Tanya Zuckerbrot says LeFrak was following her high-fiber, high-protein plan for health reasons, but the diet’s weight loss benefits were what got the social set calling for appointments and high-fiber Scandinavian “GG” crackers
Paltrow’s lifestyle website, Goop, recommends instead a variation on Merla Zellerbach’s detox diet, which is heavy on herbal tea for breakfast and dinners of broccoli and arugula soup. What the diet lacks in appeal it makes up in comedy: The first of the scant comestibles permitted every day is a “glass of room temperature lemon water.”
In 2015, Argentine It girl Sofi?a Sanchez Barrenechea married the French fashion event producer Alexandre de Betak in a three-day international society destination wedding in Patagonia. “When I was planning our wedding, I was just eating cheesecake. And the more I ate cheesecake, the less hungry I got, because it would mess up my stomach,” she says. Her preferred brand was Junior’s, the iconic Brooklyn cheesecake bakery, delivered by Amazon Fresh.
“By the end of the month I realized I had barely eaten anything other than cheesecake, because it was literally messing up my stomach and I wasn’t very hungry,” Madame de Betak confesses. Then she crows triumphantly, “And pictures show that I was extremely thin for the wedding!”
Francine LeFrak, the New York real estate heiress turned Hollywood producer, almost accidentally launched the career of society’s current It dietician. Zuckerbrot repackaged the program as the F-Factor diet, attracting clients like candy entrepreneur Dylan Lauren, reality show–cialite Tinsley Mortimer, and MetBall planner turned Melania Trump adviser Stephanie Winston Wolkoff.
Zuckerbrot has seen some crazy, and dangerous, socialite diet fads over the years-including people using Xanax or best hookup apps muscle relaxants to sedate themselves at mealtimes. “They think that the more hours they’re sleeping, the fewer hours they’re making poor food choices,” she tells T&C. “The other thing that is gaining popularity in New York City is the use of Adderall. I’ve actually seen clients who have children with ADHD take their kids’ medication, because it really kills the appetite.”
Beware: A juice cleanse can crash your metabolism and lead to future weight gain
Rounding out her top three nutty diets is the baby food trend, in which adults eat only a few jars of the highly processed stuff each day, in a misguided attempt to cut calories. All these dietary shortcuts recall a cocktail that was popular at La Grenouille in the ’60s for its low caloric intake and protein firepower-the Bullshot, a combination of vodka and beef broth. Joan Crawford was a fan, but it’s a recipe that wouldn’t look out of place in today’s ketogenic diets. Only at least then you were getting a buzz.
The British establishment never forgave Wallis Simpson, who became the Duchess of Windsor, for luring the sovereign, Edward VIII, from his throne in 1936. They gossiped that she replaced her meals with scotch and soda to stay thin enough to fit into her wicked Paris fashions. It’s true that she preferred Elsa Schiaparelli’s sleek draping and the severely nipped waists of Christian Dior to the boxier designs of Coco Chanel.
No diet pills ever had the razzle-dazzle of StarCaps, which were launched in 1986 and were promoted on a billboard that stood above Sunset Boulevard for years. It prominently featured their creator, the indefatigable networker Nikki Haskell, holding up a bottle of the pills while wearing a series of designer party dresses. A former Beverly Hills High School head cheerleader who became one of the first female stockbrokers on Wall Street, Haskell maintains homes in both 90210 and 10021. Her bicoastal lifestyle allows her to count Donald and Ivana Trump, Clive Davis, Joan Collins, Beverly Johnson, and Barbara Davis among her closest friends.