(apologies: Link is in German. I’m hoping some enterprising reader will find its English equivalent and post it in the comments.)
Essentially, these researchers (2 journalists plus one professor) tried out whether they could pick a random, ludicrous eating plan, get it “scientifically backed” (their argument: Most “science” behind the diet plans is junk science anyway), get it widely published and see if it actually gets results. (Weight loss results.)
The answer: Clearly, yes!
The diet: Substitute your supper for one slab of chocolate, every night. (The argument of the professor of nutrition: chocolate is tasty, non-toxic and will not harm you. It is “arbitrary” as it is not necessarily more fattening than other foods that are included in diets – nuts, meat – and besides it has a feel-good factor.)
The study: Volunteers were divided into a number of groups 4-5 people each, and each given a different plan – some calorie controlled and some not – over a span of a number of weeks.
The results: were statistically “cooked”, according to the prof. He says this is dead easy to do (without falsifying any data at all), all diet studies do this!
The upshot: The “plan” and its “amazing results” were included in a respectable, peer-reviewed science magazine in USA. Peer-reviewed means that other scientists found the way the data were presented, acceptable. The “plan” found its way into popular magazines like “Brigitte” as a diet plan, and today – look it up yourself- the “Chocolate Diet” in its many variations is all over everywhere. There are tons of case studies of “amazing success”.
What does this show:
Dieting is arbitrary.
Enjoy your chocolate!