Sandra Dick: ‘Tis not the season for dieters

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PASS a certain room at a certain time on a Saturday morning and the noises seeping out may suggest something quite naughty is going on.

Orgasmic moans, mischievous giggling. “Oh yes!” someone will cry. “Yes . . . God . . . YES!”

There are times during my Weight Watchers Saturday meeting that the lines between food and the other thing become rather blurred.

For example, someone will remark on a new low-fat chocolate dessert or creamy sauce they’ve found which will render our wholemeal pasta almost edible. We absorb this world-shattering news, wide eyed, salivating, moaning with joy.

The mention of forbidden food like a fish supper or lamb rogan josh and naan bread inspires several throaty “ooohs!” and “oh God, it’s been sooooo long . . .” There may be tears and a takeaway menu may have to be forcibly removed from a tightly clutched hand before it settles down.

I swear should the person who invented Warburton’s Thins stumble into the room, there would be pop star hysteria and offers of marriage.

That weirdo “pick up expert” Julien Blanc with his tips on how to make women beg for sex missed a trick: simply waving a Big Mac and fries in front of a Weight Watcher for long enough will be quite enough.

I mention this because ’tis the season for most us who have spent our lives dieting to want to retreat to the loft and not come back out again until the second week in January.

Surely by then the supermarkets will have cleared out the revolting chicken crouton lollipops, the Stilton with prunes will be rotting in landfill, and gone will be the Lindt reindeer (210 calories, which require around 5k of jogging to burn off, since you ask).

Dieters are the most screwed up folk you will ever meet. We can tell you instantly that three gins and diet mixer equal two glasses of red wine, that frozen mashed banana tastes like ice cream and the difference between putting on weight or not is just two chocolate digestive biscuits a day.

Yet still we battle the bulge every minute of our sad lives.

Yesterday Dr Sean Lucan of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York confused us further when he said counting calories could actually be making us fatter.

He argues potatoes, rice and pasta – what we’ve been told to eat for years – are the baddies. And nuts, olive oil and even, cue moans of desire from the Saturday class, cheese, are better than we thought.

The average person will gain around 6lbs this Christmas, most of which they’ll never lose. So you see, suddenly the loft for the next six weeks seems a very attractive place.