- Prince Harry is said to be on a diet to shape up before he ties the knot with Meghan Markle on Saturday.
- With millions of people expected to tune in to watch the nuptials, it’s no surprise Harry would be trying to look his best for their special day by “eating clean” – cutting out processed foods and upping his intake of healthy options like kale and quinoa.
- Here’s what happened when I ate like Harry for seven days.
Ahead of his wedding to Meghan Markle on Saturday, Prince Harry has been following a strict “clean eating” diet, the Daily Mail reported.
Michelle Dudash, a registered dietitian, wrote on the Food Network website that eating clean involves consuming whole, unprocessed foods such as fruits, vegetables, and whole grains that don’t contain added sugar, salt, and oils.
According to the Daily Mail, Harry has cut way back on processed food and carbs and boosted his intake of healthy options like kale, quinoa, and fruit-and-vegetable smoothies – he even told a group of Chicago students he’d given up pizza completely.
That’s drastically different from my usual eating habits, which consist of daily caramel coffees, all the sweet and salty snacks my office has to offer, and a lot of white rice.
I soon learned that clean eating is a lot more difficult than it seems. Here’s what happened when I ate like Harry for a week.
Day 1: I slipped and fell into Dunkin’ Donuts.
For breakfast, I decided to eat two mandarin oranges, because that was the only whole food I could think of.
A few hours later, I accidentally found myself at Dunkin’ Donuts ordering a caramel iced coffee.
For lunch I ate a bowl of spinach, and for dinner I had beans.
Not only did I feel guilty for cheating on my diet on the first day, but I felt embarrassed that I had failed so quickly. I was determined to learn more about eating clean and resist temptation on my second day.
Day 2: I turned over a new leaf.
After spending some time reading up on Harry’s diet and what it means to eat clean, I felt more confident in my ability to practice self-discipline.
I skipped breakfast because I overslept – which is decidedly not part of this diet – but I was on the right track by lunchtime. I had a grilled-chicken salad with carrots and peppers. I used extra virgin olive oil and black pepper as dressing. It was delicious!
For dinner, I had garlic shrimp with sautéed kale and quinoa. I didn’t know cooked kale would be so bitter, but I ate it anyway.
One of the most exciting things for me about Day 2 was that I actually enjoyed my food. I went into the diet expecting to be juicing and feeling hungry each day. But by the end of the second day, I was looking forward to concocting more creative dishes.
Day 3: I gave smoothies a try.
I started the day with a green smoothie made with kale, apples, bananas, and kiwi. It was surprisingly good, but I was still hungry.
Before I started this experiment, I often skipped breakfast because I woke up just in time to get ready for work. After making a conscious decision to eat better, I wanted to improve my overall quality of life, motivating me to get up earlier.
For lunch, I used some of my leftover quinoa and paired it with asparagus.
When I packed my food, I didn’t think I’d be particularly satisfied with it – I thought I’d need chicken or fish to make the meal more filling and enjoyable. But it turned out to be absolutely great. I realized you don’ always have to eat meat to have a solid meal.
Day 4: I stopped craving unhealthy food.
By the fourth day, I found myself craving fruits and vegetables instead of reminiscing about the unhealthy food from my previous life.
I had a bowl of mixed berries. I thought this breakfast was aesthetically pleasing, and at this point I started to feel proud of my journey. I went from drinking artificially sweetened coffee to enjoying real fruit with no added sugar.
I skipped lunch because I was running errands all day.
For dinner, I had salmon with tomatoes and red onions, broccolini, and orzo. It was the orzo that betrayed me – I thought it was a whole grain, but it’s actually pasta. But I was at an event, and this was the healthiest meal choice.
I resolved to do more research before eating something new.
Day 5: I’m feeling like a pro.
By Day 5, I felt as if I had the whole diet down pat, that I was slowly making a lifestyle change rather than depriving myself. Previously, I thought I’d live on rice forever, so I was really glad to find myself enjoying other foods.
I made delicious scrambled eggs with peppers and mushrooms for breakfast. When I saw how little time it took to make my eggs, I realized how easy it was to skip going out for coffee to cook a healthy breakfast at home.
For dinner, I made grilled chicken, carrots, and mixed-vegetable quinoa. If you’re wondering why I was eating quinoa every day, it’s because I was still on the rebound from my lifelong relationship with white rice.
Day 6: I developed a routine.
Even though I overslept, I packed some fruit to go. This small gesture made me feel proud of myself – I wouldn’t let running late be an excuse to grab fast food.
At lunch, my leftovers made another appearance. I still had some garlic shrimp, kale, and asparagus on hand, so I combined them and called it a meal.
I skipped dinner because I got home too late and couldn’t justify eating at midnight.
Day 7: I survived the experiment!
On my last day of doing Harry’s wedding diet, I had a smoothie for breakfast and – you guessed it – more quinoa and shrimp for dinner. I did switch up my lunch with a garden salad though.
The most difficult part of sticking to this diet was drinking only water. Most other drinks have tons of added sugar, so I avoided them altogether.
At the end of the week, I looked and felt great. My skin seemed clearer and brighter, and I felt more energized. One added bonus I didn’t expect is that once I got into the swing of things, I was able to create a variety of enjoyable meals within the parameters of “clean eating.”
I plan on incorporating what I learned this week into my daily diet. Instead of eating rice every day, I’ll substitute quinoa a few days a week and add more salad, fruit, and vegetables to my meals. Rather than getting a slushie when summer comes, I’ll continue making fruit smoothies.
Even though I committed to this experiment for only seven days, I don’t see myself going back to drinking caramel coffee for breakfast.
Eating healthy had an undeniable ripple effect. When I had a “clean” breakfast, I wanted to keep the momentum going with a healthy lunch. By dinner, I had to eat clean because I’d feel as if all my efforts were in vain if I settled on unhealthy food.