Starbucks is known primarily for two things - supplying caffeine to the masses and being everywhere within a one-mile radius. But one Virginia woman is crediting the coffee chain with something else: helping her lose 85 pounds.
Christine Hall, 66 years old, says that she has lost weight by eating all of her food at Starbucks. She simply eats their prepackaged foods for all of her meals, saying that the caloric information on the packages help her count calories. Her day starts off with oatmeal and black coffee (145 calories). Lunch and dinner consists of either a bistro box, which contains cheeses, fruit, and bread, or a Panini, which can fall between 220 to 460 calories. "If I go on a bike ride," she says in an interview, "I can come back and have a brownie!" That means that her diet costs $16 a day, or $18.25 including the good-behavior brownie.
Dietician Rebecca Scritchfield says that, in the long-term, diets usually don't work. As consumers receive the results that they want, they stop paying as much attention to what they are eating, and pack on the pounds. Scritchfield also warned of malnutrition; she says that limiting culinary options to just one restaurant makes it difficult to receive all of the vitamins and nutrients that people need.
But Hall does not seem worried. She says that she used to attribute her aches and pains to aging. Now that she's embraced the Starbucks Diet, she does not feel any of them anymore. She says that she feels like a kid again.
Christine Hall is not the first dieter to embrace a single-restaurant method of losing weight. Most famously, Jared Fogle said that eating all of his meals at Subway allowed him to lose a staggering 245 pounds in a single year. Even though McDonald's came under fire after Morgan Spurlock's 2004 documentary Super Size Me, at least one person has reported a loss of 30 pounds in a month by only eating from their Healthy Choice menu.
McDonald's has recently announced that they are rolling out nutritional information nationwide to all of their menus.