By Steve Palec Special to OnMilwaukee Published Aug 23, 2019 at 4:01 PM Photography: Andy Tarnoff

I’ve had a lot of people ask me lately why I – a person who once ate the entire McDonald's menu – am not fat. So feel free to use these tips, tricks and philosophies that keep me healthy and skinny despite myself.

Calories are a myth. Don’t count them. I’m no expert, but you can’t tell me I’m better off eating 10,000 carrots versus only one McRib.

Always eat free food. If you eat the maximum amount of free food offered to you, then you will eat less food that requires payment. And since most food requires payment, you eat less. 

DO NOT avoid fast food. Now you may have to train your body over time to process it correctly – since it contains few nutrients your body will not recognize it as food – but once you get the hang of it, while you may feel bad, you won’t gain weight. 

Buns are bad for you and generally unnecessary. Whether used for burgers, hot dogs, subs or sandwiches, they are simply edible meat holders. You may discard them or bite around them, but either way, you’ll save valuable stomach space.

The single best way to stay slim is to worry. If you constantly worry about everything, I’ve found you burn so much energy that it offsets eating. 

Feel free to spill. I buy T-shirts in packages of six and use them as wearable napkins. Even when ultra careful, I get so happy, excited and distracted when eating that I inevitably spill. Spilling more equals eating less.

Try to remember to chew. I recently inadvertently swallowed an entire cream puff. Had I eaten it incrementally it would have taken a longer period of time and therefore I would've avoided the second cream puff I ate. But since the satisfactory TSE (time spent eating) equation was thrown off, I had to return for round two.

Drink bourbon. Sipping this magical elixir during meals not only replicates the savory flavor satisfaction of food but also allows you to focus on the entree and offsets the need to habitually consume unnecessary things that come on plates like green beans and broccoli. Unfortunately this doesn’t work well at breakfast. But all breakfast food is great so there’s nothing to avoid. 

Get married. Having a spouse (or two or three) constantly shaking their heads or raising their eyebrows will cause you to eat less AND force you to sneak in extra meals when they are not around. Plus, the exercise of moving from another location to eat offsets the food intake. Make no mistake: There are no easy fixes. You must exercise. 

Fruit is God’s candy. Think about it: Almost every candy (cherry, apple, orange, banana, etc.) tries to replicate the flavor of fruit. Eat lots of fruit and stick to treats that have flavors not found in nature – like Twinkies, tiramisu, etc.

As much as possible, eat in the car or watching TV. The energy you burn by moving the steering wheel, using the turn signal, using the TV remote, yelling at a fumble and/or squinting at a flickering picture in the middle of the night will ALL use energy that offsets the consumption. 

Let corporations control your portions. Whatever is put in front of you in a restaurant or in a bag from a grocery shelve is exactly what you should finish. This does not apply to items purchased at Costco.

Steve Palec Special to OnMilwaukee
Steve Palec, the host of WKLH's "Rock and Roll Roots" wrote a letter to every radio station in town when he was a sophomore in high school. He offered to sweep floors.

Two responses came back, including one janitor position. Steve took the other: the opportunity to hang out at WUWM.

After that, he worked at WAUK, then WQFM, then WZUU, then back to WQFM ... and finally worked afternoons at WKLH for a little while.

"I gave up Eddie Money to earn money in 1986," says Steve, who eventually entered the world of commercial real estate.

"But 23 years ago WKLH offered me the chance to wake up early every Sunday morning," he says. "I mean every Sunday morning. I mean like 5:30 am. I mean no matter what I did on Saturday night. Live every Sunday morning. I love it."