Judy Mazel of Beverly Hills Diet Fame, Is Dead at 63

Judy Mazel, 63, who is widely credited with starting the diet-book craze with her 1981 book The Beverly Hills Diet, died on October 12 at a hospital in Santa Monica, Calif. (She also wrote Slim & Fit Kids and The New Beverly Hills Diet.) The cause of death was reportedly “complications from peripheral vascular disease.”

Ms. Mazel’s suggested diet apparently circled around eating a lot of pineapple, a sweet concept that drew her share of bitter criticism from scientists and nutritionists.

From the Los Angeles Times:

The book made nutritionists’ lists of top 10 classic fad diets and drew heavy criticism from medical experts who protested a sequel even before it was published, The Times reported in 1982.

"Not only is there no scientific evidence to support this diet plan, but it also contradicts established medical knowledge about nutrition," a study in the Journal of the American Medical Assn. concluded in 1981.

Mazel said she did not create the book for the scientific community.