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The Diet Survivor’s Handbook: 60 Lessons in Eating Acceptance and Self-Care

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NEW LESSONS

"Every soul has to learn the whole lesson for itself. It must go over the whole ground. What it does not see, what it does not live, it will not know." – Ralph Waldo Emerson

Look for a new lesson with the start of each season.



NEW LESSON: FALL 2015

The holiday season can be an especially challenging time for people with Binge Eating Disorder (BED). For some it's a time of family and social gatherings where special foods are widely available. For others it's a time when difficult feelings surface. For everyone, it's a time when we're bombarded by diet talk from the media and from family, friends and colleagues. Since dieting behavior can cause and/or sustain binge eating, it's important to make sure you don't fall into the diet mentality trap. Here are some gentle reminders to help you navigate the holiday season.

Read more: Fall 2015

NEW LESSON: SUMMER 2015

As you learn to become an attuned eater, you will become more in tune with your whole self. Notice that you have needs in other areas of your life as well.

The basic act of feeding yourself can become a metaphor for meeting your needs in other areas of your life. As you check in with yourself to ask what you're hungry for, you're likely to check in with yourself about other needs as well. As you feel entitled to meet your needs by eating when you are hungry and choosing foods that are right for you, you're likely to feel more entitled to meet other types of needs. As you enjoy the satisfaction that comes from making a good match with your hunger, you're likely to feel satisfaction when you meet other needs. As you see that there is enough food in the world to meet your hunger needs, you're more likely to feel that your other needs can be fulfilled as well.

So how does all of this wonderful stuff begin to happen? The key is to pay attention. You already know how to pay attention to physical hunger, and you're working toward identifying your feelings. The combination of these two skills will empower you to listen to other aspects of yourself.

Read more: Summer 2015

NEW LESSON: WINTER 2015

Video Clip from Documentary Film: America The Beautiful 2: The Thin Commandments (2011)

Read more: Winter 2015

NEW LESSON: FALL 2014

Meditation increases your physical and mental well-being. Consider whether you would like to incorporate meditation into your life.

Diet survivors, like everyone else, frequently feel, "stressed out." The constant stress that results from fast-paced and pressured lives takes a toll on you both physically and mentally. Meditation, the ancient art of relaxing your body and quieting your mind, has been shown to counteract the effects of stress.

As you think about whether meditation is right for you, consider some of these benefits. Meditation is associated with the reduction of high blood pressure, serum cholesterol levels, anxiety, depression, chronic pain, and health care use. Meditation provides deep rest as measured by decreased metabolic rate, lower heart rate, and reduced workload on the heart. Meditation decreases free radicals, which are unstable molecules that can cause tissue damage and appear to be a major factor in many diseases as well as aging. Levels of lactate and cortisol, both chemicals associated with stress, also decrease. Meditation improves airflow to the lungs, resulting in easier breathing and helpful to people with asthma. Meditation increases mental clarity, enhances creativity, and increases the longevity and quality of life. What a list!

Read more: Fall 2014