Michel Montignac, diet guru, and a pioneer of the use of the glycemic index as a way of losing weight died Sunday at age 66. Montignac became famous in the 80’s and 90’s for his advocacy of a rich French-style diet that included wine, cheeses, meats, and low-glycemic carbs such as vegetables and whole grains. Ridiculed by scientists and nutrition experts, much of what he proposed was later vindicated by research, especially with respect to people prone to metabolic syndrome and diabetes. No cause of death was announced.

His premature demise reminded me of the death of the great Adelle Davis, another pioneer in exposing the American food industry as a destructive force in the West’s health, and a staunch proponent of healthful eating that includes organic whole grains, fruit, vegetables, lean meats, etc. In fact, Adelle Davis has been widely hailed as one of the most significant figures of Science in the 20th Century. She also died prematurely at age 70 of bone cancer.

Both deaths bring to mind the question of just how dogmatic we should be about diet and nutrition. Of course, their deaths do not diminish the value of their teachings, but the irony is inescapable.

I am almost finished reading and in the process of applying the principles of Intuitive Eating, and I must say this is a far more rational, pleasant, and sustainable way of living. Authors Tribole and Resch expose one of the most important paradoxes in the effort to lose weight: The very act of focusing on losing weight makes you gain weight. A fascinating read and in my humble opinion, eminently practical.