#Delete Monday with Maintenance Phase

by Menaka Raman

When I was in my final year of college, I did the GM diet. Raise your hand if you’re old enough to remember the week-long plan that ordered me to eat only vegetables on Monday, fruits on Tuesday, only fruits and vegetables on Wednesday, bananas and milk on Thursday, and the GM soup (boiled cabbage in water) on Friday and a weekend bonanza of rice, vegetables, fruits, AND GM soup. Or something like that.

The first time I did the diet, I lost 5 kgs in a week. I was euphoric, despite the raging headache behind my left eye. Over the next year or so, I tried to go on the diet again, but I never quite experienced the success of that very first time. Probably because I would quit after the second day, enraged by the sight of a plate of raw beetroot and carrot for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

I wish I had the Maintenance Phase to listen to then, a podcast that ‘debunks the junk science behind health & wellness fads, and decode their cultural meaning’. It’s hosted by Michael Hobbes and Aubrey Gordon.

My favourite episode has to be ‘Master Cleanse’, where Hobbes and Gordon look at the origins of ‘the cleanse’ way back in the 40s, and their early celebrity adopters (hey Bey!) and influencers and the side-effects of some of these cleanses (cold sores anyone?) and I cringed inside when they took on the cayenne pepper, honey water cleanse, because of course, I’d tried that for one hot minute too.

Hobbes and Gordon have an excellent rapport and are super funny, but so thorough in their takedown, you don’t forget the serious underlying message of the episode: cleanses are b*s, are often the gateway to eating disorders and you shouldn’t be doing them. I was impressed and entertained by the ground they covered in the episode, and wasn’t bored or distracted for even one second.

I’ve never gone back to the GM diet, but I have returned to this excellent podcast time and again. So, put away that cayenne pepper, lime and molasses drink and detox yourself of wellness fads!

Listen to Maintenance Phase on Spotify here.

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