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The Many Diets of Steve Jobs

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Before Steve Jobs’ biography was released today, there was always speculation over what kind of diet the Apple CEO was on. Turns out that answer is a bit more complicated than any of us would have believed; as it appears that Jobs pursued a number of regimens over his lifetime in an effort to attain optimal health, enlightenment, etc. Indeed, it almost appears as if the late tech giant subscribed to the same minimalist eating habits that in many ways also defined the products he invented. Some highlights as gleaned by Entertainment Weekly:

  • Jobs says the book “Diet for a Small Planet” inspired him to pretty much swore off meat for good.” But biographer Walter Isaacson notes that, “the book also reinforced his tendency to embrace extreme diets, which included purges, fasts, or eating only one or two food, such as carrots or apples, for weeks on end.” For those not familiar with the 1971 bestseller by Frances Moore Lappé, it was the first book to slam the meat industry as wasteful and a contributor to global food scarcity; arguing that the only way to create a more harmonious world would be through a plant-based diet.
  • Jobs swore off deodorant for a year in 1977, saying that he had no need for the stuff while he was on a fruitarian diet.
  • As he got older, Steve did more fastings, cleansings, and other restrictive diets. “He would spend weeks eating the same thing—carrot salad with lemon, or just apples—and then suddenly spurn that food and declare that he had stopped eating it. He would go on fasts, just as he did as a teenager, and he became sanctimonious as he lectured others at the table on the virtues of whatever regimen he was following.”

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