Friday, October 12, 2018

Let Go of Emotional Overeating and Love your Food Review

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Several weeks ago, I was contacted by the publisher of Let Go of Emotional Overeating and Love Your Food: A Five-Point Plan for Success written by Arlene B. Englander, a psychotherapist, and asked if I was interested in reviewing the book. Emotional overeating is definitely something I am familiar with so I said yes. And I'm glad I did because the book provides lots of interesting insights and thoughts about emotional overeating as well as concrete strategies that can be used every day to overcome it..

Englander starts off by addressing the apparent contradiction of overcoming overeating and loving your food. She uses the analogy of an alcoholic and a wine connoisseur. It's the wine connoisseur who truly tastes and appreciates all the nuances of a good wine. And it's the same with food. If we overeat, it's about numbing feelings, not enjoying the food, which we must in order to overcome overeating for good.

To make the book relatable and interesting, Englander gives many examples from her own life as well as from her patients. She also provides the reader with several handy acronyms to help practice and remember the strategies she discusses in the book. For example, she gives the ABCD's of stress management:

A = awareness
B = taking a break
C = noticing the change
D = deciding what to do

She devotes an entire chapter to the importance of exercise and gives many suggestions readers can explore. In that chapter she stresses the point that one has to love what one does in order to continue to do it. I couldn't agree more!

She then goes into a very detailed description of how you should enjoy a meal. She gives another acronym to help readers remember the steps, RAFT:

R = relaxation
A = awareness
F = fullness
T = taking charge of the moment

She also has a chapter on the importance of staying adequately hydrated and enjoying healthy foods as well as the minefield evenings can provide when it comes to healthy eating. Again, she always gives concrete tips and examples that are easily followed.

She tells the reader to check in every day with the following question: "Am I doing what's best for my SELF?" SELF is another acronym:

S = Stress
E = Exercise
L = Loving your Food
F = Fluids

Englander also addresses enjoying food with family and friends, how to handle special occasions and gives final tips on how to follow her program for life. I like that Let Go of Emotional Overeating and Love Your Food helps readers examine their own relationship with food as well as eating patterns that often developed years if not decades ago. The acronyms and concrete examples help readers to make lasting changes in the way they enjoy food and live life.

Questions: Do you ever struggle with emotional overeating? What strategies do you use to deal with it? 

Be well,