Friday, October 24, 2014
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Nail polish helps 'Good Morning America' contributor Tory Johnson lose 60 pounds

Her new book, "The Shift," is a top seller at Amazon.com.

Tory Johnson, who shares small-business advice on ABC, says that changing her thinking was the key to changing her physical self.
Tory Johnson, who shares small-business advice on ABC, says that changing her thinking was the key to changing her physical self.

Talk about information at your fingertips.

“This should be called the Nail Polish Diet,” says Yahoo talk-show host Ali Wentworth, holding a copy of the The Shift: How I Finally Lost Weight and Discovered a Happier Life.

"Nail polish can indeed help you lose weight,” agrees Tory Johnson, a Good Morning America contributor whose book was the No. 5 best-seller on Amazon this morning.

Although Johnson, who doesn’t claim any medical or fitness expertise and downplays describing the “The Shift” as a diet book, it does chronicle how she managed to shed 62 pounds in a single year.

One night, she explained on Yahoo’s "Daily Shot," she saw a bottle of clear topcoat on her dresser and thought, why not put on some nail polish for a change? The result she called a “miracle.”

“I sat there patiently while it dried, because you can’t put wet nails in a bag of chips,” she said. “... In those five minutes, I realized I talked myself off the ledge.”

Her appetite was mani-cured.

“If I take a two-second pause, the craving passes,” she added. “For me the best pause came from nail polish.  But the pause could come from anything.”

This digital approach, though, only scratches the surface of the body of her advice.

The key was learning to knuckle down.

When “one of her big bosses” at ABC suggested in late 2011 she see a clothing stylist, she heard the real message loud and clear: “Lose your weight or lose your job,” she said.

So she resolved to shift her thinking, and make a major commitment, just as she did in becoming an entrepreneur after getting fired years before.

That means avoiding "junk" -- sweets and treats. In the Yahoo! interview, she compared a dieter rewarding herself with cake or cookies to an alcoholic celebrating a month of sobriety with a few beers.

So, clearly the nail polish advice glosses over the tough stuff.

In an ABCNews blog, besides a couple of delaying tactics and “no cheat days,” she listed four other guidelines: “Weigh yourself daily .... Read nutritional labels or check an app. ... Keep safe snacks on hand.  Sour pickles. Smoked salmon and cream cheese pinwheels. Celery and a tablespoon of peanut butter.  Hail Merry two-pack choco macaroons. ... Put old photos on display. ...  For me, there’s nothing like dozens of pictures of my (former) triple chin to stay the course.”

One critic of the book is Pilates trainer Linda Johnson, who complains on her website that “people with true expertise frequently get ignored in favor of the person with the bigger platform. ... The examples are numerous, overwhelming, and largely the by-product of marketing.” 

There’s also the caveat with any anecdotal yarn about weight loss: Losing a lot of weight is difficult, but keeping it off for years is the true test of any dieting plan.

Then again, a commenter offers this perspective at Amazon.com , “THIS IS NOT A TYPICAL DIET BOOK. It is FUNNY, SMART and surprisingly VULGAR. Who knew Tory had such a devilish sense of humor.”

For more information, go to Tory Johnson's website, "Shift With Tory."

Contact staff writer Peter Mucha at 215-854-4342 or pmucha@phillynews.com.

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