Fad Banana Diet Finds Mass A Peel in Japan

Regimen claims to fuel weight loss with just banana, water for breakfast
By Wesley Oliver,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 17, 2008 5:30 PM CDT
A Japanese pharmacist designed the stress-free diet to help increase the metabolism of her husband, who had been rather overweight but eventually lost 37 pounds on the diet.   (Getty Images)
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(Newser) – A penchant for fad dieting is making Japanese consumers ripe for a new weight-loss scheme starring bananas, Time reports. Since a popular actress lost 26 pounds on the Morning Banana Diet, the fruit has been hard to come by. “There are no bananas on the shelves,” complained one consumer, “and it's been like that for a month.”

The diet, designed by a pharmacist to kickstart her overweight husband’s metabolism, only requires a banana and room-temperature water for breakfast, no desserts after meals and bed before midnight. A Japanese doctor dismissed the diet, but consumers haven’t noticed: Banana sales have surged 70-80% and grocers can’t keep up. “In a way this is an emergency,” said one importer.