Written by Sarah Morgan

Lifestyle

Fucking Ridiculous Diets I Have Been On

Throughout her life Sarah Morgan has tried various ways to shift weight she probably doesn’t really need to shift. Bloody Western culture conditioning.

Illustration by Laura Swaddle

Illustration by Laura Swaddle

Hi, my name’s Sarah, I’m a comedy writer, which you may not realise is an equal-opportunity job regardless of your “body type”. Most comedy writers are a classic pear, because of the sitting, but it’s a job you can do whether you’re totally spherical, consumptively scrawny, or just a brain in a jar typing with a mind-wand.

But I am also still a woman, and therefore – obviously – feel near-constant shame at how much unnecessary space my body takes up on this planet, stubbornly occupying where men might want to have opinions or build suspension bridges or start fight clubs.

At five feet ten inches tall (taller than Paul “Crocodile Dundee” Hogan), I sometimes feel there is just too much Sarah Morgan in the world, and I dream of being dainty and petite and wearing tiny Marc Jacobs dresses that you could fit in a Kinder egg capsule.

Alas, I remain stubbornly ‘fine’ sized. But I have the lengthy, slightly arrogant bone structure of a Russian race-horse, and no cancer or gangrene or anything so Jesus Christ that’s something to be grateful for, right? Fucking hell, there are women with cliterectomies and wooden arms and stuff, and here I am worrying about a bit of a bread-tummy. Bad feminist.

So, here are some diets I have attempted in my lifetime.

The 5:2 Risk level: tetchy

So how it works is you eat ‘normally’ for five days a week, then eat just 500 calories (about four bags of Quavers) on the other two. Miso soup, and watching Great British Bake Off while eating rice-cakes and crying feature heavily. One good thing about the 5:2 is you can use it like a loan consolidation company – on a ‘Two’ day, when you’re starving and miserable anyway, you can do all the shitty things you have to do that week, thus consolidating all your pain into two terrible, managable days. ‘Two’ days are really good for long phone calls to Haringey Council Tax payment hotline, and important arguments with your spouse. Also like a loan consolidation company, this diet is a prick

No Carbs After 5pm Risk Level: negligible

This is a really effective diet until 4.55pm when you decide it’s not really the right day for it because you’ve not really got the right food in and that bread’ll go off and you can just do it tomorrow, except tomorrow’s Alison’s birthday and it’s not like you can really do no carbs at Carluccios, can you, what, are you going to ask the waiter for a fucking boiled egg or something and just bum everyone out sipping water, Christ, do you just HATE other women? Just start the day after… It’s the circle of life, and the wheel of fortune.

Carbs: bloody lovely

Carbs: bloody lovely

Ecstasy and Golden Grahams Risk level: Super-high

As an capricious teen, I once got free entry to the Virgin “V” festival, Chelmsford, in exchange for handing out sample-size packets of Golden Grahams cereal to ravers in the Golden Graham’s Balearic and Happy Hardcore Dance Tent, while wearing a yellow Golden Grahams t-shirt and small polyester shorts. I slept on the Golden Grahams tour bus, and ate nothing but dry handfuls of Golden Grahams cereal and Speckled Mitsubishis for three straight days. I lost half a stone, all of my memories from before the age of 6, and my blue-tinted glasses in a Seahorses mosh-pit.

In the future, the V&A will have an exhibit called “1998”, and it will be just one tastefully lit plinth, with the above paragraph printed out onto a small white card. In the Curlz font.

Norovirus Risk Level: Messy

I’m really struggling now to remember times when I’ve genuinely not been able to eat. I can usually force something down, a cheese sandwich or a Lunchable or something. I’m brilliant like that, it’s a superpower. The one time I got the Norovirus, I pooed and vomited for five days solid, lying on the cool wooden floorboards because the bed ‘hurt’. I lost the TV remote so was forced to watch a 24-hour QI marathon on Dave, which means to this day I can’t hear the Caucasianly-frugalicious-gently-skanking theme tune without feeling bilious.

Anyway, I lost about a stone in poo and sick weight, which is the most stubborn weight to shift and also eww, it’s just occurred to me that we’ve all got loads of poo inside our bodies, right now! Poo and offal! No wonder women feel so disgusting all the time.

The Paleolithic diet Risk Level: Chance of rock-related wordplay

Admittedly I don’t really know anything about this except it’s also called the Caveman diet so I assume it’s where you go to a drive-in and get ribs so big they make your car fall over. Mmm, massive ribs.

@sarahlmorgan

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Written by Sarah Morgan

Sarah Morgan is a comedy writer for TV, radio and magazines. Surprisingly terrible at writing her own bios. Call your mother.