michelle pfeiffer
by China DeSpain
Categories: Healthy Living, Lifestyle, Vegan
Tags: .
Photo: Photo Works / Shutterstock.com

At 54, actress Michelle Pfeiffer is still rocking the same flawless face and figure that initially made her famous more than three decades ago.

So what’s her secret? Easy. She sticks to a vegan diet.

Last June, Pfeiffer took the plunge into the vegan lifestyle after watching a program on CNN called “The Last Heart Attack.” The show went in-depth to search for answers for heart attack prevention, and included interviews with former president Bill Clinton, whose health dramatically improved when he went vegan.

Pfeiffer, a self-professed foodie, decided to give the diet a shot. She knew Clinton loved food, and had still managed to stick with the diet, so she figured there must be something to it.

Now that the actress has been vegan for several months, she’s experienced a host of health benefits firsthand, and can relate to exactly what kept Clinton on track.

“I remember watching that program thinking, ‘Clinton is a smart man and there’s true science behind this theory,'” she says. “So I cut out meats and dairy. After two months, my cholesterol shot down 83 points. That’s enough proof to me that it works.”

It turns out that the dietary change was a pretty dramatic switch for Pfeiffer, whose previous lifestyle was less than healthy.

“I was terrible,” she says. “I existed on cigarettes, Coca-Cola and coffee, and I got away with that for a while. And I never used to exercise. I think you begin to look and feel lousy the older you become, so now I eat really well. I don’t smoke and I’m learning meditation.”

Another source that Pfeiffer found inspiring was Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn‘s book “Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease: The Revolutionary, Scientifically Proven, Nutrition-Based Cure.” She said that the evidence given in the book helped her stay on track.

“I just felt like…there was science behind it. And, you know, it was sort of irrefutable. … I couldn’t not listen to it. My father died from cancer, and the older you get, there’s a lot of disease around you. And you see people struggling with chronic disease. You see people dying with terminal illnesses. And if in any way …. this is true, then you kind of have to listen to it.”

Listen to it she did. In addition to improving her health, the actress has maintained her stunning appearance. Pfeiffer credits her healthy lifestyle for her seemingly ageless looks. When she first made the change, she noted, “Vanity is right under there, but I have to say that it’s a close second with wanting to live long.”

Now she hopes that by holding back the clock, she can still land interesting roles in Hollywood.  “An actress’s window of opportunity is smaller than an actor’s,” she says. “You can be the sexiest man alive at 60, but it’s not like that if you’re a woman. It’s just one of those things. Deal with it.”

If her beauty, attitude and still-flourishing career are any indication, she’s dealing just fine.

About China DeSpain

China DeSpain is a San Antonio-based writer and blogger. She loves pop culture, animal rights, health and fitness, international travel, books and wigs. Follow China on Twitter: @ChinaDeSpain

View all posts by China DeSpain →
  • Dan

    She looks her age to me.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1407859657 Tim Swart

    She looks old, weathered, and sick. Vegan diet is not helping!! Go Paleo Michelle, and regain your health!! You need B12, and FAT!! Then you’ll look maybe 54, but right now 70ish isn’t doing you any good at all!!

    • marina

      She’s only been a vegan for a few months darling. She used to eat meat. Maybe thats why you think she looks her age, 54 years of eating meat. Mimi Kirk doesn’t look much different and she’s 75 and vegan for half her life.

    • pika

      You sound sick in the head. Go figure.

  • http://www.facebook.com/brenda.g.bautista Brenda Garten Bautista

    Michelle Pfeiffer is beautiful. I didn’t know she was a smoker, nasty habit! It’s very unlikely that only having been Vegan a few months and only having stopped smoking for a few months could have that much effect on her looks and health. Paleo is the new fad that Vegan used to be. It may last or it may not.

    • JoannaBackman

      they all jump on the current band wagon of trying to stave off aging. desperate women call for desperate measures. she looks 54 which it should be because she is 54.

  • http://www.facebook.com/brenda.g.bautista Brenda Garten Bautista

    Michelle looks great and seems to be one of the most down to Earth of the celebs. Whatever her age is, she is beautiful!

  • HereHere

    Her plunge in her cholesterol levels is outstanding! Very impressive. I’ll have to see if I can watch, “The Last Heart Attack”.

  • http://www.facebook.com/shewster Shelley Frost

    the only sources of cholsterol are from animal based foods – dairy, meat, eggs. the Paleo diet that consists of meat, meat and more meat will not only clog up your arteries, but also your colon – yuck! I’ll take being a Vegan any day just to avoid having polyps or worse being removed from my colon. BTW- Michelle is lovely in person too as I’ve met her a few times.

    • Adam Hall

      The only sources of Dietary Cholesterol. Your liver produces 80% of your serum cholesterol. 20% is not a lot, but its good start.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=750027958 Caroline Higgins

    She has probably had a facelift, definitely fillers, and botox. Not all that natural looking, but her labs are impressive.

  • Alice

    She looks way older than her age, imho.

  • Sebastian fairchild

    So she began a vegan diet several months ago and now appears “ageless”? I like some of these other comments, do people even read articles? Vegan is a excellent choice but it isn’t a magical time machine. I really like her. I also think she looks her age, and there is *gasp* nothing wrong with that!

    • Evangela

      You are right. She looks her age with makeup but since I have seen her without make-up, I know she looks older than 54 without it. But this is for the blind and gullible who actually believe that becoming a vegan is the fountain of youth.

    • ladylaugh51

      that’s exactly what I thought…you begin to read the article and think…wow, she’s vegan and stayed this beautiful, then you continue to read and find out — she’s only been on it for a few months…how on earth can someone claim (the author) that this is why she looks the way she looks…crap article with a catchy title!!

  • marina

    She’s only been a vegan a few months.Jeez give it a chance. She already improved her labs. Wait til she gets the “vegan glow ” phenomenon.

  • Malinda McHenry

    No offense but as an esthetician and I am 50 Michelle looks every bit her 54 years, in fact she could do with some filler and a good IPL to tighten her up. With technology no need to age naturally. In addition a Vegan diet is super high in Sugar period, whether natural or processed sugar ages you. Get the book Inflammation Nation if you want to slow your aging

    • pnv

      Please explain how a vegan diet is “super high in sugar”. I’d love to hear this one.

      • Irys13

        If you take any basic dietitian class, you’ll find out how fruits and most vegetables are packed with sugar. Especially the non-organic ones that have sugar compounds inserted into them during growth period to taste “better” to consumers.

        Even grains these days are fortified with sugar. It is very difficult to find pure, raw, foods in the supermarkets anymore. Even in places like Whole Foods one has to read labels carefully, to distinguish the ingredients.

    • pika

      Which age do you look? I sense your supposition of being ageless.

  • Leonard

    she looks amazing, so beautiful still

  • sootfoot5

    I don’t usually make personal comments about people I don’t know, but I just don’t see this lady as being a great beauty anymore. Attractive, yes, but she is clearly showing her age. The bags under her eyes and her aging neck tell the tale – not that aging is a bad thing! We all do it or at least hope we live that long. But this article is trying to sell a lifestyle and in doing so I believe they picked the wrong mascot. Maybe we should see some before/after shots of President Clinton? LOL!

    • pika

      If aging is not a bad thing, you certainly like to spin it as if it is, by commenting on what you perceive to be the ravished markings of time.
      Whatever makes you feel better.

      • sootfoot5

        Well, the article is talking about how she still looks great after all these years so talking about her looks in relation to her age is appropriate. You did read the article, didn’t you? As for making me feel better, what kind of comment is that? You disagree, you think she looks great, you think the vegan diet is the reason ,then SAY SO, but all your response does is make a persona attack on me. And while you don’t deserve any explanation, I will say for the record that I don’t find aging “bad” since I belong to the aged class myself. With age comes wisdom (usually) and while our society does not appreciate sagging skin we over 50’s can still be attractive.

      • pika


  • JoannaBackman

    ageless looks always have a lot to do with cosmetic surgery. we are all going to get old, God willing. Americans have a strange need to deny that fact, esp. women. and working on the outside doesn’t mean your insides aren’t the “real” age of your birth. working out, eating right, etc., are all what you should do, just don’t deny the years God has blessed you with.

  • glorija

    There’s no vegan diet. There is plant based diet. Being vegan means living ethically.

    • ladylaugh51

      hunh? the practice of abstaining from the use of animal products, particularly in diet, as well as following an associated philosophy that rejects the commodity status of sentient animals. A follower of veganism is known as a vegan

  • tech_lvr

    From what I read, she is ageless because of cigarettes, cokes and coffee, not vegan ism.
    Btw – I am vegan, so please don’t preach me about the benefits.