Health

Why Elsa Pataky doesn’t believe anything about diets

The Spanish actress shares her health and fitness secrets.
Loading the player...

Her husband Chris Hemsworth may be renowned for his biceps and washboard abs, but Elsa Pataky is body goals in her own right.

WATCH BELOW: Elsa Pataky does sunrise yoga

The Spanish actress, 44, is passionate about all things health and wellness and even released her own book Strong: How to Eat, Move and Live with Strength and Vitality in November 2019.

However, Elsa, who lives with her family in the NSW coastal town of Byron Bay, isn’t they type to eat nothing but green smoothies and spend hours in the gym. The mother-of-three eats a plant-based diet, full of vegetables, fruits, legumes, wholegrains, nuts, seeds and olive oil and she’s not about the D-word.

“I don’t believe anything about diets, like quick diets that you do before summer. I feel like miracles don’t exist. Mediterranean food every day, not just [for] periods of time,” she said on Sunrise.

elsa
Spanish beauty Elsa follows a Mediterranean, plant-based diet. (Credit: Instagram)

However she has revealed that her Thor star husband has influenced the way she eats by getting her into intermittent fasting.

“I was always like ‘Hmmmm, I don’t know!’ and it’s really hard, but then I started reading about it,” she told Body + Soul in 2019.

“Although, I was like ‘I don’t want to lose weight’ – because it’s a great way to lose weight, if you need to lose weight – but it won’t you won’t lose weight if you’re body doesn’t need to. And I learnt that, doing it. But I read that it was amazing for anti-ageing, so I was like ‘I’m in! I’m in!’. So he started it, and then I followed.

Elsa added: “But a lot of times, he starts something and I follow the exact opposite.”

elsa
Chris introduced Elsa to intermittent fasting. (Credit: Instagram)

She may follow a healthy way of living, but in her book Elsa admitted that it’s important to indulge from time-to-time and that she follows her trainer’s 80-20 rule.

“For 80 per cent of the time, you choose healthy foods. But for special occasions – Christmas, holidays, parties – enjoy yourself. That’s the other 20 per cent,” she wrote in Strong.

Elsa added that having a treat motivates her to start the next day with exercise.

“In general, I try to make my ‘cheat day’ a weekend day, but if I am feeling really low mid-week because of something that’s happened, I will give in to what my body asks for, whatever craving it is. Normally that is all I need, but I sometimes have a period where I’m feeling low for a few days, and that’s when I take the pressure off myself.”

So what is an Elsa Pataky cheat day treat?

“I love desserts and I love sugar,” she told 9Honey, before adding “pizza and Krispy Kremes… one, two, sometimes three.”

piza
Pizza tastes even better when it’s homemade with the kids. (Credit: Instagram)

When it comes to exercising, Elsa has been a lover of working out ever since she was in her teens but told Women’s Health in 2019 that she’s a fan of ‘exercise-snacking.’

“I can’t be without training for more than two weeks – I just get really nervous and my energy starts to go down,” she told the publication.

“When you start working out and your body’s changing and you’re achieving your goals, that’s such a great thing. So, I think that’s the motivation [to exercise] – feeling better and just being happy with you and knowing that you’re healthy. If you know you’re taking care of your body and you’re doing it for a reason, you can put aside the, ‘I can’t do it.’”

Weight training, stretching, yoga and surfing are just some of Elsa’s favourite ways to work out and she loves it even more when she’s doing it with Chris.

1
Elsa’s active lifestyle is just so Byron Bay. (Credit: Instagram)

“I love training with Chris. We do our own exercises separately, but then we really enjoy spending 30–40 minutes doing something we both like together,” she revealed in her book.

“If you can get your partner on board, you will be able to motivate each other on those days when the other doesn’t feel like moving. If you set yourself a challenge and add competition to the mix, I promise you that the session will be much more fun. Time will fly by and you will want to do it again,” she added, remarking that this was why she wanted to take up Chris’ favourite sport of surfing.

Elsa adds that she and her husband to get competitive with one another when it comes to fitness.

“If I’m like ‘I’ve read this and…’ then he’s like ‘Well I’ve read that…!’ Or ‘Well, I’ve tried this’ [laughs]. And we love it… So, yeah it’s very competitive in that way. But in saying that, what works for you may not work for me, so you really have to listen to your body… Some things that are good for him, are not for me.”

elsa
“What works for you may not work for me, so you really have to listen to your body…” (Credit: Instagram)

Related stories