Alicia Silverstone, perhaps best known for her generation-defining turn in Clueless, continues to work steadily in film, television, and theater. She is the author of The Kind Mama. A dynamic fixture in the acting, political, and scientific communities, she is a dedicated advocate on behalf of the planet and its animals, and was voted "Sexiest Vegetarian Alive" in 2004. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband, Christopher, and their four rescued dogs.
Ironically, I was exploring another diet dimension myself at the time—raw foods. I was eating tons of fruit, nuts, and other cool, uncooked delicacies. Although I felt fine in sunny California, when I went to snowy, cold Manhattan to appear opposite Kathleen Turner and Jason Biggs in The Graduate on Broadway, it was another story. After a few days of work, my body felt cold and my energy was low, but I was determined to stick to my raw regimen. Between rehearsals, I would go out into the winter weather to hunt down wheatgrass juice, pineapples, and mangoes. I found them—it was New York, after all—but I wasn’t feeling all that good. My brain didn’t want to know, but my body was giving me signals that I was out of balance.
“Oolong, or ‘black dragon,’ is a kind of Chinese tea that’s packed with catechins, nutrients that help promote weight loss by boosting your body’s ability to metabolize fat. A study in the Chinese Journal of Integrative Medicine found that participants who regularly sipped oolong tea lost a pound a week, without doing anything else to change their diet or exercise habits.” — Kelly Choi, author of The 7-Day Flat-Belly Tea Cleanse
I believe that this cheat day is important for a number of reasons. Firstly, the science behind it suggests that if you go for too long on a limited-calorie diet (which this isn’t, however I noticed that it took me much, much less food to fill me up when I ate well, so you tend to naturally eat less on this diet) that your metabolism will shift to a lower gear in order to compromise for the lower intake of calories. By cheating one day and spiking the number of calories you consume, it will keep your metabolism from doing this – and allow you to maintain your high metabolic rate throughout the week.
When I got home, I declared to my boyfriend (now husband), Christopher, “I’m going vegan. Forever. You don’t have to,” and I blathered on about wanting to save the pigs and the cows, and the logistics of living with the newly vegan me. I was getting all worked up planning everything out, and he looked at me and said in the sweetest way, “Baby, I don’t want to hurt the pigs either!” Which confirms that I am the luckiest girl on Earth, because he was totally on board with me from day one.
Over the past few years it has become clear that weight is an important health issue. Some people who need to lose weight for their health don't recognize it, while others who don't need to lose weight want to get thinner for cosmetic reasons. We understand that in some ways your weight is different from, for example, your cholesterol level or your blood pressure, because you can't see what these are by looking at someone. Many patients have had health care providers who approached their weight in a less-than-sensitive or helpful manner. Some patients may have had health care encounters in which they felt blamed, but not helped. Successful weight management is a long-term challenge.