An Inside Look at Madonna’s Diet – Could You Follow It?

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According to CNN’s Stephanie Busari, Modonna is the most influential female recording artist of all time. She is also the top-selling female artist of all time.

And at 54-years-old, Madonna’s lean and taut body is the envy of women half her age. “It would be nice to have her biceps at some point in my life,” writes New York Magazine’s Rebecca Harrington.

So in that spirit, Harrington decided to attempt what she describes as Madonna’s draconian fitness and nutritional regimes, and notes Madonna follows a very strict macrobiotic diet that prohibits the consumption of wheat, eggs, meats, and dairy, in favor of the benefits of something called “sea vegetables.”

In order to closely follow Madonna’s diet, Harrington bought “Mayumi’s Kitchen,” a cookbook written by Madonna’s former private chef Mayumi Nishimura, who Harrington characterizes as an apostle of macrobiotic living.

Harrington decided to follow the centerpiece diet in “Mayumi’s Kitchen” — a ten-day detox diet, and confesses this is the strictest diet she has ever followed.

MDNA 2012 MSG from Blanca on Vimeo.

Day One:

I start the day with a nourishing portion of miso soup and brown rice. I was worried I would not have the stomach for miso soup in the morning, but I really enjoy it and it’s rather filling. It’s so filling that I skip lunch and don’t eat until dinnertime, which is a stew of barley and seaweed. It is not very good and I sort of regret I missed out on the soy meat and spiral rice pasta of lunch. But do you think Madonna engages in regrets of this nature?

Day Two:

In order to give your “stomach a break” from the tremendous strain of sea-vegetable barley stew, Mayumi suggests that you start off day two with a heaping portion of steamed greens and a Fuji apple. I am getting a little hungry now, I must admit. I am seeing the puritanical nature of this diet. A woman cannot survive on greens alone.

Day Three:

I make something called tofu tartar sauce which is just tremendously disgusting and lumpier than it should be because I do not have a blender.

Day Four:

I start my day off with corn in a plum-paste sauce. It is good, actually. It gives me a sugar rush because I have not had sugar for several days, even in plum-covered-corn form.

Days Five and Six:

Madonna, at least in her younger years, took time off from her rigorous dieting schedule on the weekends and ate whatever she wanted. In honor of her, I do the same, but the truth is, I am basically dying on this diet. I don’t know how Madonna lives. It is so hard to give up all those foods. Literally every food! It is not Mayumi’s fault. She is doing the best she can with tofu tartar sauce, but there is just not all that much you can do.

Day Seven:

Back on the diet, I have to make tofu cheese for a quinoa salad I will consume in three days. Why do I have to make this cheese now? Because the tofu has to be spread with miso and kept in a sealed container for three days so that it rots a little, not unlike cheese! Spreading this tofu with miso is actually hard. I am so hungry I eat a little of the raw miso .

Later, I decided to go out to (macrobiotic!) dinner with a friend who notices I keep really cleaning my plate on this diet in a compulsive way I never do normally. “It’s like you are starving!” he says. I feel like I am starving but I am definitely not. I am eating food. I am just hungrier than I have ever been. I mean, as old Madge once said, “How can you be LIKE a virgin?” So how could it be LIKE I am starving? I am not actually starving, I don’t think.

Day Eight:

Today, I decide to have a macrobiotic dinner party. I invite all my usual friends who seem decidedly unhappy about this new theme. I decide to make Mayumi’s sweet-and-sour tempeh and brown rice with almonds on it, with a side of sauerkraut. Guess what? Everyone loved the sauerkraut, which I bought from a store. It was universally acclaimed as the best dish there.

Days Nine and Ten:

I saved the tofu cheese for my last meal on the diet. It has been rotting in my fridge relatively unmolested for three days and now it is time for its moment in the sun. I combined the tofu cheese with quinoa to make a gross salad. The tofu cheese tastes surprisingly like tofu, yet combined with quinoa it has an odd granularity. I am supposed to finish the diet with a tofu scramble, but I can’t even do it. I have some fried chicken instead.

So, in conclusion, is Madonna’s diet hard? You bet your ass it is. Is it fun? No! Do you have to eat sauerkraut? Yes! But what I really realized is that Madonna is a feminist revolutionary and it’s hard to be on a revolutionary’s diet.

She danced in a wedding dress! She called David Mamet a chauvinist! She made a sex book called Sex! Paul McCartney may have suspiciously brown hair but no one says he tries too hard to be young! I guess the question is this: did Susan B. Anthony eat sauerkraut every day? Probably she did.

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Spence Cooper
Inquisitive foodie with a professional investigative background and strong belief in the organic farm to table movement. Author of Bad Seeds: A FriendsEAT Guide to GMO's. Buy Now!
Spence Cooper


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