In the decades spent waiting to ascend to the throne, King Charles has always ensured he maintained a strict diet and rigid daily exercise routine.
While he will now step away temporarily from public-facing duties, he has lived an impressively healthy life up to now - barring several injuries from a lengthy polo career and two coronavirus infections during the pandemic.
In a list of 70 facts released by Clarence House in 2018 to mark the then-Prince Charles’ 70th birthday, it was revealed that he restricts himself to only two meals a day.
Fact number 20 listed: “The Prince does not eat lunch.”
Gordon Rayner, former royal correspondent at The Telegraph, once said that the King believes lunch is a “luxury” that interferes with his busy schedule.
His former press secretary Julian Payne also said: “The King doesn’t eat lunch; so, an early lesson I learnt when out on the road with him was to have a big breakfast or bring a few snack bars with you to keep you going. The working day is pretty relentless. Beginning with the radio news headlines and a breakfast of seasonal fruit salad and seeds with tea.”
Homemade bread with nutrient-rich flours such as rye and spelt are also said to be preferred by the King, as well as eggs and side salads with each meal.
To be more specific, coddled eggs that have been cooked for just two to three minutes are said to be his favourite, and he is know to enjoy mashing them into a mayonnaise texture.
Wild mushrooms and plums foraged from his gardens at Highgrove are also among his favourite items to eat, as well as salmon and cheese and biscuits.
Charles also abstains from meat and fish on two days of the week, while he avoids dairy products additionally on one of those days, according to an interview with the BBC in 2021.
The month that Charles was crowned, Buckingham Palace posted a listing for a live-in vegan chef to prepare meals for the monarch.
He has previously stated the main purpose of his intermittent veganism is for its benefit to the environment, and that he stays away from meat that has been sourced frm factory farms.
The king is also passionate about organic produce, as former royal chefs Darren McGrady and Carolyn Robb told Delish in May 2023.
Mr McGrady said Charles focused on organic produce “before it was even invented”, with Ms Robb echoing that the monarch’s farm was one of the first to be organically certified in all of the UK.
Alongside his strict diet, the monarch is also believed to stick to a rigid exercise routine.
The Telegraph reported in 2020 that Charles completes the Royal Canadian Air Force’s five basic exercises, referred to as the 5XB plan, twice a day.
The regimen was designed for pilots who need to be able to exercise without a gym.
The 11-minute workout involves two minutes of stretches, one minute of sit-ups, one minute of back and leg raises, one minute of push-ups and six minutes of running on the spot, while doing 10 eagle jumps every 75 steps.
In his explosive memoir Spare, Prince Harry revealed that the King regularly performed half-naked headstands to manage his chronic pain from old polo injuries.
The Duke of Sussex wrote that Charles carried out these exercises daily while wearing a pair of boxers while “propped against a door or hanging from a bar like a skilled acrobat”.
Queen Camilla also revealed that the King is an avid walker. She described her husband in 2020, when he was in his early 70s, as “probably the fittest man of his age I know”.
“He’ll walk and walk and walk,” she said. “He’s like a mountain goat. He leaves everybody miles behind.”
She went on to say that King Charles often goes on miles-long walks.