President Taft, America’s First Celebrity Weight Loss Patient

You may think that celebrity weight loss is a new thing, but it’s a long tradition with over 100 years of history. For comparison, that’s about as long as brides have been wearing white in this country.

Discovering the Diet

President Taft didn’t publicize his diet. Like many modern celebrities, he tried to keep his new diet secret from the public. This was a lot easier then than now, as newspapermen and other journalists tended to respect the power of office more, although they were also interested in a scandal. Ultimately, it was probably limitations of technology that allowed Taft to keep his secret. It was easier to limit access of the press to people in his inner circle, so they didn’t spill the beans on his secret.

It was only recently that President Taft’s diet became known. A medical historian analyzed letters between Taft and his doctor, finding hints of the diet. The historian came across detailed food diaries that the president kept for his doctor, and looked at letters between the two men.

President Taft hired British dieting expert Nathaniel Yorke-Davies in 1905, four years before he was to become president in 1909. Dr. Yorke-Davies recommended something very similar to the Atkins diet, emphasizing lean meats and cutting sugars.

Yo-Yo Dieting

After the first year working with Yorke-Davies, Taft lost 59 pounds. However, he gained it back and more. It was only later after he left the presidency and served as a Supreme Court justice that he managed to keep his weight off, with the help of a different doctor and presumably a different diet, although those records have not come under the scrutiny of medical historians.

For people with serious weight problems, it’s important to have the help of a doctor to ensure you get the support necessary to lose weight and keep it off.

If you are having trouble with your weight, we can help. Please contact Med-Fit Medical Weight Loss Clinic in Denver today.

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Dr. Angela Tran