“Beychella”—another not recommended fad diet

I just read that to get ready for her Coachella concert–now viewable in the Netflix doc Homecoming–Beyonce went on a super restrictive diet.

From the Queen Bee herself: “In order for me to meet my goals, I’m limiting myself to no bread, no carbs, no sugar, no dairy, no meat, no fish, no alcohol – and I’m hungry.”

Of course you’re hungry, honey. That is a lot to say “no” to. A lot. Especially considering the physically demanding nature of the work.

She acknowledges it involved sacrifice. And that’s Beyonce. A woman with a team of people helping her meet her goals. Now, I’ve seen the documentary and yes, she looks amazing. Strong and gorgeous. But bear in mind that it’s one night. It’s her job. She has help. She has a lot going for her genetically and aesthetically speaking to begin with.

The truth of the matter is that a diet involving that much deprivation is simply not sustainable.

We blog a lot about fad diets and diets in general. Most of our messaging is negative because most people do not manage to lose weight and keep it off for any reasonable length of time. It can be done. There are some weight loss unicorns. They mostly have had to make significant permanent changes and commit to a life of intensive activity. Even then, it is no guarantee because metabolic damage is a known side-effect of repeated dieting and the under-eating restrictive diets often prescribe.

Fad diets that take out whole food groups are tempting because yes, of course you’ll likely lose weight if you stop eating most of the things you regularly enjoy. But if it’s not sustainable as a permanent change (and the Beychella diet is not) then the rebound effect of gaining it back is extremely likely.

Instead of another fad diet, consider process changes that get you making healthy activity and food choices (like Sam’s ten fruits and veggies thing). These sorts of tweaks are sustainable and good for you regardless of whether you lose weight or don’t. You won’t be deprived. Instead of punishing yourself or trying to whip yourself into shape, process changes can actually be acts of self love.

This is not to deny the awesomeness of Beyonce or the real sacrifice she had to make to be “show ready.” But like fitness models (see “She May Look Healthy But…Why Fitness Models aren’t Models if Health”), the required prep regime is not a long term solution and isn’t even particularly good for you (or for Beyonce).

If you haven’t seen Homecoming, here’s a link to the trailer and you can catch the film on Netflix:

4 thoughts on ““Beychella”—another not recommended fad diet

  1. Wow, the trailer looks hypnotic– I am definitely going to watch this. I have such mixed emotions about these stringent processes that celebrities go through (especially women) to portray themselves while doing their art. Of course they have the right to do what they will in service of their art and their business. But it costs them, and it costs us. I don’t see how we (including me) can shift into seeing more types of bodies as beautiful and powerful and pleasing until we actually see more variety in public figures. But that sounds like it’s putting the burden on them. Again, I don’t know how to resolve some of these feelings. It’s good to know they are there, though. Thanks for laying this out for us.

  2. Wow. The only thing I like about that diet is the name: Beychella. It has a nice ring to it but other than that it sounds bloody awful.
    I’m reminded of the sandwich board sign that my local chiro/physio clinic had out which said “Beyonce has the same number of hours in the day as you do.” I think it was intended to be motivational but I found it so uninspiring and demoralizing that at my next appointment I actually mentioned it! Because although it is true (there are only 24 hours in a day) it also true that Beyonce has an entire team/staff with the sole job of ensuring that she can focus on her singing, body, career, image–and helping her attain that. Who knows how successful other women would be if we had all that support too? In my world, I am my own personal trainer, chef, chauffeur, teen supervisor, cleaner, personal shopper.

  3. “…no bread, no carbs, no sugar, no dairy, no meat, no fish, no alcohol…”

    Damn. If I did that, the only thing left in my daily intake would be black coffee! 😉

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