While some pay for life coaches and personal trainers to shed unwelcome kilos, the Germans have figured out a way to make a detox program that resembles a wild spring break. The secret lies in few calories - accompanied by a few beverages.
The setting is Oberstaufen, a bucolic fantasy resort town in the Allgäu region of Bavaria, where cows dot the hillsides, flowers burst from every windowsill and pavements look clean enough to sleep on.
Almost every day, locals put on a concert or dance performance, where red-cheeked children and their parents, all in dirndls and lederhosen, entertain visitors with some foot-slapping, old world Bavaria charm. It harks back to a time when people were healthy, fit, hard-working and spiritually content.
Yet under this glossy veneer of traditional Bavaria lies the genius of a wellness empire that keeps its dieters happy with free glasses of Schnapps and one-litre bottles of wine to go with a dinner of about 200 calories.
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