Springsteen revealed his secret of staying in shape was dining on a solitary meal

Chris, 46, was already on a strict eating programme when Bruce, 73, revealed his secret of dining on a solitary meal.

Chris said: “He was in better shape than me. I was like, ‘Well, that’s my next ­challenge’.”

His ex-wife Gwyneth Paltrow last week confessed to some unusual eating habits, such as sticking to ­liquids such as broth for lunch and an early dinner consisting mainly of veg.

Chris, who previously admitted fasting one day a week, is the latest in a long line of celebs to try the one-full-meal-a-day fad.

They include Liz Hurley, who used it to shed weight post-pregnancy, actress Brooke Shields, Avengers star Chris Hemsworth, and actors Hugh Jackman and Magic Mike’s Channing Tatum, who survived mainly on one hamburger daily.

But does restrictive eating work?

Here, we look at the evidence, helped by nutritionists Rhiannon Lambert and Kim Pearson.

The science

IT has been suggested that eating less and giving food more time to digest lowers inflammation — reducing the risk of depression, heart problems, cancer and autoimmune diseases.

Researchers in Canada reckon it can lead to the safe loss of up to 13 per cent of weight, and a US study in 2015 concluded the plan left people less likely to develop coronary artery disease and diabetes.


Researchers reckon eating less can lead to the safe loss of up to 13 per cent of weight[/caption]

But other studies found it hampers fighting infection, increases the risk of heart disease and shortens dieters’ lifespans, because eating all your food in one go can damage cells.

Energy levels

NUTRITIONIST Rhiannon says one meal a day could play havoc with blood-sugar levels, leaving dieters feeling dizzy, tired and craving carbs.

She said: “Psychologically speaking it can spiral into a binge- restrict-eat cycle which is very disordered.


Rhiannon Lambert says one meal a day could play havoc with blood-sugar levels[/caption]

“If you don’t eat for a long period of time, you are drawn to food like pastries and sugar because your brain starts asking, ‘Where is the energy coming from?’

“Energy levels can dip and you can become severely ­malnourished. Your iron stores can deplete and you could ­suffer bone damage.

“Fasting isn’t a miracle. It’s just calories in and calories out.

“You’re just not eating as much so your body will use its fat stores to provide energy.”

Is it realistic?

FASTING is all the rage among celebrities, including Liz Hurley, but Rhiannon says us mere mortals will struggle with extreme diets.

She said: “Eating one meal a day is not sustainable. I question whether these stars will follow this for the rest of their lives.


Rhiannon says: ‘Eating one meal a day is not sustainable’[/caption]

“It’s not healthy because, for most of us, without the guidance and information celebrities have, it’s impossible to get all the nutrition you need in one meal.

“These people will probably have doctors monitoring their blood levels and may have access to physiotherapy, massage therapy and even swimming pools to relax.”


Everyone knows eating a big meal can make you feel sleepy and ­Rhiannon says fasting can have the opposite effect and play havoc with your sleep.

The expert, who has written a best-selling book, The Science of Nutrition, says: “People who are fasting might not sleep as well.


Rhiannon said: ‘People who are fasting might not sleep as well’[/caption]

“In eating disorders, such as anorexia, the body releases endorphins and people on juice diets, for instance, often talk about a euphoric high.

“It’s the body’s protective way of making sure you can carry on.

“This means you are actually less likely to be able to shut down if you’re not eating enough calories.

“Healthy carbohydrates can boost melatonin which plays a role in how well you sleep.”

Secrets of fasting

RHIANNON says time-restricting rather than one meal a day is a better option for those who insist on fasting.

She suggests the 16:8 intermittent fast which involves eating during an eight-hour window in the day and then avoiding food for the remaining 16 hours.

Rhiannon says: “Perhaps something like the 16:8 fast is better in which people eat the same amount of food they would usually consume but in a smaller time window.

“Not snacking late into the evening gives people time to digest and absorb their food better which can help with issues like IBS and bloating.

“For others, small but often during the day is a better option. We’re all unique.”

Not so fast – stick to nutrition guidelines

Fasting doesn’t suit everyone, but one meal a day is possible with the right food, according to leading WEIGHT loss nutritionist Kim.

She said: “Celebs need to work hard to make sure they get all the right nourishment.” Fasting helps the body to adapt to using fat stores.

She said: “Most people’s diets are very dominated by carbs so the body isn’t so effective at tapping into our fat reserves for energy.

“It becomes lazy and relies on a constant source of carbs so you need to train it to become more efficient at that switch. Once that fat-adapted state comes, it’s much easier for someone to go for longer periods of time without food.

“I’d advise fasters to use an app like Myfitnesspal to make sure they are getting enough good nutrition.

“Meals should be structured around protein such as eggs, fish, seafood or shakes with protein powder, healthy fats and lots of vegetables.”

Tempted? Here's what's on the menu . . .

IF you’re still keen on eating one meal a day, here is Kim’s example of the ­typical range of food you should eat:

STARTER: Salad with two boiled eggs, half an avocado, rocket, grated carrot, cherry tomatoes, dressed with a tablespoon of olive oil and a tablespoon of pumpkin seeds.

MAIN COURSE: Steak with roasted mediterranean vegetables (e.g. peppers, courgette, aubergine, red onion) and baked sweet potato.

DESSERT: Berry smoothie – half a banana, the second half of your avocado, a floret of frozen cauliflower, good-quality berry protein powder with some filtered water (use less water to get an ice cream-like texture).

Source of data and images: thesun

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