007: A license to be ill? BBC weighs in on James Bond's diet

Iconic action hero could use more carbs, experts say

What do curry, kebabs, and caviar all have in common? They top the list of James Bond's favorite foods, according to a BBC feature examining the British spy's eating habits on the 50th anniversary of the first Bond film.

The Bond diet is "a man diet" says Catherine Collins of the British Dietetic Association. "Men like the more carnivorous approach," she explains, noting Bond's preference for foods like eggs, bacon, lamb, beef, stews, and seafood.

The action hero's love for beef and lamb provide him with a rich source of vitamin B12, which would help him recover quickly from "all those cuts and grazes he gets" and help "keep him mentally alert," Collins adds.

And while the meals he orders could perhaps use "more vegetables and carbs" to balance the "cholesterol-artery clogging" qualities in his food choices, the high-action lifestyle of the archetypically fit British spy lets him get away with it.

However, the average Bond fan's more sedentary lifestyle would fit poorly with such an imbalanced diet. Edward Biddulph—author of License to Cook, which features recipes from the Bond books—notes that 007's food pattern is "almost the opposite of what we ought to be eating."

But what about all those martinis (shaken, not stirred)? Bond might benefit from a few more "alcohol-free days," Collins says. But she notes that Bond never drinks excessively. The quantity of alcohol he consumes would be unlikely to do much damage, or—more importantly—make him too sluggish to save the world from this week's villain (Warwicker, BBC Food, 10/5).

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