'Freak diets don't work' - Mary Berry reveals how she stays slim on Bake Off despite tasting '36 cakes a day'
Mary Berry can eat a staggering 36 cakes per day when filming The Great British Bake Off.
The 81-year-old chef is widely considered a national treasure, and has enjoyed a career comeback through Bake Off, which sees her judge baking hopefuls alongside Paul Hollywood.
Testing the sweet treats means Mary has to watch what she eats the rest of the day though, and she sticks to soup or starters for lunch if it's a filming day.
"I have soup at lunchtime and I know exactly how many calories are in that soup. I don’t have bread with it but I might have a salad if it’s very hot," she told Good Housekeeping magazine.
"I’ll have a couple of starters if I am in a hotel in the evening. That’s it. Otherwise I will put on weight because I am having to taste 36 cakes a day. It’s my job."
Mary showcases her petite figure in a variety of trendy ensembles on the show, with the jackets she sports on screen often selling out minutes after the show airs. However, she will never slim down by adopting a fad diet, insisting healthy eating is the only way she is interested in shedding the pounds.
"Freak diets, I don’t think work," she said. "It’s control. Have a smaller plate. I have mountains of vegetables – green vegetables, broccoli, beans. I have twice as much as my husband does."
The Great British Bake Off returned to screens on Wednesday, with church pastor Lee Banfield the first sent home after failing to impress with his offerings.
And the new series looks set to be the most successful to date, after breaking records with an average of 10.4 million viewers tuning in for the premiere.
The episode had a peak audience of 11.2 million, meaning it beat the most-watched Rio Olympics coverage, which reached 11.1 million viewers at its peak on BBC.