Book Review: The Diet Fix

This review is long overdue. I actually was trying to get it done yesterday, but all the thinking I have to do when writing a review was hurting my head, so I switched over to the settee update (more fun, although messier) and figured I would talk about it today. Then I read a post by Debby referencing this very book!

Anyway – I found that amusing, which proves it doesn’t take much.  🙄 

Here is the book.

The Diet Fix: Why Diets Fail and How to Make Yours Work (amazon affiliate link)

I have followed Dr. Yoni Freedhoff’s blog, Weighty Matters, for quite a while.  I have even quoted it on the blog a few times because he just makes a lot of sense.  So, when he came out with a book, I was quite intrigued to read it. In fact, I actually bought a copy instead of waiting for it to come to my local library.

I have to say that he should have named the book differently. It makes it sound like it is a diet book in the traditional sense, which it is not. However, I suppose a book entitled “The every day things you can do to lose weight slowly and sensibly and live happily” wouldn’t really sell, right?

The Diet Fix has 3 parts to it. The first part talks about the issues with diets and why they fail. He often states the term traumatic dieter for people who have dieted on and off for most of their lives (which is a lot of us).  He points out many of the reasons people are unable to succeed with certain types of diets or mindsets about diets and how we tend to turn these things into self degradation.

The second part is implementing a 10 step reset plan to help you succeed. He says 10 steps in 10 days, but really some steps you can take a long time to get down. Not a lot of information is new information to serial dieters, but it is presented in a cohesive way with some additions that make sense.  Seems like I keep saying this makes sense, doesn’t it? Guess that is the theme here.  Things like a food diary (but without judgement), planning meals and snacks with protein to head hunger off before it comes on, how to handle social situations, exercise, etc.

The last section of the book goes into more detail about nutrition and how to to change your mindset about food and exercise (and other people who might sabatoge you), medical conditions and medications that can affect your weight, and a bonus section of recipes from Dr. Freedhoff’s wife.

My biggest personal takeaways from this book were:

1. Incorporate a morning snack. This is something that I always felt I shouldn’t need since I eat a bigger breakfast and should be able to last until lunch. Well, that isn’t always the case and I could be ravenous a couple hours after breakfast. Instead of fighting that, I have decided to make my breakfast just a bit smaller and have a timed mid morning snack (about 150 calories) that includes protein.

2. I think more than anything else this book is about behavior. Not really so much what you are eating, although that is important. It’s setting yourself up for success with a series of tools no matter what eating plan you want to follow.

3.  The biggest and most important thing? Your best weight may not be what everyone else tells you it should be. Your best weight is whatever weight you reach while you are living the healthiest life you can actually enjoy. Suffering should not ever be a part of a diet.

So in a nutshell, I did like this book. I think it has a lot to offer, really especially if you have been a lifelong dieter and have the suffering mentality and beating yourself up. 

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16 thoughts on “Book Review: The Diet Fix

  1. Lisa

    I will add this book to my list. I agree, the name of the book is a turn off — which is why I haven’t read it yet.

    I like #3. I agree with that message. It’s something I struggle with. I want to be a certain weight and the doctor’s “chart” tells me I need to be even less than MY ideal weight. Both weights are unattainable and I get sucked into this self-hating cycle because I can’t get down there. 🙁

    1. Lori Post author

      That was the one thing that bugged me – the name! However, I enjoy his blog a lot and it seems his book is a lot like that.

  2. pj geek

    I commented on Debbie’s blog also. I read this book and then read most of it again. You did a great review and I could only add that it makes sense to me too. I recognize that ‘traumatic dieter’ in myself–the guilt, fear, regret, and desire all at once.
    The weight that makes sense for me is well over what any chart would say, and that’s what I’m working towards. I’ve worked with different RD’s to get different perspectives and as I needed to. They always start after hearing my story by setting a realistic goal for me and that my realistic goal is a weight of around or slightly over 200 pounds. For some that is their starting place, but for me it’s a goal that I want for comfort, mobility, and peace of mind.

    1. Lori Post author

      Sometimes just doing all the right things and not worrying about where your weight ends up takes a lot of stress off of the process. You can always reevaluate whereever you are.

  3. Ali @ Peaches and Football

    Sounds like it’s worth a read. Why is it we all know what to do but just don’t do it? Where’s the book you buy that does the exercise for you and the chef that arrives at your doorstep with your prepared meals?? Ha ha 🙂 I like the reinforcement though and reading through stuff like this can be the kick-start I need to remember the basics and get back on track. Thanks for the review!

  4. debby

    That’s funny that you started out by saying “this review is long overdue.” Because when I went looking for the draft I started about it, it was dated March something, and I couldn’t believe that much time had passed. I also had to laugh when you said it hurt your head to think about a book review. Thus my reasoning for waiting for you to do a review–you always do such an excellent job!

    Your review is right on. Point #3–so true, and he said it over and over. People do not want to hear that and they don’t want to believe it (even me sometimes.)

  5. Jeannie/Qlts2Slo

    I promised myself some time ago “no more diets, no more diet books”. So far this plan has 63 lbs of validation. (I’m sure some people would say I am dieting, but really, it’s my opinion that counts.) 😀 I’m going to put this on my ‘to read’ list for sometime in the future thanks to your review Lori. It sounds SANE. I’m sure I can figure out some way to rationalize that it’s not really a diet book.

  6. Shelley B

    #3, so much. I remember going to a new doctor after I’d lost 100 pounds and he pulled out his stupid BMI calculator and told me that I needed to get down to 115 pounds, which would have involved much suffering to not only get there, but STAY there. Oooh, it still burns me up that someone like that (authority figure) is telling people such CRAP. Way to set someone up for failure. Anyway. Great review, this person sounds like he’s very cognizant of how challenging weight loss and maintenance really is.

  7. Biz

    It’s all about balance too – I still struggle on a daily basis with that – I try to be 100% “on” and when I have a bite of this or that, I think “fuk it” and give up. I am happy to say I am Week 3 into my new routine, and I feel happy. I can have a piece of pizza, a glass of wine, just not every day!

  8. emmaclaire

    Thanks for the review, Lori. I, too, love #3 because it acknowledges that we are more successful when we aren’t suffering over it all. That balance between what we CAN do and what we’re WILLING to do over the long haul is what’s most important when evaluating a lifestyle plan. It sounds like the book provides some affirmation about what we’re already doing right, with some ideas for tweaks that will make our choices a little better directed – I’ll put it on the summer reading list for sure!

  9. Linda E.

    Each and everytime it is hot out, windy out, I am tired, or no energy, I strongly feel excercising is just that “suffering”. I often hear myself say out loud towards the end of it, “Why do I torture myself so?”. I am literraly only 3 lbs away from what my current goal is, been there for 1 1/2 yrs, LOL!. My own fault though, I am the only one who kept lowering it. I am within a healthy range, I am healthier than I have been in 11 yrs. I will stay right here and defiantely live a life I enjoy. Thanks, now onto getting that in my brain.

  10. Kimberley

    All caught up on your blog…I was behind so many posts it was just like a book. Lots of great stories, wonderful food and fun times. My kind of book.

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