How I Lost 10 Pounds in Five Minutes (by Turfing My Collection of Diet Books)

East Coast Mum: I lost 10 pounds in 5 minutesThis New Year’s I decided to do something drastic: I lost 10 pounds in FIVE Minutes by throwing out my collection of diet books. Here’s a review describing the reasons I bought each book…and the reason why it’s being “kicked to the kerb”!

The Weight Watchers Points Journal

This is not my first copy of this small, coiled book, but it is my last. Back in the 1990’s I lost a significant amount of weight through the POINTS program (which was brand new then), but on reflection, I was quite fat (I had moved to the UK and discovered fry-ups and beer), and I WAS IN MY TWENTIES!  So, yeah- I religiously tallied my points and dropped about 2.5 stone (35 lbs) in 9 months and I looked totally hot at the end of it. But that was then, this is now. Sad truth: I now have grey hair, two kids and really saggy boobs on top of a minor weight problem, so it’s unlikely I  will ever be totally hot again, no matter how many points I count. Plus, Weight Watchers is a bit of a tight squeeze, budget-wise. It really has become pricey over the years, even if I do re-use this mostly empty journal. So… Goodbye Points Journal!

1. The South Beach Diet

When The South Beach Diet came out in 2003, it was an attractive alternative to the Atkins diet, which was re-popularised around the same time. While the Atkins diet seemed to allow any disgusting food combination as long as it had no carbs (I once saw a colleague dip strips of cooked bacon in a jar of mayonnaise for her lunch), the South Beach was  essentially, a low GI diet, wrapped up in a bit of sunshine. Plus Jennifer Aniston allegedly loved it. I nearly kept this book for the introduction, which is pretty inspiring and convincing, but you know what? I have better things to read. Farewell South Beach!

2. Joshi’s Holistic Detox

You will notice two books in the photo. That’s because I lost my first copy for a while, and really wanted to detox again. So this one’s a cheat: I’m actually keeping my dog-eared copy, and happily sharing the new one with whichever lucky toxin-filled person finds this gem in the charity shop. Why did I buy Joshi? My friend Wanda -detox queen- recommended it…and so did Gweneth Paltrow (her endorsement is on the cover). Anyway, let me tell you, I have done this detox THREE times in my life. On each occasion, I felt and looked AMAZING by day 21 (do NOT ask about days 2-5), and following two of my detoxes, I  immediately became pregnant, which was pretty miraculous. I’m keeping Joshi. He’s awesome.

3. The Ultimate PCOS Handbook

I found this online during one of my frequent google-adventures into the world of PCOS: Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome, an endocrine disorder which affects moods, fertility and weight.  I don’t know who this book is geared at, but I can tell you than anyone with PCOS has most definitely already googled the condition to death, and therefore already knows about 50 million times more information – and more recent information- than can be found in this book. Three words describe this book: No New Information. And another three: Do Not Bother. And one more: Goodbye!

4. The Hormone Diet

What’s that they say about making a mistake twice? I ordered The Hormone Diet off after listening to the author sell herself on CBC radio. All I can say is that she’s a far better talk radio guest than she is an author. This book was truly a bore to read, and just like the PCOS Handbook, offered very little new information. The author, a registered N.D. (Naturopathic Doctor) really smelled of that “I’m nearly a doctor, so I must be an author” thing. Remember Gillian McKeith, the “Poo Doctor”? .  Yes, I know. You’d rather not. Anyway, Hormone Diet, I’m all for supporting Canadian authors, but only when they write good books. Sorry, but See Ya later!

5. Wheat Belly

I bought this because a girl at work, Miranda lost a truckload of weight one year by following this diet to a tee.  The first part of the book holds a  pretty remarkable rationale, although some parts rely on the fear-factor and make me want to retreat to a bunker – or maybe a time machine, back to the century when wheat was wheat. I nearly kept the book for the recipe for Three Cheese Eggplant Bake on page 256. But you know what? I found a similar recipe online, and…ugh,  it is rather a lot of cheese. The main reason I want to get rid of this book is because it says “Wheat Belly”on the spine.  I don’t really want my kids to grow up seeing this on my bookshelf. In fact, I don’t want my six year old to know about “self help” or “diet books” books at all right now. One complex-ridden female in the house is enough, so….Ciao Wheat Belly!

6. Diabetes Solution

I bought this book after seeing a friend Hannah at a party. She had lost loads of weight through reading it, and looked about 10 years younger than the last time I had seen her. Well, she’s a better woman than I am. This paperweight has sat on my shelf for a few years now, taking up space, and despite its excellence, the book really is for full-blown or getting-there diabetics, and talks a lot about checking sugars and insulin and stuff. So the main reason I’m getting rid of this one: it’s big and heavy, and depressing too. Probably terrible Feng Shui to hang on to a book like this. It’s like a wish. Good bye, Diabetes Solution!

I estimate that the weight of all these books is about 10 pounds… or maybe slightly less, but who’s counting? Now that I’m 10 pounds lighter, I challenge all of you to lose weight just the way I did!  Go ahead: throw away (or donate to charity) your stupidest self-help books, and tell me about it in the comments. I can’t wait to hear about your “weight loss” success!

Love, East Coast Mum x

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