There’s a simple premise underlying the champagne diet: Eat healthy foods, and drink lots of champagne. Ha! Now that’s a diet plan I could really raise a glass to.
According to this silly article, the champagne diet, created by 31-year-old MTV writer Cara Alwill Leyba, is ‘taking New York by storm’ (somehow I have my doubts about that). Leyba, who calls the diet ‘two parts healthy living, one part fun,’ said following the diet has transformed her from someone constantly depressed about her weight to ‘a slimmer woman with more of a lust for life.’
Yes, I suppose a daily glass or two of bubbly could make life a little less bleak! But as for contributing to weight loss? Uh, probably not. The real credit for Leyba’s weight loss goes to her giving up strict or fad diet regimens like Atkins, Weight Watchers and the Dukan Diet and instead focusing on simply eating healthy—high-quality, nutrient-dense foods totaling around 1,200-1,400 calories a day. The champagne element—one to two glasses daily—just allowed Leyba to feel the diet plan was ‘less of a sacrifice.’
Still, if you’re going to be imbibing this holiday season, you could do worse than choosing champagne. Some research has shown champagne to have heart-healthy properties. And one 4 ounce glass contains just 78 calories—less than a light beer, and slightly less than a similar-sized glass of red wine. But remember: That’s for 4 ounces. Helping yourself to a more generous serving could quickly rachet up the calories.
Elisabeth Weichselbaum, a nutritionist with the British Nutrition Foundation, said a small glass or two of champagne a day does fall within healthy drinking guidelines. “But those are upper limits, and I wouldn’t recommend anyone increasing their alcohol intake as part of a diet,” she said.
Nonetheless, that hasn’t stopped Leyba from getting a book deal out of this whole champagne diet kookiness. Sigh … maybe she’s on to something. You guys wanna hear about this great, uh, Bloody Mary diet I’ve been planning? You just start with some veggies, grilled fish and vodka …
Photo: The Champagne Diet