June 07, 1999 12:00 PM

What Every Skinny Woman Knows about Dieting (and Won’t Tell You!)

by Patricia Marx and Susan Sistrom

Grapefruit diet? Goodbye. Cabbage soup? Can it. The Zone? Get out! Here are the hottest secrets, tips and extreme measures—mostly tongue-in-cheek—from a pair of New York City freelance writers and their elitist girlfriends who regularly lunch bigtime yet still squeeze into a size 4. When bad foods happen to these good girls, they don’t weep after they hop on their scales. They tackle foods low in calories consumed per minute (artichokes, 2.3; unshelled lobster, 3.8). During weekends in the country, forget writing that novel (typing burns a mere 90 calories an hour) and chop some wood instead (1,050 calories). It’s okay to lick a postage stamp (one-tenth of a calorie) but if you’re stuffed up, skip the NyQuil (92 calories an ounce). And bear in mind that breaking up with a boyfriend usually means losing seven pounds (a custody battle, more than twice that). What do the authors advise if you still have cottage-cheese thighs? Keep your pants on. (Dell, $9.95)

Bottom Line: Sometimes witty (sometimes condescending) lowdown on staying slim

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