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Copyright 2002 Frank G. Van Atta. All rights reserved.

THE NUMBERS DIET

According to a poll conducted by the Concerned Americans for Diet Reality in the Environment (CADRE), the top five diets in this country last year were the Numbers Diet, the Polyunsaturated Peanut and Popcorn Diet, the Ice Cream Diet, the Wine Diet, and the ever popular Hamburger and French Fry Diet--in that order.

"Because we try to determine which diets people like the most, our poll has been attacked as a simple popularity contest," Ms. Elysia Goodbody, President of CADRE, said in an interview yesterday. "Well, nothing could be farther from the truth. Over the years, the most popular diets have also been the most effective diets, and the appearance of the Numbers Diet on this year's list goes a long way toward proving that."

For those of you unfamiliar with it, the Numbers Diet is based on the simple premise that some numbers are fattening and some aren't, and that you can lose weight by just avoiding the fattening numbers. And, if you believe CADRE'S poll results, it works.

According to Dan Fearfumpf, inventor of the Numbers Diet, the reason that there are so many overweight people is because 60% of all numbers are fattening. "Out of ten available digits, the only skinny numbers are '1', '4', and '7'," Fearfumpf says. "All the rest of the numbers are fattening--except '5', which is neutral. That's why 65% of the people in America are overweight." In order to get thin and stay that way, Fearfumpf says that you must eliminate as many fat numbers from your food as possible by using the Three C's of his system--Cost, Count, and Creativity.

Cost is the first thing you should consider when selecting food, as it is a very important part of the Numbers Diet. A price made up solely of fat numbers means that the food is fattening, so you want to stay away from items that have prices like 89 cents or 62 cents. You especially want to avoid any prices that contain a '0', as that is the most fattening number of all. Instead, you should look for thin prices like 47 cents, 17 cents, and $1.41. Prices which contain both fat and thin numbers--like 84 cents, 91 cents, etc.-- are neutral, and these items are especially desirable once you have reached your desired weight and are trying to maintain it.

Watch out for sales; they can be fattening. A TV dinner which regularly sells for $1.17 is an excellent buy because all the numbers are thin. But, if the same dinner goes on sale for 88c--a double fattening number--then you should avoid buying it.

Count is the second C in the Numbers Diet, and one that people all too often ignore, but the way foods are packaged is vital to your dieting success. Don't buy any food that comes in a 6-pack or a 29 ounce can, for example, because these are fat numbers. Buy the thinner 15 ounce can, and only buy foods packaged in thin numbers, like a bunch of 14 carrots or 7 turnips.

Food manufacturers routinely ignore good numbering techniques, as evidenced by their constant use of the 6-pack and the 22 ounce container. Creativity, the last C in the Numbers Diet, is necessary in order to overcome this built-in numbering bias. For example, if you buy two of each of the above, you end up with a neutral 12-pack and a thinning 44 ounces--quite an improvement over the original packaging. Veterans of the Numbers Diet will even buy eggs by the dozen to get a neutral value, and then throw one egg away to change the number to '11', the thinnest of numbers.



Copyright 2002 Frank G. Van Atta. All rights reserved.

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