Book Review: Wellness, Not Weight
WELLNESS, NOT WEIGHT—HEALTH AT EVERY SIZE AND MOTIVATIONAL INTERVIEWING, an anthology edited by Ellen Glovsky, PhD, RD, LDN, is the rare book whose audience is both disregulated eaters and their treatment providers. I’m proud to have a chapter from my FOOD AND FEELINGS WORKBOOK included in it, and am glad to have this opportunity to tell you how comprehensive and useful this anthology is.
As Glovsky explains in the introduction, the book is divided into three parts. Part One includes an overview of its main concepts: the mindful, non-diet approach for resolving eating problems; the Health at Every Size (HAES) model for achieving wellness; and the use of Motivational Interviewing, a set of techniques that is relatively easy to learn and can speed recovery. Parts Two and Three go into more detail about each of these concepts and how to put them into practice. This book is so rich in ideas and practice strategies that it will benefit non-practitioners and practitioners alike.
Topics include an explanation of terms related to eating—intuitive, normal, mindful, attuned, conscious, and structured (I learned a great deal reading this section!);a brief history of the non-diet movement which took me back to long before I became a clinician when I was a world-class binge-eater myself; evidence illustrating why diets don’t work, including how they harm you both physically (for example, the dangers of weight cycling) and psychologically.
If you’re unfamiliar with the Health at Every Size model, there are several chapters which describe how focusing on weight loss can keep us unhealthy and how all of us can become healthier, no matter what we weigh. I encourage those of you who are still fixated on the scale to get on board with HAES. There’s a chapter on how diets can be destructive for athletes and one on teaching kids to focus on health not the scale. And there are more reminders of how our culture stigmatizes weight, why thin does not equal healthy, and how each of us can combat misinformation that has for too long passed for truth. If you don’t know what Motivational Interviewing is, this book explains how it benefits clients, specifically disregulated eaters. It provides clinical examples and therapist-client dialogues to show how Motivational Interviewing can non-threateningly help clients understand themselves and keep making progress.
You can learn more about WELLNESS, NOT WEIGHT, Ellen Glovsky and her DVDs and seminars at http://bit.ly/WellnessNotWeight.