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Last Updated: Friday, 24 October, 2003, 08:01 GMT 09:01 UK
Blaine back on solid food
David Blaine in hospital
Blaine is expected to make a full recovery
David Blaine has had his first taste of solid food since ending his 44-day starvation stunt, doctors have said.

Blaine is now on a diet of fruit salad, bagels and cheese after emerging on Sunday from the Perspex box where he had spent 44 days without food.

He is making a "satisfactory recovery" in hospital, but has suffered sleepless nights and stomach cramps.

He is not likely to leave his London hospital until at least the weekend, his medical team have said.

His first normal food was a handful of potato crisps, they said.

"I have enjoyed this quiet time to reflect upon my experience during my recovery," Blaine said in a statement.

He also thanked his fans for their support.

Blood tests

Until now he has been fed a nutritional drink packed with high levels of vitamins - the quantities have been gradually increased during his treatment.

The re-feeding process has been painful, but has gone to plan, his doctors said.

Results of his blood tests have also indicated "very satisfactory progress".

David Blaine
Blaine was taken to hospital straight after emerging from the box
The medical team, led by clinical nutrition expert Professor Powell-Tuck, say they expect him to fully recover - but it may take several months.

Blaine, who began his career as a street magician, staged the public endurance test to push his body and mind to the limit, he said.

About 250,000 people visited him in the box near Tower Bridge in London, while 10,000 saw him walk free on Sunday.

Life-changing

A further 2.5 million people watched events live on Sky One.

He broke down on his exit, telling the crowd: "This has been one of the most important experiences in my life."

But he was also subjected to attacks and abuse during his 44 days, with members of the public throwing eggs, driving golf balls at the box and trying to cut his water supply.

Having restarted on solid food with a few mouthfuls of crisps, Blaine is moving onto a diet including fruit salad and bagel and cheese.

"David Blaine broke his fast last night with a small handful of potato crisps," said doctors at the London Independent Hospital.

  • On Thursday, magistrates handed Henry Cookson, 28, from Fulham, west London, a three-month conditional discharge for throwing balloons filled with pink paint at Blaine's box during the stunt.

    Cookson pleaded guilty to criminal damage after firing five balloons at the Perspex box on 28 September using a 2ft long catapult.

    Defence solicitor Mark Haslam told Tower Bridge Magistrates' Court that Cookson accepted his behaviour was "irresponsible", saying it was "a prank that had gone horribly wrong".

    But Mr Haslam said his client had been made an example of following a series of similar incidents by passers-by, including the throwing of food and golf balls.




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