Lose Weight, Get Religion
Walking through our office, every table and counter is crowded with homemade holiday cookies. While writing this column today, I journaled my holiday treat caloric total. During the course of the day, I've consumed more than a thousand extra calories as I absentmindedly grab treats during the workday.
My own eating habits aside, seasonal online diet interest is one of the most fascinating areas of behavioral patterns. Search term data reveals that "diet" searches are highly repeatable events. Our diet searches peak on January 1 every single year. (The peak, by the way, typically lasts for four days. An indication of our dieting staying power.) With brief increases that coincide with swimsuit seasons, such as spring break and summer, our "diet" searches reach a low point every year on the highest caloric holiday: Thanksgiving Day.
Top 10 Diet Searches (four weeks ending December 12, 2009)
5.Gluten Free Diet
6.Cabbage Soup Diet
8.South Beach Diet
9.Acai Berry Diet
10.Biggest Loser Diet
Source: Experian Hitwise
I'll admit I was completely unaware of the Jesus Diet. Some quick research reveals that variations of this diet have been around for several decades, with the most recent version made popular by Dr. Don Gilbert's 2002 book, What Would Jesus Eat.
Other notable dieting trends for 2010, last year's top diet search " Acai Berry Diet " has fallen to the bottom of this year's list. "Atkins Diet" and "Cabbage Soup Diet" have also declined from last year’s list.
Going into 2010, diet searches are concentrating more on diets specific to medical conditions such as "diabetes diet," "gout diet" and "heart disease diet." These are gaining popularity as we search for ways to take control over our conditions.
As for myself, given this week's observations, I've developed my own holiday-specific diet: the No Holiday Cookie Diet, which I'm going to start right after this one last sugar cookie.
Bill Tancer is an Internet trend analyst, columnist and author of the New York Times best-seller Click—What Millions Do Online and Why It Matters .