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How To Follow The Parisian Diet

Walking down the streets of Paris you may notice that most Parisians are quite skinny. Probably why many studies and books have worked on revealing a French person’s eating habits.

One can only wonder how a country like France, known to be a culinary leader and its people are proud of their passion about food, can have such low obesity rates.

The cliché symbols of France are the baguette, croissant and wine. Three extremely fattening delicacies when consumed haphazardly. But the learning lesson from the French is that the key behind eating all of the above and more (including the delicious foie gras and yummy macarons) is by balancing the diet.

Most nutritionists will advise their patients to avoid having deserts or to just have a few bites of a piece of cake. Yet when it comes to Parisians they usually won’t exclude the dish. If they have their eye on the lemon pie with meringue on top, they will get it! The trick however, is that they wouldn't have it everyday, but only when the moment calls for it. It could be during a formal afternoon lunch, a family dinner or on a weekend gathering with friends.

Another rule is that the French only eat when they are actually hungry. For instance, they will not order food if they don't feel the hunger strike. They wouldn't be pressured into consuming a hamburger when they don't have the appetite for it. Instead, they would choose a light salad or even restrain from eating. And here is why it's extremely important to not be pressured into social eating, or satisfying a “false” hunger sensation.

One particular important habit children are taught early on, is to have an afternoon snack (known as le goûter). It could be a piece of fruit, yogurt or a small chocolate bar. This decreases the size of the meal at lunch, as there will be no need to anticipate food storage till the late evening, and also makes you consume fewer calories during dinnertime.

Moreover on a regular day, a French person will always try to have a balanced and varied food intake, which includes fruits and vegetables, starches, meats and dairy products. Something that could be described as managing an invisible food diary!

So following a balanced lifestyle with a regular physical activity is the only way to go. For more information about following the French way of eating visit