Robert Atkins has been dead for 16 years, but "Atkins" lives on. The eponymous diet has entered the vernacular: say "Atkins", and one immediately understands: high protein, low carbs!
It just rolls off your tongue, doesn't it? "The Atkins Diet." Good thing that the dearly departed doctor didn't inherit a more cumbersome Jewish name, like Rabinowitz, Schwartzberg, or Tuckerman. The Tuckerman Diet? That was never gonna fly in middle America.
Indeed, Dr. Atkins was Jewish, even if that last name doesn't obviously suggest so. On his father's side, Atkins ancestors were Latvian Jews. That's where the name comes from — Latvians like to tack an "s" to the end of names. On his mother's side, Atkins was a...