The Corset Diet

BATD ON May 28, 2013 AT 11:11 am

by Chrissy Iley

The corset diet is a somewhat alarming new trend in LA. It’s a combination of a very old school diet where women in the 19th century trained their waists to lose inches by whalebone corsets that cinched them in so tight they found it difficult to eat, and the diet where you wear all over tight Lycra with fleeced padding and sweat.

The ancient corset diet came to be a fad a few years ago where modern day corset makers promised to reduce waist sizes by inches if you spent from 9am to 9pm trussed up so that you could never eat more than a soup or a 30 times chewed piece of lettuce. A kind of self-imposed non-surgical gastric band.

The new corset diet came into play after Jessica Alba announced that she’d worn a double girdle day and night for three months after the birth of her second daughter Haven in 2011. “It was sweaty but worth it.”

I met Alba when she was eight and a half months pregnant to discuss her eco-friendly baby range. She looked of course gorgeous but hugely pregnant. She definitely gained more than the recommended 30lbs. ‘It was brutal,’ she said. ‘It’s not for everyone.’

Jessica Alba, post-baby bikini body

What makes her two girdle diet different to the inevitably passive corset diet is that she exercised for 90 minutes four days a week wearing the ensemble.

Gruelling. But in Hollywood they are not afraid to work hard. They are not afraid of brutality.

The other day I went for a walk in one of the canyons. It was swelteringly hot and when I say walk I mean walk, not run, not hike. Not get to the top of the hill and do star jumps. And this is where I saw the craze in action.

Women wearing full body suits, the Lycra leggings backed in fleece, girdle top and jackets that look like wet suits, running up the hill. It’s like they were creating their own mini sauna. A hot yoga class that you can never leave.

And what’s alarming is that I actually know one of these legging wearers. ‘Jessica Alba really made an impression on a lot of people who want results and quickly,’ they told me.

So if you want to be so restricted you can’t eat but you can move and work out with great efficiency. If you like to sweat the kind of sweat that you’re almost swimming in, then the corset diet is for you.

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