A few years ago, I visited Dr. Sanford Siegal in the Miami-area kitchen where his bakers produce the cookies that made him famous. The white-haired doc told me all about his business-partnership-gone-wrong with Sasson Moulavi.
Long story short (here's the long version), Siegal had invented the 800-calorie-a-day diet in which a person eats his specially made low-calorie cookies throughout the day, plus one sensible meal.
Moulavi recognized the power of the idea and joined forces with Siegal
to open franchises and turn the cookie diet into a national phenomenon.
But when the two men eventually butted heads -- Siegal thought Moulavi
was trying to steal his secret recipe and spin off his own company;
Moulavi found the white-haired doc paranoid and set in his ways -- they split.
But both kept using the money-making "Cookie Diet" term. After a legal
battle over use of the term, Siegal was eventually recognized as the creator, and Moulavi
went on to found a similar diet-by-cookie program called Smart for Life. Siegal won the web domain cookiediet.com, but both men now use the words cookie diet in their marketing.
Now, a few years and many dollars later (even Siegal's son became a millionaire, apparently), after having turned Snooki on to the cookie diet and sued Kim Kardashian, here comes Dr. Siegal with a cookbook called The Cookie Doctor Cookbook: Countless Combinations of Delicious Meals for Any Calorie-Controlled Lifestyle. Available at Amazon.com,
it "enables anyone who follows almost any calorie-controlled
weight-loss or weight-maintenance diet to combine 120 recipes into a
nearly unlimited number of calorie-specific meals."
Siegal in a news release (a call to his publicist was not immediately
returned): "The Cookie Doctor Cookbook includes salads, appetizers, side
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dishes, entrées, and even desserts and is divided into 100, 200, 300,
400, and 500 calorie recipes. This enables the reader to combine two or
more dishes to create meals with a specific number of calories."
Fittingly, Smart for Life chose the same day to announce news of its new product, a gluten-free cookie diet.