Excerpt: 'The Diet Code' by Stephen Lanzalotta

The latest cutting-edge science and technology has proven just how deep this mathematical wisdom goes, documenting the Golden Ratio in everything from the pattern of galaxies and the shape of ocean waves to the spiral of seashells and the arrangement of petals in a rose. The same natural laws of design also dictate the form of human genetic material (the DNA double helix), the development of the human fetus and many details in the architecture of the human body. The Golden Ratio has been successfully applied by humans in so many arenas simply because they affirm the greater wisdom of nature when they do so.

This ancient formula has guided me in designing my own woodworking tools as well as whatever I create with those tools. The Golden Ratio gets credit for the impact of my abstract paintings, even fixating people who don't "like" modern art. As I later turned to bread making, what I'd learned about ideal proportions and numerical, geometric and mathematical relationships helped me perfect the breads I turn out daily at my bakery café.

And now, after decades of experimenting with applications like these, gradually extending the use of the Golden Ratio into new aspects of my life, it's finally impressed me most in the most mundane area: what I eat. I learned to use the same "magic" that perfected my tools and keeps my bread in such demand to balance my diet and fuel my body better than I'd ever done before. In tinkering with the Golden Ratio, I've discovered it describes the diet that is most closely aligned with the needs of the human body, providing foods and nutrients in the exact proportions that dictate the inherent design of the body. Once I'd figured out how to use the numbers this way, it seemed it should have been obvious: The food that's best for the body is the food that follows the same blueprint as does the human body. Of course the same formula that dictates how you are put together should also dictate how you feed yourself. And when it does, you are working in harmony with your body's systems, and the natural result is optimal health and ideal weight.

Beyond that, a diet laid out in the Golden Ratio meets -- in fact, exceeds -- all accepted nutritional standards. It also looks gorgeous on the plate, tastes amazing and satisfies completely. And it stabilized my weight right where it was while I was a high school football player, even as I hit my mid-40s! All that, plus I can fix dinner in less than half an hour. And my children will devour it.

Drawing on this same formula, "The Diet Code" is a complete, balanced, satisfying and sane way to eat. And the only thing it has you do without entirely is the denial and extremes of fad diets. It is the feeling of deprivation that makes fad diets -- even those on which many find short-term success -- unsustainable. "The Diet Code" is flexible enough to encompass what you like to eat. This plan can be followed by vegans, vegetarians or those who, like me, enjoy a good steak. If you like wine or beer with your dinner, that fits in, too. You can indulge your sweet tooth (I'll show you how) without fear of undermining your results. Yes, you can fly in the face of recent decades of dietary advice. Eat bread! Eat butter! With its unique, proportional harmony between food groups and practical advice distilled into plans for truly balanced meals that are as simple and quick to make as they are delicious, "The Diet Code" is perfect for a post-Atkins America.

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