Last Spring, I listened to Freakonomics on CD as I drove from Illinois to Arizona. In the appendix, the authors have a short article on Seth Roberts and his strange idea that drinking sugar water can lead to weight loss.
A month or two later, frustrated with my inability to lose weight on my own, I looked up Seth’s scientific paper online about what makes food fattening and tried his method. It worked! I started losing weight again.
After a few weeks of sipping sugar water and drinking olive oil, I spent a week in New York for the Del Close Marathon. I was explaining it to a friend and he responded, “Oh you mean the Shangri-la Diet.”
The next day I bought the book and found Seth’s website.
As the months went by and I lost more and more weight, my former prejudice against fats in the diet had been seriously challenged. I was losing weight not by restricting fats (like I had in my 20s), but by adding fats to my diet.
Then I read an interview of Gary Taubes on Seth’s blog. I started reading more about low carb diets.
Finally when I got my Kindle, I read Good Calories, Bad Calories by Taubes. After reading it, I switched to a low carb diet of mostly meat, cheese, eggs and green leafy vegetables, something I had already started to do gradually.
In a discussion on low carb diets on Seth’s website, I saw a reference to The Omnivore’s Dilemma, by Michale Pollan. I downloaded it to my Kindle. I haven’t finished it, but I’m sure it’s going to have a profound affect on how I eat in the future, along with Taubes book. (Pollan chides Taubes in his introduction without mentioning him by name over his 2002 article, “What If It’s All a Big Fat Lie?,” because of what is said about bread. However, their books could easily go hand and hand. For instance, high fructose corn syrup is one of the villains in both books.)
From there, I found eatwild.com, a website with a listing of grass fed beef farms across the United States. Next Saturday, I hope to visit a farm near Springfield. And in June, I’ll be heading to the local farmer’s market in Peoria.
I certainly would not have thought that a book on economics would have so radically changed my eating habits and be responsible for me losing over 50 lbs in little over a year, but in a way, it has. One thing leads to another to another to another.