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Lemon Cheescake Recipe to Die For

According to my husband, this lemon cheesecake could kill him because he has yet to ever reach a physical limit for how much of it he can eat at any given time.  This recipe calls for all the things we love to eat, but that are really bad for us, like lots of fat and carbs together in a perfect storm of sinful wonderfulness. 

Check out the full recipe here:

Lemon Cheescake Recipe to Die For

According to my husband, this lemon cheesecake could kill him because he has yet to ever reach a physical limit for how much of it he can eat at any given time.  This recipe calls for all the things we love to eat, but that are really bad for us, like lots of fat and carbs together in a perfect storm of sinful wonderfulness. 

Check out the full recipe here:

Peanut Butter Treats Recipe

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Here is a recipe for peanut butter treats I grew up calling “peanut butter chews.”  They are made in much the same way as Rice Krispies treats except that you use Frosted Flakes instead of Rice Krispies and of course, there is peanut butter! 


The Line in the Sand

So, here we sit in the aftermath of our annual festival of gluttony, dreading getting on that bathroom scale.  That’s okay.  Never weigh yourself over the Thanksgiving weekend.  If you did commit an atrocity against your diet, there’s every possibility that you woke up the next day feeling bloated and awful to the point where you ate sparingly, if at all.  You probably also spent Thanksgiving sitting for long periods at the table, and later on the couch for conversation or football, so you woke up the next day with your body screaming at you to get out and move it.  Bodies are smart.  If only we listened to them more.

I was talking last night to a friend who has struggled with his weight over the past few years, but now has it under control.  We were discussing where our “line in the sand” is, namely, the weight that tells us it is time to stop eating and get our sorry butt some exercise until the scale shows us a lower number.  He said he weighs himself every day, sometimes more than once per day, to make sure he doesn’t cross the line.  I wished him a pleasant journey on his one-way trip to Neurosis City.

The Line You Won’t Cross

I absolutely believe we should all have a line in the sand.  For me, it’s my post-baby weight, which is the most I’ve ever weighed without having another person inside me.  When the number on the scale gets too close to the LITS number, it’s salads, cottage cheese, and daily exercise until that number drops by five pounds, then light-normal eating, yogurt for dessert, and every-other-day exercise until it drops by another five pounds.  If it went on fast, it will probably come off fast, because your body hasn’t yet had a chance to deposit those extra calories in long-term fat storage, so if you limit your intake and increase your energy requirements, your body should happily burn off that stuffing and pie.  The longer you put it off, the longer it will take to lose, because once you’ve added fat cells, your body really doesn’t want to let go without extraordinary efforts. 

 It’s (she says again) like your credit card debt.  Pay it off before the end of the month, and it’s a free one-payday advance; wait until January, and there’s interest added.  If you wait until after the holidays and make getting the weight off your New Year’s resolution, it could take twice as long as it would have if you’d just eaten sparingly during the week for the first couple weeks of December (you can wait until the leftovers are gone, but then, it’s time for the austerity plan).  And unless you live in a ski resort town (or Australia), January is already going to be miserable enough without having to live on lettuce and rice cakes while frowning at the bad weather.

What I don’t advise is weighing yourself daily.  We have eating patterns, and they pretty much follow our normal weekly schedule.  I know that I am more likely to go out with friends or make special meals for my family on the weekend, then eat lightly during the week.  So I weigh myself on Friday morning.  I doubtless took in extra calories over the past weekend, but fewer during the past week, so by Friday I’ve compensated for the previous weekend’s overages.  If you have to take clients to lunch during the week, but you go hiking on the weekends, you’ll have the opposite schedule; weigh yourself Monday morning, and you’ll know if the extra calories you burned over the weekend made up for the two-martini lunches the previous week.

If you weighed yourself every waking hour of every day for a week, you’d be astounded at how much your weight fluctuates based on when you go to the bathroom, how hydrated you are, whether you’ve been active or sedentary, and a host of other factors.  And that’s not even talking about the joy and wonder of what time of the month it is.  So I may step on the scale just because it’s there during the week, but the only number I pay attention to is the Friday morning number (but not this week!).  I know my weight can vary by several pounds and still not mean a thing, so panicking over “where did those two pounds come from?” is pointless.

Middle Management

I also have another LITS number– my waist measurement.  The negative impact on your health of carrying weight around your middle is pretty well established, so once a month, I check the tale of the tape.  The scientific data shows the general LITS number for women as 35 inches, but when mine hits 34, I know I’ve been sitting too long and it’s time to shake my booty along with everything else.  If you’re currently on a weight-loss program, you should absolutely be tracking your waist measurement as well as your weight, because often when you hit a weight plateau, your body is still making positive changes.  My husband has been working to get some weight off and reduce his “love handles,” and every time he starts to get discouraged because he hasn’t lost any weight for a couple of weeks, we’ll measure his waist and it will be another inch down.  He’s only lost about ten pounds since August, but he’s taken over four inches off his waist (and his blood test numbers have improved significantly).

Knowledge is power.  But it has to be meaningful knowledge, otherwise it’s just noise.  If you try to react to every little weight shift, you’ll make yourself crazy and accomplish nothing.  On the other hand, if you don’t establish some benchmark of where you should be (or where you want to be), you’ll go too long before you notice that your clothes don’t fit, and your road back (or forward) will be harder than it needs to be.  Pick up a good digital scale (so you can’t pretend to misread the dial) and a tape measure.  If you’re trying to lose rather than maintain, jot your numbers down on a calendar so you can track your progress.  Otherwise, know your LITS numbers and check in on them regularly, on a schedule that reflects your normal routine.  And act when the numbers tell you to act, not at some promised future date, or you’ll find that the line in the sand is so far down the beach behind you that you can’t even see it anymore.

You Can Stand Anything For Four Days

How to lose 10 pounds in a week – Back in the late 70s, a diet made the rounds of offices, college campuses, and other gathering spots of the weight-obsessed female, called “The Four-Day Diet” or “Lose Ten Pounds in Four Days.”  It was presented as a “fit into that dress by Friday” solution for women who couldn’t afford to hit the spa for a chemical or seaweed wrap to suck the water (temporarily!) out of your fat cells.  Unlike the spa treatment, though, the diet has an impact on your insides, and if you are healthy enough (no glycemic or kidney problems, for sure) to tolerate a VERY restrictive diet for four days, it can teach you some important lessons.

Be prepared, because it will not be the most pleasant four days of your life, but it’s nowhere near as horrific as some of those hot-sauce-and-worcestershire “juice fasts,” and much more balanced nutritionally.  But it is dairy-free, gluten-free, and high-acid, so be sure none of those are no-nos according to your doctor.  There is also grapefruit, which interacts badly with a number of prescriptions meds, so check on potential interactions before you start.  You can drink as much water as you like on this diet, and more is certainly healthier as the high-acid tends to have diuretic effects, but if you want to see if you can lose the whole ten pounds, remember part (though not all) of that total is water.  You are allowed to season with black pepper and a reasonable amount of salt, but the more salt you use, the more your body will want to hold onto water.

Day One:

Breakfast is half a grapefruit and coffee or tea.  Your beverage can be caffeinated or not as you choose, but NO whitener (dairy or non-dairy) and NO sweetener (sugar or artificial).  I’m one of those odd people who actually likes grapefruit, but I like it a lot better with a tablespoon of brown sugar on top.  Not allowed.

Lunch is roughly four ounces of broiled or grilled (with no added fat) lean beef (that can be anything from lean steak to extra-lean ground beef) and a salad of one cup lettuce (romaine is good) and one small tomato.  No dressing.  Okay, if you can’t stand it with no dressing you may have a squeeze of lemon or lime juice or a spritz of a zero-carb, zero-calorie vinegar, but no carbs and no oil.

Dinner is two eggs, one cup of green beans, and half a grapefruit.  The original diet called for hard-boiled eggs, but I find hard boiled eggs revolting.  There should be no reason why you can’t cook them any way you want as long as you add no fat, so scrambled in a good non-stick pan works for me.

Day Two:

Same breakfast (all four days!), half a grapefruit and coffee or tea.  Lunch is one lamb chop, a cup of lettuce with no dressing (see dressing cheats above), and 6 ounces of tomato juice.  If you don’t like lamb, I don’t see why you couldn’t have another four-ounce lean beef serving, or even pork, but avoid chicken or turkey– there are compounds in poultry that will mess with the chemical balance.  You get chicken tomorrow.

Dinner is veg, veg, veg.  One cup of raw or steamed squash, one cup of raw or steamed cauliflower, and one cup of raw or steamed green beans.  This was, for me, the low point, both culinarily and psychologically.  But it’s also the halfway point in the diet, so you can think of yourself waking up in the home stretch.

Day Three:

Your mileage may vary, but I woke up on Day Three feeling like someone had plugged my recharger in overnight.  Anyone who knows me will tell you that I hate mornings and consider getting up in single digits a form of torture, but I jumped out of bed on Day Three bright (for once) and early, and attacked my day feeling like the Energizer bunny.

After your now-typical breakfast, lunch is one cup of lettuce and one cup of celery (no dressing) with 4-5 ounces of broiled skinless chicken breast.  It is not your imagination if you think your chicken tastes sweet.

Dinner is your broiled 4-ounce lean beef serving, one cup of stewed tomatoes, and 6 ounces of prune juice.  I’m not a prune juice fan, but as little sugar as you’ve had in the past few days, it will taste like dessert.

Day Four:

Last day!  Same breakfast; lunch is two eggs, one cup of green beans, and 6 ounces of tomato juice.

Dinner is a repeat of Day One’s lunch (4 ounces of broiled lean beef, one cup of lettuce, and one small tomato), plus 6 ounces of unsweetened pineapple juice, which you will be convinced is the single best thing you have ever tasted in your life.  And you will go to bed dreaming of all the fabulous things you can eat… tomorrow.

What This Diet Will Teach You

The first lesson is one you’ll learn on the first day, because you’ll probably be hungry.  This diet is a not unreasonable amount of food, and more than many people get on a regular basis, but it’s likely nowhere near the volume of food you’re putting in your body every day.  So lesson one is “Rethink portions and snacks.”  Your stomach is much smaller than you think it is.

Lesson two you’ll learn around Day Three, “Your diet is slowing you down.”  The total lack of refined sugars and starches forces your body to readjust its energy processes, and most people find they suddenly have a lot more get-up-and-go.  It’s honestly an amazing feeling.  If you also find that your tummy is happier than usual, you may want to talk to your doctor about your gluten tolerance; tell him you went gluten-free for four days and felt great.

Lesson three will hit you on Day Five, when you try to go back to your normal diet.  Just about everything will taste like sugar.  You’ll taste the lactose in milk.  You may find your old salad dressing will taste so sweet that it’s downright unpalatable.  Ketchup will taste like you’re putting pancake syrup on your food.  “You have totally undermined your sense of taste regarding sweetness.”  For better or worse, this lesson won’t stick for long.  A few meals and snacks with very sweet things will have your tongue back to craving pure sugar again in no time.  But it helps to remember how that prune juice and pineapple juice tasted after being off refined sugar for a couple days.  A friend of mine was on a macrobiotic regimen to help with her Crohn’s disease, and she was forbidden refined sugar; she used unsweetened apple juice concentrate as a sweetener.  I think of her every time I see sweetened apple sauce or juice, because I can hear her saying, “It amazes me that people think they have to add sugar to something I use AS sugar.”

This is a good diet to try with a friend.  For one thing, misery loves company.  For another, you can share groceries, because if you don’t normally buy prune juice, you can’t just buy 6 ounces.  But mostly it helps to compare notes.  You may not notice something about your changed body or palate until your friend mentions it. 

I learned something very sad.  I’m weak.  I’m a slave to my taste buds.  I felt SO GOOD off dairy and with no refined sugar or starch in my system.  Better than I can remember feeling in my life.  And I gave it all up for a croissant.  Cheesecake.  A warm chocolate chip cookie and a glass of cold milk.  Maybe you’ll be stronger than me, and the knowledge you gain will change your life.  If you’re morbidly obese, and dairy, sugar, and starch are your trigger foods, it just might save your life if you let it.  Or you’ll learn that you’re weak like me.  Hopefully that’s a lesson in humility, at least.  And maybe having proved to yourself how much better you feel without eating certain foods will make you a little more circumspect about eating them at all, let alone to excess.

Spend More to Spend Less

Impulse buying

As the Krispy Kreme donut is to your diet, so the merchandise liquidator is to your budget.  These are stores that, rather than carrying a well-researched line of merchandise you’ll want and use, carry whatever they can get cheaply and unload to you quickly at a low price.  From the low-end Dollar Store, Dollar General, Poundland, etc. to warehouse wonderlands like Dirt Cheap, Treasure Hunt, Big Lots, etc., merchandise liquidators are out to make you an offer you can’t refuse.  And if things go well (for them), they’ll end up with your money and you’ll end up with a bunch of stuff, some of which you might actually want, and some of which will make you scratch your head and wonder what you were thinking.

I’ll tell you what you were thinking– you weren’t.  The industry relies on it.  Check out this website for a company that sells to liquidator chains.  Note the sentence, “Studies have demonstrated that items that have a retail of $20.00 or lower and that are considered functional, decorative or gift related, often appeal to Impulse Buyers.”  They have done extensive market research and concluded, rightly in many cases, that as long as it’s under $20 they can sell you almost anything that isn’t outright garbage.  If it’s more than $20, your brain will kick in and think, do I really want this?  Under $20, the “ooh, shiny” hits your animal brain and you rush like a magpie to take your treasure home.  Unfortunately, it doesn’t take many under-$20 bargains to run into serious money.

Portion Control For Impulse Buying

Now, just like I freely admit that I occasionally patronize my local Krispy Kreme, I also admit that I have spent many happy hours in Dirt Cheap stores.  I have some killer deals to show for it.  But I go in recognizing it for the potential mine field it is, armed with some questions:

“IS this a bargain?  Would I cheerfully pay twice as much for this?”
“Do I know right now where this is going (e.g., Mary will love this as her birthday gift, These shoes will be so cute with my little black dress, This is exactly what I’ve been looking for as a bedspread for the guest room, etc.)?”
“Will I be kicking myself tomorrow when I come back for this and it’s gone?”

If you can answer “yes” to all questions, it’s unlikely to be a purchase you’ll regret.  You should also go in with a hard budget, because five $10 deals still add up to $50.  Figure out ahead of time how much you can afford to spend, and prioritize your “deals” accordingly.

Between sales, discount chains like Walmart, and merchandise liquidators, we’ve become alarmingly unaware of what the stuff we buy is worth.  That allows liquidators to mix some low-end merchandise in with the bargains and maximize their profits.  Everything might be $10, but some of that $10 merchandise is worth $50, some of it is worth $10, and some is worth $5.  And unless you learn to look past the price to the actual worth, you may walk out of the uber-discount place having spent a fortune and saved precisely nothing.

Quality Before Price

My mother always said, “Buy the best quality you can afford, and then take good care of it.”  If you want a fun tee to wear to hand out Halloween candy (and possibly never again), by all means, buy it for $9.99 at Walmart.   If it’s going to be a staple of your wardrobe, you might want to learn what high-quality cotton feels like and what high-quality stitching looks like (go into a high-end store and handle the goods, even if you don’t intend to buy anything).  Otherwise, you’ll say bad words every time you wash the T-shirt, go to fold it, and realize that the seams no longer line up because the cheap fabric was stretched during manufacture.  Eventually, you’ll just throw it out and replace it, and if you don’t replace it with something of higher quality, you’ll start the cycle again.  Spend a little more for something that is worth a little more, and you’ll have a garment you’ll enjoy for years.  Concentrate on wardrobe basics that won’t go out of style quickly–solid tees, tailored shirts, silk blouses, basic jeans, slacks, blazers, coats.  If it’s this season’s must-have novelty item (and you must have it), get it as cheaply as you can, because the odds that you’ll be wearing it beyond a few months are low.

The same thing is true for your home items.  I still have the Sunbeam mixer my mother bought in the 50s, so when I bought my first mixer, I bought a Sunbeam.  After not one but two Sunbeams had burned out motors on me (I use my mixer a lot), I was forced to conclude that “they weren’t makin’ ‘em like they used to” and I bit the bullet and bought a KitchenAid, which has given me hundreds of hours of trouble-free service.  It cost three times what the Sunbeam cost, but by now I figure I’d be on my eighth or ninth Sunbeam, so I’m actually still ahead with the higher-quality purchase.

By all means, try to make your best deal on the items you truly want and need.  If you’re flexible about, say, color, you can go to your local car dealership and ask to see what the dealers are driving; buy a dealer model and even if he’s only driven it off the lot once, they have to sell it as dealer-used.  Dealer’s cars are usually fully-loaded, and normally still under full “new” factory warranty, but thousands of dollars cheaper than the cars that haven’t left the lot.  It’s a good way to get more car for less money.  Don’t ever spend more than you have to, but never be afraid to spend a little more to get a lot more quality.  No matter how cheap “cheap” is, three times “cheap” is usually still more than one times “nice,” and not nearly as satisfying.

Open Your Mind to Open Face

Open faced sandwich – Depending on whether you believe the flattering biography of John Montagu, Fourth Earl of Sandwich, or the unflattering one, the first meat-between-two-bread-slices handy meal was served to the Earl either at his desk (because he was so devoted to his many public offices) or at the card table (because he was a compulsive gambler).  Whichever one it was, it’s a good bet that he was paying little or no attention to what he was eating, merely that he was eating.  No wonder he achieved such an impressive girth later in life.

Sandwiches have become a way of life for most of us, because they are convenient and reasonably tasty, but the whole idea of having a meal in one hand while your other hand is typing, or on the wheel of your car, or holding a telephone, is disastrous to your diet.  In the first place, you’re probably not paying enough attention to it to be enjoying it, even if it is a good sandwich (so why are you eating it?).  In the second place, the guts of the sandwich, which is presumably the feature flavor and chief nutritive element, is likely being smothered under all that bread.

Lower Calories, Lower Carbs

Consider the open-face sandwich.  It’s really just a meal-sized canapé, a cracker-with-cheese supersized.  But you don’t normally feel the need to slap another cracker on top of your cheese or other canapé topping (and it wouldn’t be nearly as pretty), yet we compulsively put a second slice of bread on top of our carefully prepared sandwich filling, usually for no other reason than that we can eat it faster without getting our hands ooky.  With one swift movement, we have increased the calories and glycemic index of our meal while making it possible to consume it so quickly that we don’t realize what we’re doing.  Bad idea.

One of my favorite guilty food pleasures is the Jack-in-the-Box Supreme Croissant.  It’s a fat pill.  I know it.  That’s why I don’t have one often, but sometimes I just need that fried breakfast goodness.  I got one the other day, and for a wonder, I actually took my own advice– I took the first bite, and really considered what I found so delicious.  And suddenly, I realized that there was too much bread.  I was getting a tantalizing hint of the filling flavors, then they were mercilessly swallowed up by the starch.  So I took off the bottom of the croissant (the cheese is melted onto the top, but the egg is placed on the bottom with nothing in between, so it’s fairly mess-free to remove), and took another bite.  Heaven.  There was the smooth egg, the crispy bacon, smoky ham, and just enough cheesy croissant to be a complement without overpowering.  So there was 80 or so calories that I didn’t need to eat, and I actually enjoyed what was left more.

Unrolling the Wrap

In recent years, the “wrap” has become a popular alternative to the bread sandwich.  Unfortunately, the calorie count of the average tortilla equals or exceeds the average bun (there’s a lot less air, but the same amount of flour).  You’re better off with one slice of bread or half a bun than you are with a tortilla.  And honestly, it’s no tougher to eat an open-faced sandwich than a slice of pizza, and most people manage that just fine (I do not come from a part of the country where they fold their pizza).  Of course, it does mean that you can’t pile your sandwich innards sky-high like Dagwood Bumstead, but that’s also a benefit to your waistline.  If you wouldn’t put an inch-thick stack of cold cuts into your mouth by itself, why does it become okay to do it between two slices of bread?  Go back to canapé thinking, and don’t put so much stuff on your bread that it’s in danger of collapse.

I’ll make an exception for subs if you eat them like I do, namely, like it’s a salad that happens to be lying on some cold cuts and a roll.  But for all other sandwiches, give them a try open-face.  You may find that you can eliminate some non-value-added calories from your plate, and enjoy what’s left more.  Yes, it will probably take a little longer, and yes, you’ll probably have to wash your hands.  But this is supposed to be a meal we’re talking about, and any time you consume a meal’s worth of calories, it deserves a little more ceremony than being crammed in your face at a stoplight.


Saving money advice – I have a good friend with whom I used to go to lunch often.  We both worked in Downtown Highrise Hell, and when one of us was having a bad day, we’d call the other one and give the code word that meant, “Horrible morning– must have alcohol, gripe time, and retail therapy.”  We eventually decided that though the alcohol and gripe time was sometimes a necessity (as a socially acceptable alternative to homicide), we needed to either stop the shopping or start looking for divorce attorneys.

What was wrong with shopping together?  Almost everything.  First, we’d usually had cocktails, so our critical reasoning was a little less sharp than it might have been.  Second, we’d spent our lunch conversation being supportive of one another, as in,  “I don’t know how you put up with those people, you deserve to be treated so much better.”  Take a little righteous indignation and a sympathetic girlfriend shopping, and between the three of you, you’ll decide that you need, want, and above all, deserve that designer gown that costs an entire paycheck.

Enter QVC, the Home Shopping Network, and all those other channels whose sole goal in life is to separate you from as much of your money as possible.  You know it’s a bad idea, right?  Like eating a dozen Krispy Kreme donuts by yourself?  But you still can’t fight it?  There’s help.  Let’s look at some of the techniques they’re using to short-circuit your common sense, so maybe you’ll spot them in the future…


Notice how there’s rarely one person selling you someone?  Usually two?  This serves a couple of functions.  First, it puts you in a “just friends having a chat” mindset instead of one where you might actually evaluate their statements for content.  Second, and more importantly, it allows them to sneak in phrases like, “That’s right” and, “I know” until you begin to feel out-of-touch if you don’t agree with their opinions.  Sad as it sounds, no matter how ugly that piece of jewelry is, if they hammer at you for ten minutes gushing, “Isn’t it beautiful?”  “I know, have you ever seen anything like it?  I bet it’s going to be very popular!”  “That’s right, <number in the hundreds> people have already called in!” you are going to question your own taste before you question theirs.  It’s brainwashing.  It’s all the worst things about shopping with a friend without the one good thing, that your actual friend doesn’t get paid to make you spend money.


Depending on what’s being sold, they may interview “experts” to assure you that you are placing your health and your family’s at risk unless you buy <X> immediately.  Infomercials take this to the extreme by designing a set to look like a news program so you’ll unconsciously accept that the content is non-fiction.  Katie Couric wouldn’t lie.

Adrenaline rush

People who audition for shopping networks don’t have to know a thing about the product (in fact, it’s often better if they don’t, so they can be astonished by the presenter), but they must have one skill– the ability to NEVER stop talking.  Silence will literally never fall.  If it looks like the host is about to pass out from lack of oxygen, the presenter will jump in over the host’s patter with the next amazing feature of the product.  This creates a “runaway train” feel that has been successful for centuries in allowing auctioneers to get people to pay too much for an item.  You don’t want to fall off the train, and you don’t want to get […]

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I Do Eat Right, and You’re Not My Type

Do I really want to lose weight? – A friend recommended Peter D’Adamo’s Eat Right 4 Your Type, and having now looked into it, I’ve got to wonder if she’d had her coffee before she read it.  Because total lack of brain function is the only excuse I can see for regarding this book as anything but complete and total hooey.  Was that harsh?  Gosh, and my blood type is supposed to make me so empathetic.

My first reaction was to wonder how a physician could be this irresponsible, but D’Adamo, it turns out, is not a physician.  He’s a “Doctor of Naturopathy” which means he’s completed roughly the course work required of a Physician Assistant (and PAs very carefully do NOT let themselves be called “doctor”), plus those important extra courses like herbal remedies, sorry, botanical medicine.  (Sorry to those of you who love your herbal supplements, but any plants that contain medicinal compounds with real efficacy are too dangerous not to be processed and measured to such an extant that you might as well have taken the pill in the first place.)

What I honestly expected to find in this book was something akin to that one-size-fits-all personality profile from the psychology experiment.  You know, where everybody gets the same profile, saying things like, “You enjoy being around people, but sometimes would rather be by yourself,” and “You don’t think you’ve really achieved your full potential,” that are true of most people.  Then the participants are asked to rate the accuracy of their profile, and of course most rate it as very accurate, proving either that people are very much alike, they are very gullible, or there is too much money available to fund psychology experiments (and perhaps all three).  I expected to find very similar suggestions for all types.  If that were the case, this book would be much less dangerous.

Unfortunately, D’Adamo bases his entire premise on incorrect information, namely, that type O is the oldest blood type.  He relied on research done in the 1950s and did not take into account current (and this is current as of 1990; D’Adamo published in 1996) conclusions that A is the oldest blood type, followed by B, then O.  D’Adamo basically characterizes type O as a […]

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Naked Appreciation

Do I really want to lose weight? – I can remember, many years ago when it was age-appropriate, reading an article in Seventeen Magazine.  It was memorable, I suppose, because it was the first time I recall feeling a sense of outrage at the less-than-subtle suggestion that I wasn’t good enough because I didn’t look like the model on the magazine cover.  I had been through a doughy phase at around 13-14, but I was back to a normal weight by 16.  But still, I was a 16-year-old girl.

The article directed, “Stand in front of a full-length mirror naked.  Frankly assess any less-than-perfect parts.”  Excuse me?  Did you just, actually, advise an entire class of the most obsessed-and-critical-of-their-bodies humans (teenage girls) to scrutinize every inch of those bodies, and judge them against a standard of perfection?  Is this the article that launched a thousand eating disorders?

With a few well-meaning hiccups like the “Dove Campaign for Real Beauty” and Tyra Banks’ complaint that even her thighs had been airbrushed smaller for an ad, the media has been presenting us with unrealistic “standard” images for decades.  It is incredibly ironic that the web address has been abandoned by the Dove folks and purchased by, you guessed it, a weight loss program.  Sigh.

I’m not the first to point out that equating skinny with beautiful is a 20th-century concept. […]

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