The Wim Hof Diet + Strict Fasting Routine Explained

We often like to look to our mentors, idols, or heroes to learn the ways that they lead their lives in hopes that emulating the same practices in our own lives will yield similar types of success.

For example, you might be a marathon runner who wants to take running form tips from Eliud Kipchoge, or a sprinter who analyzes old footage of the great and late Flo-Jo sprinting down the track en route to the world record, thinking this will improve your own performance.

Similar thinking can be applied to diet. Such as the Wim Hof diet.

If you follow the dietary practices of a fitness guru or someone with the physique you are seeking to attain, there might be a better chance that you, too, can achieve the body composition you are looking for.

For this reason, lots of people are curious about The Wim Hof diet and Wim Hof’s fasting routine. But who is Wim Hof, and what does Wim Hof eat? Is Wim Hof vegan? 

In this article, we will take a quick look at what Wim Hof eats and what he believes is the best diet for health.

We will cover: 

  • Who Is Wim Hof?
  • What Is The Wim Hof Diet Plan?
  • What Does Wim Hof Eat?
  • Is Wim Hof Vegan?
  • Foods Wim Hof Does Not Eat

Let’s dive in! 

Wim Hof in ice.
Flickr

Who Is Wim Hof?

Wim Hof is a Dutch endurance athlete often better known by his nickname, “The Iceman,” a moniker earned due to the fact that he’s broken numerous records related to extreme cold exposure.

According to the bio on the website for the Wim Hof Method, Wim Hof holds records such as running a half marathon north of the Arctic Circle barefoot, climbing Mount Kilimanjaro in shorts, and standing in a container while covered with ice cubes, which he was able to endure for more than 112 minutes.

He has also swum under the ice for 57.5 meters, among other feats.

Wim Hof is known for the Wim Hof Method, a breathing and cold therapy method that he believes helps people control their bodies, heart rate, and circulation, and is what he reports helps him withstand the extreme temperatures of conditions he has endured.

Mount Kilamangaro

What Is The Wim Hof Diet Plan?

Wim Hof essentially follows a modified version of the OMAD diet, which stands for One Meal a Day.

The OMAD diet is essentially the strictest form of a time-restricted eating type of intermittent fasting diet in that it involves fasting for 23 hours and then consuming only one meal per day.

Wim Hof’s eating pattern involves mostly fasting the entire day until 6:00 PM when he eats his only meal for the day. 

He then starts his overnight fast and then fasts all the way until midday, where he might eat some fresh fruit and a handful of nuts, but not a full meal.

Basically, Wim Hof only eats one full meal a day—his dinner at 6:00 PM—but he usually has a light snack earlier in the day, around lunch time.

Therefore, Wim Hof’s diet isn’t technically the same as the OMAD diet, but it is a strict intermittent fasting diet.

He typically fasts for 16 hours a day, breaking the fast with fruit and nuts and then fasting the rest of the day until dinner.

In addition to a strict diet, Wim Hof follows a strict exercise routine.

A bowl of pasta.

What Does Wim Hof Eat?

The majority of Wim Hof‘s caloric and nutrient intake occurs at his 6:00 PM meal. This meal typically consists of pasta and vegetable soup.

As mentioned, during the day, Wim Hoff doesn’t always practice entirely strict intermittent fasting, as he often will consume fresh fruit and nuts.

He will also have green tea and black coffee while fasting, as well as plenty of water.

Wim Hof only eats fresh fruits and vegetables—nothing canned or processed in any way.

There are occasional times when Wim Hof will also enjoy a beer after his pasta and vegetable soup meal, though after he does, he may make compensatory adjustments by reducing his portions or caloric intake at his next 6:00 PM dinner.

The macronutrient composition or macronutrient ratio of Wim Hof’s diet is predominantly skewed towards a high-carbohydrate intake.

Typically, between the fruit, pasta, and vegetable soups, Wim Hof consumes about 70% of his calories from carbohydrates, 10% from protein, and 20% from fat (mostly from nuts).

This is an extremely low-protein diet compared to most modern, omnivorous diets, as well as most plant-based diets.

A bowl of vegetable soup.

Is Wim Hof Vegan?

Wim Hof follows a plant-based diet because he does not consume any animal proteins, including beef, pork, poultry, seafood, and fish, nor does he consume animal products such as dairy and eggs.

He reportedly became a vegetarian around the age of 20 after being raised on an omnivorous diet.

He often follows a strict vegan diet, but he hasn’t officially confirmed whether he is fully vegan or just vegetarian with his plant-based diet.

Foods Wim Hof Does Not Eat

As can be surmised, the list of foods that Wim Hoff avoids is much longer than the list of foods that he eats.

Here are some of the foods Wim Hof will not eat:

  • Animal Proteins: Beef, pork, chicken, turkey, lamb, duck, fish, and seafood.
  • Dairy Products: Milk, cheese, yogurt, cottage cheese, butter, cream, and ice cream.
  • Eggs
  • Processed Foods
  • Hydrogenated Oils
  • Condiments like mayonnaise, ketchup, jelly, sauces, etc.
  • Genetically-modified foods
  • Any foods with hormones, antibiotics, or pesticides
  • Any foods with added sugars
A variety of fruit.

Wim Hof believes that while fresh, “clean” foods improve health, any processed food will spoil a good diet and is detrimental to health.

He also does not believe in taking supplements of any kind because supplements are processed ingredients rather than foods in their natural form.

Beer is the only processed food Wim Hof occasionally indulges in.

Ultimately, Wim Hof believes that we can control the health of our body through our diet; furthermore, he believes that his particular diet and intermittent fasting protocol is the ideal nutrition and eating plan to optimize the health and function of his body.

Objectively, The Wim Hof diet is probably much stricter and lower in protein, calories, and possibly even fat than the standard Western diet, and many nutritionists and dietitians would probably agree that it’s not a nutritious, sustainable diet, especially with his rigorous fasting routine.

However, everyone has a unique biochemistry, and we are all essentially an experiment of n=1. Given Wim Hof‘s impressive feats of endurance, his diet is clearly working for him!

A variety of nuts.
Photo of author
Amber Sayer is a Fitness, Nutrition, and Wellness Writer and Editor, and contributes to several fitness, health, and running websites and publications. She holds two Masters Degrees—one in Exercise Science and one in Prosthetics and Orthotics. As a Certified Personal Trainer and running coach for 12 years, Amber enjoys staying active and helping others do so as well. In her free time, she likes running, cycling, cooking, and tackling any type of puzzle.

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