How to Eat Like a Frenchman and Stay Lean

“God made only water, but man made wine.” – Victor Hugo (“La Fete Chez Therese,” Les Contemplations, 1856)

* forPierre’s breakfast, nothing but coffee
* for his lunch, a little salad and meat and a small glass of red wine

* for his dinner, meat, poultry, or fish covered in some rich sauce, fresh vegetables, potatoes or pasta, unbuttered bread, a glass of wine, and dessert

* absolutely nothing but water or coffee (and plenty of cigarettes) between meals

Pierre says the single glass of red wine twice a day is critical. And he may be right. A recent study by a team of Spanish researchers found that people who drink two glasses of wine a day are 50% less likely to exhibit cold symptoms than are nondrinkers. The study, reported earlier this year in the American Journal of Epidemiology, looked at 4,272 people, ages 21 to 69 years old, for a year.

The diet I follow to lose weight — the Carb Addicts diet — is remarkably similar to the way the Pierre eats.

Fish and above-ground veggies are best … then some meat and a little starch … wine twice a day (but only a glass each time) … and plenty of supplements. Refined carbs (starches) are clearly the worst. And though some people can apparently eat some of them, I can’t stay lean if I eat starch more than once a day.

Instead of a cup of coffee for breakfast, I have a single boiled egg. For lunch, I eat salad or veggies plus a small piece of fish or meat. For dinner, I consume as much as I want of anything, including wine and dessert, but it must all be eaten within a 60-minute period.

The Italians — also generally thin — eat in a very similar way.

If you’ve had trouble keeping thin, you might want to give this eating approach a try. And don’t forget the wine — and those supplements.

[Ed. Note.  Mark Morgan Ford was the creator of Early To Rise. In 2011, Mark retired from ETR and now writes the Palm Beach Letter. His advice, in our opinion, continues to get better and better with every essay, particularly in the controversial ones we have shared today. We encourage you to read everything you can that has been written by Mark.]