Seth Roberts’ diet book, The Shangri-La Diet has just been published. Actually, the Shangri-La Diet isn’t really a diet, it’s a method of suppressing appetite. Roberts argues that the body follows a simple heuristic – when calories are tasty they must be plentiful so turn up the appetite and stock up when the fruit is on the tree. But if calories taste like cardboard then times must be bad (why else would you be eating cardboard?) so turn the appetite down and use up those fat stores. If you had to eat cardboard to lose weight the diet wouldn’t be very appealing but Roberts found that a few hundred calories of extra-light olive oil or sugar water are enough to turn the appetite weigh down (pun intended.)
The book is a quick read and in addition to the diet itself there are interesting asides about science, self-experimentation, the obesity epidemic and other topics.
Don’t take my word for it, however. The great thing about Roberts’ methods is that you will know whether they work within a day or two. Buy the book, try it out, you have a lot to lose!
Addendum: Long-time readers may recall that I wrote a brief profile of Berkeley psychologist Roberts and his novel self-experiments. That profile turned out to be one link in a chain that led to the present book (I am kindly mentioned in the acknowledgments.).