Darjeeling, chocolate, horse riding: how Elizabeth II lived to 96 without sports and diets

Darjeeling, chocolate, horse riding: how Elizabeth II lived to 96 without sports and diets
Darjeeling, chocolate, horse riding: how Elizabeth II lived to 96 without sports and diets
13 September, 09:55In the worldPhoto: Desmond Groves / The Guardian
The queen led a generally healthy lifestyle, but at the same time did not deprive herself of regular excesses like roasts, champagne and desserts.

The British Queen, who died on September 8 at the age of 96, was the world's oldest head of state. In recent years, her official duties were somewhat reduced, but Elizabeth II worked to the very end: just two days before her death, she met with the new British Prime Minister Liz Truss.

Details of the Queen's health were not made public, but it is known that throughout her life, Elizabeth II was under the supervision of a special medical team that takes care of members of the royal family, reports Business Insider. However, the queen did not cause much trouble to her doctors: in February of this year she caught covid, but in general over the past twenty years she has been in the hospital only three times.

By nature, she was in good health. Writer Brian Kozlowski, author of Hail the Queen! Long Live the Queen! 23 Rules for Living From Britain's Longest-Reigning Monarch, said that his character "aged incredibly well and is an example of health and well-being." At the same time, Elizabeth II never specifically went in for sports and allowed herself to deviate from the diet all her life. Good genes, moderation, stoicism - that's what allowed her to always be in shape.

The Queen was a supporter of natural physical activity - she loved to walk quickly in the company of her corgis and ride horseback. When she visited the United States with Prince Philip in 1991, then-President George W. Bush, in his acceptance speech, mentioned the Queen's long walks, which "made even the Secret Service gasp." Elizabeth II spent a lot of time in nature and especially loved the Scottish countryside, where her favorite residence, Balmoral, was located.

Like many of her peers, who experienced the hardships of World War II and considered gourmet food to be something not entirely worthy, the queen was quite unpretentious in food. By the way, in this she differed from her husband: Prince Philip loved to eat and talk about food. According to chef Darren McGrady, who cooked for her from 1982 to 1993, the Queen was "very disciplined". The first thing she did in the morning was a freshly brewed Earl Gray without milk or sugar, which was served to her in a bone china cup, and ate a few biscuits. Breakfast was usually oatmeal and fruit, sometimes toast with jam or an omelet with smoked salmon and truffles.

Before dinner, the queen drank gin with Dubonnet ( a French fortified wine liqueur flavored with cinchona bark and herbs) with a slice of lemon and plenty of ice as an aperitif, and then ate something simple like fish and vegetables. For example, grilled Dover flounder with spinach or zucchini or grilled chicken with salad. According to McGrady, the Queen adhered to the rule "no starch" - did not eat potatoes, rice or pasta.

The Queen drank Darjeeling afternoon tea every day. It was served with sandwiches with cucumber, smoked salmon, egg and mayonnaise or ham and mustard. In addition, tea was also served with tiny raspberry jam sandwiches cut into English penny-sized slices, butter biscuits, ginger, fruit and chocolate sponge cake.

Dinner was usually fillet of beef or venison, pheasant or salmon from the royal farms at Sandringham and Balmoral. On Sundays, Elizabeth liked to dine on roasted meats.

The Queen was known to love chocolate, whether it was a luxury brand or from a regular supermarket like Nestlé, and chocolate biscuit cake. Every day she certainly ended with a glass of champagne.

Elizabeth did not use expensive cosmetics: all her life she preferred products from the budget British brand Cyclax, and her main rule in skin care was to stay away from the sun. No wonder her favorite vacation spot, Balmoral, is not in the sunniest of Scotland.

For all we know, the queen had a strong psyche. Meghan Markle, who often exposes herself as a victim of someone's intrigues, in this sense is her complete opposite. According to her biographer Kozlowski, Elizaveta was brought up in a culture that required a person to be stoic, always consider the glass half full and restrain their emotions. Add to this the fact that the queen never smoked or suffered from insomnia, and her long and healthy life becomes quite understandable. By the way, her biographer Kozlowski was sure that Elizabeth would live longer than her mother, who died at 101.

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