A Sure-fire diet


I posted a version of this article in the past but I am reminded about it not only because I practice it daily, and because the message is important, but also because I saw confirmation of it by a doctor on TV. The following is another version on what I wrote previously.

Most people think about the famed Maimonides (1138-1204) as a philosopher or as a writer of Jewish law, but he was also a highly respected physician, and wrote books on medicine. Among much else, he analyzed all of the medical teachings of Hippocrates (around 460 BCE – famous for the Hippocratic Oath) and Galen (around 200 CE), considered the foremost physicians for over a thousand years, and pointed out their many errors. His medical teachings are based on the knowledge of the human body during his lifetime, in the twelfth century, and many of his teachings are outdated, but many are not. His medical books, which have been translated into English, are available on amazon.

One of Maimonides medical teaching is never leave a meal with a feeling of being “full.” Always leave feeling slightly hungry. He explained that it takes the body about 20 minutes to digest the food and reach a point where the body registers that it is “full.” The doctor on TV, who did not credit Maimonides, said: “Did you ever have an occasion where in the middle of a meal you had to leave the table and take a telephone call, and then return to the table twenty minutes later and you feel full and do not have to continue eating what you planned to eat? This is because during the twenty minutes you were gone, your body registered that it is full.” By following Maimonides’ advice, people do not eat too much, and retain a sensible weight.

One way of doing this is exactly as Maimonides suggested: rise from the table feeling half full. Another way, I think, is to eat a fruit – an orange or apple. The fruit not the juice – twenty minutes before your meal.

I found that the same idea works with drinking. If you are invited out to a party, have a drink about twenty minutes before you leave your house. I found that when I do so, I can only have one drink at the party.