There are times in the evolution of a culture when a word or expression no longer defines something it once strongly represented. Gradually it slips from the people’s vocabulary to be replaced by a more relevant phenomenon that basically says the same thing. In this instance the word “diet,” as in “I am going on a diet,” has been replaced with “detox,” as in “I am detoxing my body.” Why the change and what does it really mean for you and the rest of the world?
As a young woman I experienced the dieting craze beginning in the 1960′s when returning home from boarding school, with a few extra pounds on my young derriere, was met with the disapproving eye of my mother. “What happened to you?” was all she needed to say to plunge me into a lifestyle of chronic dieting. At the time there was a huge surge of publicity for the “lose 10 pounds in 2 weeks” diet books and really not much has changed to this day.
What I hated most about dieting was the sudden plunge into a strict regimen of deprivation with nothing to eat except carrot sticks and cottage cheese. All I really wanted was to feel better in my body, about my body and about myself. And for those few magical days after losing those same reappearing 10 pounds I was one with the rest of dieting America. In those days I was escaping the effects of Wonder bread, refined sugar, Velveeta cheese and Cream of Campbell’s soups. Hell, what did I know or any of us know about how the new processed foods could affect our bodies and our health.