There's a new diet fad that's not sweeping the nation. Who knows why it hasn't caught on yet, because it's so incredibly simple, even I can do it.
Here's the entire plan: Eat anything you want, just not too much.
That's right, you can eat cake -- a little piece of cake, not the whole thing. You can't ask for seconds. You can eat ice cream, but not all of it -- a little scoop, not the whole half-gallon. No matter how much you deserve it, no matter how lonely you are, no matter that she hasn't called you back even though she said she would. Is overeating going to make that phone ring? Move on. Let it go. There are more fish in the sea. It's her loss.
You can even eat gluten, unless you're allergic to it.
That's the great thing about the Glutton-Free Diet. Almost anything goes -- except eating too much. So go ahead, drink that soda. But only one. If you're still thirsty, have some water. You like french fries? Great, order some -- every other month. They should be a treat, not a constant side dish.
Who doesn't love bacon? Sure, eat some! Then stop.
If only dieting were that easy. How come we're not able to stop like we know we should? Some say we overeat because our caveman and cavewoman genes tell us to eat a lot whenever we can, because early humans had to deal with feast-and-famine conditions.
That theory sounds good, but skinny people have caveman roots, too. Didn't their caveman ancestors ever get hungry? Didn't their ancestors ever eat more mastodon than was good for them? Of course they did. But they didn't sit at their desks all day long and then sit on the sofa watching television the rest of the night. They actually hunted and gathered all day long. They burned most of their calories
looking for their next meal. Sure, it's hard to exercise, but think of it this way: There are a lot of single people working out at the health club right now. It's not exactly a singles bar, but a lot of them look like they could use some company. Go on, get out there: Let her be the one to be unhappy. Let her be the one to sit around and get adult-onset diabetes.
And by the way, those cave dwellers eating the real-life paleo diet didn't live very long. The lucky ones made it to 20. If they lived to be 40, the caveman version of Al Roker would wish them a happy birthday on the "Today" show.
It's hard to keep up with all the different ways people are eating these days. We stopped inviting people over for dinner because this one's a vegan, that one doesn't eat cheese, another one won't eat carbs and someone else wants to know if there are nuts in our peanut butter.
Our friend Marianne was visiting us from the city last week. We hadn't seen her in a few years and couldn't wait to catch up. Sue had made salmon and fresh asparagus for dinner.
"Oh, no thanks," said Marianne. "I'm cleansing."
"Isn't there a shower in your bathroom? Did we forget to put out the towels?"
"I'm cleansing the inside of my body. I'm getting rid of all the toxins."
"On second thought, don't use the towels," I said.
"Some days I only drink fruit juice, some days I fast -- it gets rid of all the bad stuff that's collected in my body over the months."
"And who told you to do this? Your doctor?"
"Ha!" she said. "Doctors. What do they know? No, I heard this from my neighbor, who watches lots and lots of TV and spends all day reading online. She knows everything."
"And how do you feel?"