Recycled Guru?! Marilyn Diamond

I'm kinda surprised the community didn't go a bit a buzz when Anthony Colpo included this in a recent reader mail roundup:  

Reader Glen sent along a link to comments made on FaceBook by Marilyn Diamond.  Who you ask?  Well as AC reminds us:

... she co-authored a runaway best-selling diet book in 1985 with her then husband Harvey titled Fit For Life. It was enthusiastically endorsed by folks like Merv Griffin and Tony Robbins so, hey, it had to be scientifically sound. The diet was reportedly “based on Harvey Diamond’s exploration of Herbert M. Shelton theories of food combining. Both authors claimed to be able to bring about weight loss without the need to count calories or undertake anything more than a reasonable exercise program. In the first version of the program, Diamond claimed that if one eats the foods in the wrong combination they “cause fermentation” in the stomach. This in turns gives rise to the destruction of valuable enzymes & nutrients. Diamond categorized foods into two groups : “dead foods” that “clog” the body, and “living foods” that “cleanse” it.”
I remember this book but can't say I read or ever followed its advice.  Good thing I suppose?  In comments at that FB page Diamond writes:
I lived for the better part of 20 years on a plant protein and fat diet, and I almost died. Somebody has to speak out and I'm nominating myself. See below...for the beginning...
She sounds like she's gone low carb lacto paleo!
I had lunch in an outdoor cafe today. A delicious raspberry iced tea with a salad topped with sliced roast chicken, bacon, blue cheese and slices of hard boiled egg. I didn't eat the homemade bread on the plate. Tonight I had a grilled grass fed beef burger platter with a beet, basil, Persian cucumber and Campari tomato salad dressed in a creamy olive oil, lime and yogurt sauce.
Fitonics was a difficult book for me to write. I was shrinking from the backlash I sensed, and it was so strong from the vegan community, I retired from public life with Rock and taught the Power of Love Seminars for nearly ten years.  [1998 book pictured at right] 
I needed this time because I was in the throes of going up and back and mostly back to raw and vegan. And, unbeknownst to me, I was in serious muscle wasting. In one year, in 2004 to 2005, I became unable to pick up my toddler grandson. I had a heart condition that caused anxiety attacks, because my heart muscle too was wasting. There is a lot of condemnation energy out there, and I think we ought to allow those who don't fare well and were pioneers and longer on these diets than most people, to speak out and warn others that it may not be sustainable on the biochemical level of the bodies requirements to ignore essential food groups interminably. I learned, and I'm strong enough now to speak my truth. But, I think sometimes my tone is too pushy, so I'll take the reactions to heart and try to be more empathetic with those who are not ready or may never be ready to do what I have had to do to survive. Luckily, I'm now stronger than ever. And I have the ability to enjoy my life free of the depression caused by nearly 25 years in a nutrient deficient diet. It wasn't even okay when I was young, but I just believed that what I was feeling was "life." ....

Of course most will read that bolded comment and presume it's only those adhering to diets like vegan diets that are possibly doing harm in the long term....

... Acute, accelerated muscle wasting, thinned out my heart muscle, which caused debilitating anxiety, often thought I was having a heart attack...overall weakness, loss of the muscle covering my voice box, depression, low thyroid, loss of sex drive, the inability to cope. I didn't see that I had much future, and I'm just scratching the surface here.

Sounds like a woman on a mission!  And then you click on her name and get to the main FB page.  I must say she's looking pretty fab.  Her blurb says:
The co-author of the famous FIT FOR LIFE is back after 27 years of research to find out what can make us sexier, healthier & younger! The secrets lie in a breakthrough art of nutrition & exercise. Coming up: a new and a much-needed revolution!
Sigh.  So, let's see, in 1985 she co-authored a pseudoscientific meme that she followed for like 20 years and claims it caused muscle wasting including her heart.  I presume those 20 years are part of the 27 years of research she draws on in her new book?  It will be called, Young for Life.  Now, one would think that if one almost died from the pseudoscientific mumbojumbo in Fit for Life, they might not want to play off that fame, right?  Regrets?  Seems those are left at the publisher's door because she's got another "for life" book in the works with her new husband, Rock.   I suppose we should be amazed at her remarkable 7 year comeback that has rejuvenated her, right?   Let's get real here folks!  But at least she looks the part to sell a book like Young for Life which is more than I can say for many advocates of eating a particular way.  

Gotta love it though!  Easy, check!  Effortless, check!   Yes, you too can look like this when pushing 70 ......

I'll spare you the exhibitionist pics, you can go look for those yourselves if you want to see Rockie and Marilyn in their undies. 

Anyway, I guess there are many outside this community peddling BS too.  Is that comforting? 


bentleyj74 said…
It's sad really that she exchanged one form of slavery for another and still calls it freedom with all the same self delusion. :(
Mir Writes said…
I just threw out my late MIL's hardcover of FIT FOR LIFE while attempting a back-room declutter this summer. She followed that in the 80s. I wasn't interested back then, but I do remember there was food combining.

I think this more of "Money for Life" than anything else. Color me really cynical...
Unknown said…
I think I actually read her book in the '80's.

When I write mine I'm going to be honest and title it "I Really Don't Give A Damn About My Health I Just Want To Be A Good-Looking Old Person"
Anonymous said…
Someone named Diamond finds someone named 'Rock' - what are the chances!
Unknown said…
We all need to take a chill pill

"Are you eating enough omega 3 fatty acids? Making sure to sprout and ferment all your grains? You only use sea salt right? Grassfed or grainfed? Do you know the antioxidant score of your chocolate? Surely you’re making an effort to get more fat soluble vitamins. Have you tried supplementing with glutathione? One tablespoon of cod liver oil per day or two? Virgin or expeller pressed coconut oil? Hope you’re not using a centrifugal juicer – kills the enzymes you know. Are you avoiding sugar, starch, or both? Certainly you’re not daring to consume a dairy product that has been, dare I say, HEATED!!!"
Unknown said…
Wow--who wrote this crap whose favorite line is "pseudoscientific mumbojumbo"? Have YOU written a book that has been read by upwards of 20 million people? Have you written a book that has been in constant, uninterrupted publication for 28 years? Have you written a book that held the prestigious #1 position on the N.Y. Times Bestseller list for an unprecedented 40 straight weeks? Have nearly a million people from around the world written you letters of praise and gratitude? Do you really think all of that happens around "pseudoscientific mumbojumbo"? What exactly have you done in the battle for humanity except sit on the sidelines and ridicule those who are actually helping people live healthier lives? Instead of tearing down your neighbor's house why don't you build your own? Loser!
bentleyj74 said…
Lol....Matt Stone as voice of reason. You gotta be pretty far down the road for that to be anything but hilarious.
CarbSane said…
Feel better? LOL

What I try to do in this battle for humanity is to explain the science behind the various claims, and also to expose some of the hypocrisy of many gurus. If one is promoting a particular diet, shouldn't it at least be working for them? Yet I point this out and you get mad at me?

Diamond says she almost died following her own advice in Fit For Life for 20 years. It is truly sad that book has sold so many copies and speaks to the gullibility of the general public. If she's serious about speaking out, shouldn't that start with disavowing that book rather than trading on the fame it brought her.

She doesn't owe any of her current looks to those 20 of the 27 years of "research"?

Pseudoscientific mumbojumbo is what it is. Book sales and YouTube hits (Lustig) don't speak to accuracy.
CarbSane said…
LOL ... good catch!
CarbSane said…
Money for Life! Yep!! Is this Princess?
CarbSane said…
She's almost 70. Let's face it, to look like that at that age there's other interventions going on. At least she's left the lips alone -- that's what really gets the Suzanne Somers and Dolly Partons of the world looking freakish.
LeonRover said…
There can only be one worthwhile comment on this, sung in Marilyn's breathy tones:

"A kiss on the hand
may be quite continental, but Diamonds are a girl's best friend."

Lesley Scott said…
"prestigious" N.Y. Times Bestseller list...*snort*

Gladwell's "The Tipping Point" made this "prestigious" list with, wait for it, 4200 sold, while "Eat This, Not That" fared a tad better in its prestigiousness (probably because it's a diet book) with about 11,000 sold. Barely a handful when compared to the size of the reading public, which, thanks to Social Media has experienced an explosion as Clay Shirky has pointed out. This NYT list really isn't anything other than a barometer of pop culture which is why books with promises of Diet Nirvana always do well. PT Barnum would love the fact that Marilyn Diamond could now completely reverse her stance, call her "prestigious" first book crap & start peddling a new one in its place.
Lerner said…
Didn't anybody see Lustig on 60 Minutes last evening?
CarbSane said…
I don't watch that program ... would love a heads up of such appearances if possible! May have been a rerun though? This guy should really be embarrassed to be "on the record" with some of the stuff he's made up.
Lerner said…
Oh, you're right; it's a rerun. I don't watch 60 Minutes either, but I see now that they have summer reruns just like any other show.

Here it is from April:

Gupta is the correspondent/cheerleader.
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In the beginning she was calling it Sexy for Life.....they had to tone it down I think..... when she first came out with this concept everything on that Facebook page was about sex and getting it on,,,and how these foods would make you sexy. She never mentioned that Rock had/has diabetes....and that is a main emphasis in the book. I lost a lot of weight following Fit for Life several years ago and kept it off--but I never stayed on it religiously--and I ate meat and protein all along the way. This new book--I just don't know..... if you get deep into it, there is a lot of veggie encouragement. I think she has just reinvented her food combining in a new way to make money. Most of what she is saying was in Fitonics, but I think that book was a flop.
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Eugene Huang said…
In a nutshell what does her new way of eating say in contrary to her old eating habbits?
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