I frequently feel as if I’m from another planet when it comes to diet. I’m reminded of a scene from Woody Allen’s 1973 movie ‘Sleeper’ where he plays The Happy Carrot health food store owner Miles Monroe and ends up being brought back to life 200 years in the future after some botched surgery. Here’s the dialog of two doctors talking:
Dr. Melik: (listing items Miles had requested for breakfast) “… wheat germ, organic honey, and… Tiger’s Milk.”
Dr. Aragon: “Oh, yes. Those are the charmed substances that some years ago were thought to contain life-preserving properties.”
Dr. Melik: “You mean there was no deep fat? No steak or cream pies or… hot fudge?”
Dr. Aragon: “Those were thought to be unhealthy… precisely the opposite of what we now know to be true.”
Dr. Melik: “Incredible!”
In 2007, our ‘charmed substances’ all seem to have removed any trace of fat – and nearly everyone I meet who is trying to lose weight is obsessed with these charmed substances. I see them check ingredient labels to look for as little fat as possible – I look for as much fat as possible. I go to the store and see ‘low fat’ on every other label, which to me screams ‘low-quality, over-processed, high-sugar’, and yet I see overweight people filling their carts with the stuff.
When I hear other people talking about how they were struggling to just maintain their weight and battle hunger on their low fat, portion-restricted diet and I mention that I drink cream and eat cheese yet lose weight, they look at me like: ‘you poor delusional bastard.’
I sometimes think they must be right – surely I can’t be right when all of these other people believe otherwise.
Then I look at the facts:
- I lost 60 lbs. following a strict low-calorie diet with intense exercise yet put it all back on with a little extra within a year because I couldn’t sustain it.
- A number of years later I lost 70 lbs. following a strict low-calorie diet with intense exercise yet put it all back on with a little extra within a year because I couldn’t sustain it.
- Four years ago I went on a low-carb diet and lost 80 lbs with no exercise and little hunger and have kept 70 of the 80 lbs off since reaching my target.
- I never lost a pound when attempting a low-fat diet.
Call me delusional, but I’m still a size 34 waist – down from 42.