Slate’s fascinating two-part story “Eating for Fewer Than One” examines similarities between being anorexic and being part of the “calorie-restricted lifestyle.” Part one introduces the overall thesis: The similarities between the two conditions, according to writer Kate Taylor, are numerous. Both anorexics and those on a calorie-restricted diet have a slower metabolism. It’s just that for the former, that’s described as “bad” or a symptom, and for the latter, it’s a sign that the diet is working toward its eventual goal of prolonging life spans.
Part two revolves around a few somewhat-harrowing interviews with folks from the Calorie Restriction Society’s email list.
Taylor also brings her own perspective into the ongoing story. As a former anorexic, she’s particularly attuned to the emotional changes (some would say damage) that come from being consistently hungry. And these are changes she notes among those undergoing the CR lifestyle.
One quibble: When you emerge from a cult or a damaging addiction, you’re probably qualified to testify against it in public. But you might not be the best choice to write about it objectively and dispassionately—Taylor’s piece often reads more like an op-ed than reportage. But her background is front and center, and if readers want the pro-CR perspective on things, it’s definitely out there.