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Eating and being merry

india Updated: May 27, 2012 20:06 IST

From the constantly shifting ground that forms the bedrock of rules governing a diet, here’s the latest. Researchers at the University of Michigan’s School of Public Health have found that men who are forced to embark upon a healthy diet at the insistence of their spouse end up gaining weight. No, this is not because of an inherent deficiency in their wives’ understanding of what constitutes healthy or any flaw in the food itself. Rather it owes to their getting waylaid into a life of eat-and-don’t-tell, where the lure of the fries and steak puts paid to the gains made from the low-fat meals.

Of course, that is not to say that the pinnacle of good health would forever remain accessible to these men guilty of dietary waywardness. The study reveals that women who discuss and negotiate before embarking on a diet are expected to get better results, with less infidelity displayed by the men towards the roots, shoots and leaves. We, of course, could have proffered the same advice with much less hassle: negotiating one’s way around a sticking point is always a better idea than sounding a bugle and a call to arms, whether on the battlefield or the family dining table.

Many would heave a sigh of relief to know that diets are one of those areas where peaceful negotiations can still lead to desirable results. Whether such discussions will yield any result when it comes to competing demands made on television, or infidelity in matters much closer to heart, is open to further studies by future researchers in the field. Such developments would probably end up reducing the frequency of marital discords, and the consequent divorces and break-ups. The community of lawyers and psychiatrists is not likely to be delighted with such a scenario, but it will at least prove what the old wives’ been saying for a while: the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach.