If You Are What You Eat, You Won’t Believe the Marilyn Monroe Diet

Marilyn Monroe diet

At the height of her career, Marilyn Monroe was undoubtedly considered one of the most beautiful women in the world. The curvaceous, full figured actress certainly represented the antithesis of the scary thin, androgynous models of today.

The drastic change in society’s view of female beauty over the past 50 years has coincided with an equally drastic change in diet.

Artificially made “health” foods, powders, bars, drinks, mixes and supplements take center stage instead of the basic, traditional and highly nourishing fare such as what Ms. Monroe preferred.

The September 1952 edition of Pageant magazine highlighted the Marilyn Monroe diet, which was comprised of extremely simple fare, written in her own words.

For breakfast, Ms. Monroe whipped two raw eggs into a glass of warm milk to drink.  Eggs and milk were her favored morning fare even while traveling and staying in hotels.

marilyn monroe

Dinners were equally nutrient dense. Instead of opting for the best restaurant food which she undoubtedly could easily afford, Marilyn would stop at a market near her hotel and select steak, liver, or lamb chops for dinner. She would even broil them herself right in her hotel room with an electric oven!

Ms. Monroe also especially enjoyed raw carrots and usually ate several along with the meat she had chosen for the evening meal.

For treats, ice cream sundaes were the favorite on the way home from her evening drama classes. No mention of any bread, cakes, cookies or pies.

A diet focused on nutrient rich animal foods with a notable absence of grain based and starchy foods was likely a key reason she only required light exercise to maintain her enviable figure. While this doesn’t work for every woman, it does for many, even a curvy one like Ms. Monroe.  She spent only 10 minutes each morning working out with small weights. Light jogging, yoga and horseback riding were other active pursuits she enjoyed.  No special trainers, heavy lifting or sweaty workouts of the day were a part of her life.

Does the Marilyn Monroe Diet Offer Any Wisdom for Today’s Generation?

There has been renewed interest in recent months in the Marilyn Monroe diet with the marking of the 50th anniversary of her death last August.

While many would find the very simple Marilyn Monroe diet unbearably boring and uninspired, the basic premise she followed was sound albeit controversial and perhaps even quirky for her day.

  • No processed foods with the exception of an occasional ice cream treat.
  • Minimal inclusion of starchy, grain based or sugary foods like bread, pasta, bagels, cereal, crackers, cookies or other refined carbs.
  • Frequent consumption of liver, the number one nutrient dense food on the planet and nature’s multivitamin.
  • Balanced exercise without undue focus on constant or excessive working out to maintain one’s figure and muscle tone or to overcome poor dietary choices. As Paula Jager CSCS, Fitness Editor for this blog is fond of saying, “You can’t outwork a bad diet!”  Clearly, Marilyn Monroe’s focus on simple, self prepared, whole, nutrient dense foods afforded her the luxury of not having to find this out the hard way.

Could women both young and old derive some helpful pointers in their own diet and lifestyle regimens through knowledge of the Marilyn Monroe diet?  I, for one, believe they could!  What about you?

Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist

How to Eat Like Marilyn Monroe

Marilyn Monroe’s Diet and Exercise Routine

2 thoughts on “If You Are What You Eat, You Won’t Believe the Marilyn Monroe Diet

  1. It seems like it lacked variety and a highly acidic diet. Yes proteins help you stay in shape, but it is alkaline foods (such as vegetables) which will help you stay alive

    1. Really? I was always on the side of a BALANCED diet. To favor one natural food over another is betraying our genetics IMO.
      As far as the the alkaline angle…. Haven’t read anything conclusive as to pro or con. Can you help with support of that comment?

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