An ELEMentary Diet

At least once a year a new diet book is introduced to rile me.  The latest is 232 pages from “The Doctors” television show.  I’ve no qualms with these books should they inspire anyone, except that, in this instance,  there are 231 pages too many.  Perhaps I should write my own book and title it “The E.L.E.M.entary Diet (Eat Less, Exercise More),” only it couldn’t, with a clear conscious, be stretched more than a few pages.

caloriesDespite overwhelming evidence that A Calorie is a Calorie, there must be public demand to obfuscate basic math:  add the total number of calories consumed, subtract the total number of calories expended, then if the remainder is less than zero there will be weight loss.  Others derive considerable pleasure and profit fiddling with this fundamental truth.  My favorite fuzzy logic is the Weight Watchers program, which assigns point values rather than use obvious calorie counts printed on food packaging.  This I liken to ignoring the decimal based metric system in favor of  the imperial method, with its arbitrary measurements dating back to the Roman empire.

Perhaps I could devote an entire page to fat, which has a bad rap and is necessary.  Unless gluttonously devouring family sized packages of Doritos it is difficult to exceed the 100% RDA when an overall calorie count is in check.  Similarly a balance of carbohydrates, sugars and other layers in the food pyramid fall in place.  Well, in my book will maybe devote just a paragraph to fat.

Then might elaborate for a page on basal metabolism, that if we just lay in bed all day would still burn well over a thousand calories.  Combine that with daily movement and even exercise and it isn’t difficult making the subtracted end of the equation greater than calories consumed.  Well, perhaps only a short paragraph about metabolism.

The U.S. Constitution and all its amendments, with the Deceleration of Independence thrown in for good measure, is less than 70 pages (pocket size).  We might have done even better to stick with Thomas Paine’s 46 pages of “Common Sense” pamphlet.  We certainly don’t need hundreds of pages detailing new ways to say “eat less and exercise more.”  Well, maybe the book should be reduced to a single, concise blog entry.

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About Richard Evans


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