Superman Henry Cavill Had to Go Through a Tormenting Unhealthy Practice Bodybuilders Do to Look Shredded

Published 02/11/2023, 1:30 PM EST

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With the explosion in the popularity of superhero movies, nearly all leading men in Hollywood now have superhero physiques. Even former comedian, Kumail Nanjiani, built the superhero physique to play an ‘Eternal’ in Marvel’s Eternals. However, a few actors stand out in the crowd of buff Hollywood action heroes. Henry Cavill is among those actors. While Cavill always had an athletic build, he underwent a bodybuilding transformation for the 2013 DC film Man of Steel. In 2019, the actor appeared on ‘The Graham Norton Show’ and revealed the struggles of achieving the shredded look.

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While promoting the first season of his then-upcoming Netflix show, The Witcher, Henry explained how actors dehydrate themselves to achieve the ripped look for shirtless scenes. While Cavill didn’t mention it, bodybuilders go through the same process before bodybuilding shows.

An unhealthy practice that is the norm in bodybuilding

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On December 20, 2019, the Man of Steel star joined Ruth Jones and Rob Brydon of Gavin and Stacy on The Graham Norton Show. During their conversation, Norton asked Henry Cavill about actors dehydrating themselves for shirtless scenes. Cavill confirmed that Graham Norton had heard right. “Oh yeah yeah, that is by (far) the worst part of it (getting shredded for a role),” said the English actor.

Actors often claim that dieting to get shredded is the hardest part of building the Hollywood physique. Cavill revealed that gradually dehydrating the body is worse than a strict diet. The other guests asked if the actor drank water during the dehydration period. However, the Mission Impossible: Fallout star clarified, “It’s not, ‘no water for three days.'”

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“On the first day, you’ll have a liter and a half, the second day half a liter, and then on the third day, no water and you’ll shoot on the fourth,” explained Cavill. However, the English actor also explained how he felt by the end of the process. “You get to the point on the last day where you can smell water, nearby,” said the Hollywood superstar.

Dehydrating to look shredded, increase vascularity and achieve a ‘dry’ look is something bodybuilders do every time before competing. While it enhances the look, dehydration is not sound for one’s health.

A disclaimer for the adventurous at heart

During the show, Henry Cavill pointed out the practice wasn’t healthy. He isn’t the only one who came on the Graham Norton Show and warned anyone adventurous enough to try it. Hugh Jackman is among the superhero actors, and he once talked about the risks of dehydrating on the show.

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“You can lose up to 10 pounds, which is four kilos of (water) weight,” said Jackman. He also said no one should try it at home, alone.

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Watch this story | “Bible of Bodybuilding”–7x Mr. Olympia Arnold Schwarzenegger Once Explained the Book that Got Him Into Bodybuilding

What do you make of the practice? Do you think such practices put actors and bodybuilders at unnecessary risk? Write your views in the comments.

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Written by:

Sagnik Bagchi

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Sagnik Bagchi is a US Sports writer for EssentiallySports. He has completed his Bachelor's and Master's in English Literature from the University of Calcutta. He has experience working as a freelance MMA writer for Sportskeeda.
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Edited by:

Pritam Priyedarshi

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