Wednesday, May 2, 2012

The French Paradox - why the French don't get fat and we do!

The French paradox is the observation that French people suffer a relatively low incidence of coronary heart disease, despite having a diet relatively rich in saturated fats. The term French paradox was coined by Serge Renaud, a scientist from Bordeaux University in France.

It is my pleasure to introduce Sally Asher as a guest blogger. Sally is a health scientist, weight loss coach and Francophile who been featured in several radio shows, blogs and magazines. She wrote "LOSING IT IN FRANCE: Les Secrets of the French Diet" to share her story and help others discover the secret to living the good life while losing weight naturally.  Sally resides is Melbourne, Australia with her husband and two children.

Part One
As a devoted Francophile, I’m delighted to share my expat tale of living the sweet life in Paris for four years.  I always had romantic visions of Paris, even from a young age, and when I finally landed in the city of light, it didn’t disappoint.

There is something magical about Paris that defies description.  Ambience, charm, chicness, history, colour, architecture, fashion - the list goes on.  Paris is a complete feast of beauty.  People fall in love with this city for their own personal reasons.

For me, it was love at first bite.  Nothing gets my heart racing like my love of French food.  What I found most enticing is the ability of the French to elevate food and wine to an art form – and pamper themselves by indulging selectively, yet still ensure they look spectacular in a Chanel suit.   The French seem to break every rule of modern diets and remain effortlessly slim.

For someone who had struggled with their weight and tried every diet known to mankind over several years, when I moved to Paris, I was determined to get to the bottom of what experts call the “French Paradox”.  Like the French, I wanted to be able to eat what I love without guilt and maintain a desirable weight minus the blood, sweat and tears.

While living with a French family in Paris, my dream came true and I finally changed my relationship with food.  Eat became about pleasure and satisfaction, rather than guilt and deprivation.

 When I fell in love with a Frenchman and we lived with his traditional French family for six months, I started to observe how thin French people eat every day and I imitated them.  I noticed that the French only eat when they’re hungry and stop when they’re satisfied.  They also eat mindfully and thoroughly taste their food, like a sommelier tastes fine wine. So I quit dieting and started to do the same.  I lost 25lbs over three months and have kept it off for over ten years now.

You can read about my story in more depth in my book “Losing It in France – Les Secrets of the French Diet”.  But now I’d like to tell you a bit about living and working in Paris.

Please come back tomorrow for the conclusion



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rather be in paris