“French Women Don’t Get Fat” by Mireille Guiliano
Mireille Guiliano has an envious position as CEO of Veuve Clicquot champagne which allows her to drink the bubbly every day, but also gives her a bird’s eye view on the culture of French dining and weight control. Just like the title, the book describes how French women avoid getting fat. Guiliano describes her personal experience with weight; she gained gobs of it as an exchange student in America then managed to lose it with the French methods she enumerates. She offers specifics about what exactly the French do to stay naturally thin. Having just gone to Paris for a short trip I could really see the magically thin, pretty women everywhere. Yet they seemed to eat pastries, cheese and drink wine constantly. She attributes this ability to the passion that the French feel for their food, a passion not shared by Americans. For instance, there’s a reference to bakers who would compete fierily in Paris just to make the best chocolate covered macaroon cookie! Beyond passion, there are some practical steps that she suggests to achieve a desirable French thinness. Stabilization is recommended for maintaining equilibrium and keeping slim while aging. Drinking more water is emphasized as an important key to keeping svelte and ample consumption is apparently learned at a very young age in France . Eating nutritious broth-type soups are part of the whole regime. Recasting is the term used for getting started in the “school of proportions” and using more food variety. She repeatedly focuses on “offenders,” those foods you are bound to overindulge on. She recommends not keeping “offenders” in the home. There are fabulous recipes in the book about how to bake French bread, make croissants and yes, prepare chocolate mousse! At any age, there is joy to be found in living more French, eating more French, and breathing more French! Check it out and see if you can make your life skinnier by taking breaths between bites, taking those stairs, along with going for that walk with your posture in check! This is more than some step by step diet book, it’s a charmingly written message to enjoy life and in the process keep slim on the journey.