JavaScript disabled. Please enable JavaScript to use My News, My Clippings, My Comments and user settings.

If you have trouble accessing our login form below, you can go to our login page.

If you have trouble accessing our login form below, you can go to our login page.

'The obese have a mental problem'

Date

Daisy Dumas

The Frenchman behind the popular Dukan diet says that the overweight have a "mental problem".

No stranger to controversy, Dr Pierre Dukan, author of <i>The Dukan Diet</i>, has labelled overweight people as having a "mental problem".

No stranger to controversy, Dr Pierre Dukan, author of The Dukan Diet, has labelled overweight people as having a "mental problem".

Would you take dieting advice from a man who has branded the obese as "mentally ill"?

If you have tried the smash-hit Dukan diet, you already have.

Dr Pierre Dukan, the millionaire author behind the best-selling nutrition books has said that the heavily overweight have "a mental problem".

He told the Mail on Sunday's You magazine: "I've never seen an obese person who has said, 'I am well in the mind.'"

The infamous doctor admits that he feels for the audience to which his books are targetted. "I suffer for them ... I like them because they are not really ill, like with the cancer, but feel they are outside of society.... I want to help."

He suggested that love may be the best dieting mechanism around (besides his plan, we presume): "Happiness stops food being a compensation. If you love a man, immediately you will reduce your intake of food – it’s automatic."

The Duchess of Cambridge's Berkshire-based mother, Carole Middleton, reportedly lost 34lbs using the controversial Dukan method, which sees a high-protein intake based around 100 permitted foods, with dieters instructed to phase the programme around four 'pillars'.

Launched in France in 2000, The Dukan Diet hit Australian bookshops in 2010 and has gone on to sell over 100,000 copies.

Similar to the equally contentious Atkins diet, as well as ketogenic and Weight Watchers diets, the programme has drawn wide-spread criticism, not least from French, British and American health bodies.

The diet was ranked 24th out of 25 in a best diets of 2012 list drawn up by US News and Health Report. Blasted for being too restrictive and rule-driven as well as bereft of medical evidence, one expert went as far as labelling the plan "idiotic".

But the diet author, who removed himself from the French medical register in May after being threatened for announcing that teenagers who maintain healthy weights should be given better school grades, remains unperturbed. "I am convinced deeply that for now, mine is the best [diet] on the market: it is the most healthy and the most ethical" he told You.

"My allowed foods are the foods of the old genes, the fruit of the hunter gatherer, the fish and vegetable."

As well as offending the overweight, Dukan did little for international relations. "We ’ave 22 million who are overweight and six and a half million obese, a little bit more man than woman. But yes, Frenchwomen resist better than Americans: when a Frenchwoman starts to put on pounds, she stops immediately. She has an allergy to weight'", he told Liz Jones in the interview.

Despite the criticism, Dukan's diet book topped the iTunes book chart until being knocked from the number one spot by the bizarre and faddish OMG diet, which condones missing breakfast and having a cold bath before a cup of coffee each morning.

107 comments

  • As Dr Rudy said, "Overweight? Just eat less." Can't do that? Maybe the French Dr has a point.

    Commenter
    Blame everyone else
    Date and time
    August 21, 2012, 1:12PM
    • I'm overweight and completely agree. Truth hurts. I'm working on my emotional (ok mental) state and have been for 12 months. Hey presto, the weight is dropping off.

      Commenter
      Pip
      Location
      melbourne
      Date and time
      August 21, 2012, 7:10PM
    • This guy has nailed it with simple but undeniable truth. Most people especially the obese are in a state of absolute denial.

      Dealing with this denial is the first vital step to losing weight.

      Commenter
      Plato
      Location
      West End
      Date and time
      August 22, 2012, 7:37AM
    • This guy has nailed it with simple but undeniable truth. Most people especially the obese are in a state of absolute denial.

      Dealing with this denial is the first vital step to losing weight.

      Commenter
      Plato
      Location
      West End
      Date and time
      August 22, 2012, 7:37AM
  • The best part is that this man has removed himself from the medical register.

    Commenter
    kosh
    Location
    Melbourne
    Date and time
    August 21, 2012, 1:13PM
    • Anyone who advocates eating 10 serves of meat per day and nothing else clearly has a mental problem.

      Commenter
      Frankieismyboy
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      August 21, 2012, 1:17PM
      • Really? Because that's the best thing I can think of doing. mmmmmmmm.....

        Commenter
        PB
        Location
        Sydney
        Date and time
        August 21, 2012, 8:32PM
    • http://theconversation.edu.au/mondays-medical-myth-cutting-carbs-is-the-best-way-to-lose-weight-8711

      Just another diet....ho hum.

      Listen to the people that are in the area of expertise, not to someone ("millionaire author") that stands to make millions from your failure to succeed with his book... once you've bought his book he for all intents and purposes has achieved HIS goal.

      Commenter
      Dr DUKAN is a CON ARTIST and CHARLETON
      Date and time
      August 21, 2012, 1:26PM
      • Is that Charleton in Devon?

        Commenter
        bleebs
        Location
        Melbourne
        Date and time
        August 21, 2012, 4:08PM
    • I would agree to the extent that 'emotional eating' is a common theme for many overweight or obese people.

      Commenter
      MG
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      August 21, 2012, 1:27PM

      More comments

      Comments are now closed
      Featured advertisers

      Horoscopes

      Capricorn horoscope

      Trust others to think for themselves. Don't be snobbish about what seems obvious. Everyone learns at their own pace, including you.

      ...find out more here