Anorexics, rejoice: With asthma inhalers and vaporizers, inventor David Edwards turns physical food into a cloud, which dieters inhale to "sate chocolate or caffeine cravings" with no more than a single calorie. This is straight out of a futuristic farce.

Edwards' two inventions, Le Whif (!) and Le Whaf (!!), create edible clouds that exist at the nexus of molecular gastronomy and pro-ana fantasy. Here's how Le Whif works:

His first experiment with ­breathable food was with Le Whif, a lipstick tube-shaped contraption that works like an asthma pump. But instead of medication, it is filled with powdered chocolate, coffee or vitamins.

‘Whiffers' put their lips around the base of the tube and breathe in to fill their mouth with the powder. A single puff (one calorie) is supposed to sate chocolate or caffeine ­cravings—and it's doing surprisingly well. More than 200,000 Whifs sold last year, the majority in the UK (£4, House of Fraser).

Le Whaf is basically an elaborate humidifier, controlled by piezoelectric crystals that vibrate rapidly to turn liquids into gas:

If you want, say, tomato soup, you need to buy a specially-prepared ­liquidised version of the dish made by Edwards's team, which contains a secret mix of its ‘essences'.

To make the machine work, just press the ‘on' switch. Within a minute, a cloud of tiny droplets forms in the goldfish bowl.

The cloud can be ­dispensed from a nozzle on the side of Le Whaf. It then stays ­suspended inside the glass for a minute before it sinks.

This, Edwards says, is "good for dieters." Ten minutes of whiffing results in a caloric intake of a mere 200 calories! (Don't a lot of foods that take ten minutes to eat have only 200 calories? Like an apple. And you get the added bonus of chewing and swallowing.) No word on what strange effects this will have on your respiratory and, ahem, excretory systems. We'll assume the people in the video below who tried it out are still alive.

[Daily Mail, photo via David Edwards,]