I Did Meghan Markle's Wedding Diet
How crazy was it?
It's official. American former Suits actress and self-proclaimed foodie Meghan Markle is about to be the newest member of the royal family. Since the news of her engagement to Prince Harry dropped in November, we've been dying for details of the wedding — from cake flavors (lemon-elderflower if you haven't been keeping up) to possible attendees/performers (SPICE GIRLS?!).
With the abundant amount of attention we've given to the royal nuptials, it wouldn't... be weird at all to mimic the diet the newlywed followed to prepare for her big day, right?
In solidarity — and to get a taste of what it takes to get royal-wedding-ready — I decided to eat just like Meghan Markle for a day.
While Meghan hasn't explicitly shared her diet for the wedding, it's easy to imagine that the healthy eating habits she followed while filming Suits is similar to how she's been eating in the months leading up to today. She's stated that she tries to "eat vegan during the week," but also tries to have a "little bit more flexibility" during the weekends. So she's not strictly vegan, and she likes to indulge herself two days a week, particularly with treats of fries, wine and ice cream. I can get behind that.
She's gone on to explain, "But at the same time, it's all about balance. Because I work out the way I do, I don't ever want to feel deprived. I feel that the second you do that is when you start to binge on things. It's not a diet; it's lifestyle eating."
It seems safe to say that it wouldn't be like Meghan to go on some outrageous regimen to fit into her dress, so the way she's already been eating is her "wedding diet."
In a 2015 interview with EyeSwoon, a lifestyle blog by Athena Calderone, Meghan explains how growing up in California influenced the way she eats:
"Fresh, fresh, fresh. We are so spoiled with our produce there, and my love of simple ingredients prepped well is completely linked to that. And the diet tends to be healthier as well — acai bowls, green juices, chopped salads, perfect sushi, grilled fish tacos... [sic] those are all things that make me think of home."
So I start my day with a PB Acai® Bowl from Juice Generation, a go-to juice and smoothie spot in New York City. Juice Generation has quite a few acai bowl variations to choose from, six in total, but I opt for one of the two bowls that include a nut butter. If I'm essentially going to have a smoothie for breakfast, I want to be sure it'll be filling enough to get me to lunchtime. It's what Meghan would do.
My gorgeously arranged bowl is full of superfoods: acai, almond milk and bananas are blended as a smoothie base; and cacao nibs, hemp granola, peanut butter, and strawberries are placed on top.
I'll admit it's not the first time I've had an acai bowl. Typically priced at $8-$12 a pop, it's a breakfast option I treat myself to only when I am willingly irresponsible. Tbh, I've bought an acai bowl for the past four days in a row, so... that needs to stop after today.
But it's hard to resist. Acai bowls feel like substantial meals but are light and gentle on your stomach — unlike bagels loaded with cream cheese, for instance. It really is like having a smoothie for breakfast, but because of the toppings and presentation, I feel like I'm actually eating something. I also love the coolness of the bowls. They're so refreshing, especially now that summer's soon on its way. I totally get why she's into them. Well, because I'm already into them.
So, what can I say? Breakfast like Meghan Markle has honestly just been Breakfast like Me — or rather, Breakfast like Me when I pretend I'm not on a budget.
Update: it's been 1.5 hours and I'm actually still. so. full. from that acai bowl. Like uncomfortably full. Those ultra-healthy bowls do fill you up. I just looked it up and that acai bowl was 670 calories. Do NOT underestimate them.
You can start to see that I already eat a lot like Meghan. Or does Meghan eat like me? It's totally up for debate.
Since I'm only eating like Meghan for a day, I struggled with trying to fit in California-style fish tacos and a salad, and dinner all in one day — especially after that loaded breakfast.
But lo and behold, Sweetgreen just released a Fish Taco-inspired warm salad bowl aka the exact solution to my dilemma.
Sweetgreen's generous warm bowl includes roasted steelhead salmon, shredded cabbage, cilantro, tortilla chips, warm quinoa, arugula; and is dressed with Sweetgreen hot sauce and lime-cilantro-jalapeno vinaigrette.
And it definitely fits Meghan's bill: like all Sweetgreen bowls, it's huge, and protein-packed thanks to plenty of quinoa and fish.
And like after all my Sweetgreen meals, I am filled to the brim. My coworker describes the feeling like this: "After I finish one in one sitting, I always feel like I wanna vomit."
Well, OK. Staying healthy definitely doesn't have to mean running on an empty stomach.
In a 2012 interview with TODAY, Meghan calls green juice an "easy pick me up."
She details, "...I always lean towards a juice — specifically a green juice. It's easy to fall into the trap of rushing for a coffee when you hit that 4 p.m. slump, but if I blend some apple, kale, spinach, lemon and ginger in my Vitamix in the morning and bring it to work, I always find that sipping on that is a much better boost than a cup of espresso... your body will thank you for nourishing it with so much fresh goodness."
At 3:55 p.m., I feel the 4 p.m. slump coming. It's real! Just like Meghan Markle said!
It is time.
I grab the greens 3 juice I bought from Pressed Juicery earlier in the day (that's behind-the-scenes magic for ya, folks). As you can see, it includes all the fruits and vegetables Meghan blends into her juice.
And low-key, I've been excited to drink this all day. I actually already drink this juice every so often (SEE? Meghan and I have so much in common). It's super refreshing and makes me feel so good inside.
According to Harper's Bazaar, Meghan considers herself a "pro-carb kind of girl," voicing her love for French fries — "I could eat French fries all day." And pasta — "...I love pasta."
"I love carbs — who doesn't love a carbohydrate?" She says. Isn't that what we all feel inside?
"The same goes for wine. Of course, I'm going to have that glass of wine — it's delicious and I enjoy it."
Meghan is. All. Of. Us.
So, for dinner, I head to L'Artusi, an Italian New York City favorite known especially for their pastas.
And I could have picked any solid Italian spot in the city — there's so many — but as fellow foodie Meghan Markle would do, I spent an additional hour, past 1 a.m. the night before, sifting through Yelp reviews and article recommendations to be *extra, extra* sure I wanted to have dinner here. Even though I have already eaten here before.
Sue me. I enjoy spending more time doing restaurant research than I do eating the food. It's called making an overly informed decision.
The restaurant has a casual-ish vibe, but is still bougie and well-designed. It seems right up Meghan's alley.
My first order of business is to order a glass of red wine — specifically Tignanello, Meghan's fave. She loves the wine so much she named her former food and lifestyle blog, The Tig, after it.
But as I scan the wine list, I realize they only sell Tignanello by the bottle, and at $300 apiece. Sorry, I'm just not about that life.
Instead, I order myself a more affordable single glass of wine.
And like any good Italian place, they leave me with fresh bread and olive oil as I happily wait for my main.
And I even get a little cup of soup, compliments of the chef.
It's even made with English peas — how fitting.
Meghan loves a good seafood pasta (as do I), so I order the Bavette, a linguine dish with Manila clams, jalapeno, and breadcrumbs. It's light with a spicy kick and lemon zing. This dish is pretty much what I would order as myself, Maggie Wong, and I can confirm that Meghan Markle and I have great taste in pasta.
Side note: If you save all your carbs for the end of the day, you will feel alcohol more quickly than usual.
Dessert time rolls around and although I am pretty darn full, my usual instinct at a restaurant like this is that I have to make room for dessert. If there's a will, there's a way. But then I remember that I didn't see much mention of Meghan regularly going for dessert.
My server asks if I'd like to see the dessert menu and I nod "of course" — because even if I don't plan to get any, I always like to know what my options could have been.
I get the menu and — I panic.
She MUST eat dessert on the reg, some where some way. I search for any sign of it.
COME ON, MEGHAN.
And let me tell you, chia seed pudding is nowhere to be found on the menu.
Let's take a moment of silence for all the desserts I could have eaten if I was just Maggie Wong instead of Meghan Markle.
And that, besides the rigorous workout regimen, acting career and royal lifestyle, is the only difference between Meghan and me.
Top Photo: GettyImages