Once the best-selling diet book.
The Scarsdale Diet was created by Doctor Herman Tarnower. Its first phase lasts only two weeks but claims to help dieters lose up to 20 pounds (9 kilograms) during this short period. Don’t even think of stretching this very low-calorie diet for more than two weeks. Follow this super strict initial phase by a more flexible maintenance phase that also lasts two weeks. The Scarsdale Diet popularity may have received an unexpected boost when the doctor was murdered, allegedly by his long-time partner in March, 1980. I don’t remember the details but I don’t think that she was all that unhappy with the diet. Here are some of the diet principles.
During the initial phase follow the menus exactly. If you’re hungry you are allowed to gnaw on celery sticks, carrots, or other veggies. Drink as much coffee, tea, or sugarless carbonated drinks as you like but don’t touch a drop of alcohol. Don’t eat fatty foods. Steam your vegetables. Don’t eat if you’re not hungry. Weigh yourself every morning. During the maintenance phase you are allowed a small glass of wine or a beer daily. There is a long list of forbidden foods.
The Scarsdale Diet foods look good.
Two advantages of this once extremely popular diet are its inflexibility (you won’t have to decide what to eat) and its brevity. The diet lacks sufficient fatty acids and calcium so don’t think of returning to the initial phase after completing the maintenance phase. It can be frustrating to follow because of its low level of calories and glucides.
Here are two sample menus:
Menu 1 (Initial Phase) Breakfast: Half a grapefruit. 1 slice of toasted protein bread. Coffee or tea. Lunch: Fruit salad. Coffee or tea. Supper: A generous serving of grilled hamburger. Lettuce, tomato, olive, celery, and cucumber salad. Coffee or tea.
Menu 2 (Maintenance Phase) Breakfast: Half a grapefruit. 2 slices of toasted protein bread. Coffee or tea. Lunch: Grated carrots. A chicken leg. Green beans. Supper: Green salad. Salmon filet. Ratatouille. Coffee or tea.
Some of the information in this article comes from a fascinating new book, La Bible des Régimes, written by Jenny de Jonquières and published by Amérik Media. Her book describes more than 80 diets and weight reduction programs. Each diet is presented with 5 menu plans, a detailed discussion of its advantages and disadvantages, and lots more. This information-packed book is presently available only in French. For more information consult the publisher’s website www.amerik-media.com.