2 Essential French Food Secrets That’ll Change The Way You Eat Forever
After recently spending a few weeks in the South of France surfing, eating ice cream, drinking wine and eating crepes at lunch like the rest of the country, I couldn’t help but notice that almost no one was overweight. In fact, according to worldobesity.org, France’s obesity rate for both men and women is less than half that of the U.S. population.
No one appeared to be obsessively working out (or even wearing workout clothes), eating kale and quinoa, or subsisting on green smoothies.
So, what was their secret?
Turns out, there are two.
They were walking everywhere, eating real food at every meal, living within their means (I saw few people use credit cards), spending time in the cafes with friends and extended family, drinking copious amounts of red wine… and eating ice cream. I have never seen so many ice cream cones consumed in my life. But there was a significant difference: They were small. I didn’t see any jumbo waffle cones dipped in chocolate, rolled in candy and topped with three softball-sized scoops of ice cream. For the most part, these treats consisted of a half cup of ice cream on a small cone. Here are my French-sourced secrets to staying fit and healthy (without taking the joy out of eating).
1. Size matters.
Everything (with the exception of taste) was small. I mean, a lunch portion was served on a plate the size of a saucer. This took some getting used to, since I’m a Texas girl used to eating a big plate of Mexican food, a basket of chips and salsa, and maybe a margarita in one sitting.
One afternoon before a big surf session, I ordered an entree and a salad. The lovely waitress said to me with questioning eyes? “Les deux?” (both of them?) like I was a giant Texas hog that didn’t understand French. I explained to her that I was paddling out and needed extra calories and she shrugged her shoulders with a bit of disdain and put my order in.
I had ordered some calamari. Again, a portion of a small saucer with a few veggies on the side and a little bowl with two tiny pieces of baguette in it. Just enough to soak up the leftover juice. No more.