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Eat Your Way to Sexy: Reignite Your Passion, Look Ten Years Younger and Feel Happier Than Ever Paperback – December 27, 2011

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Eat Your Way to Sexy: Reignite Your Passion, Look Ten Years Younger and Feel Happier Than Ever + Eat Your Way To Happiness: 10 Diet Secrets to Improve Your Mood, Curb Cravings and Keep the Pounds Off + Food & Mood: The Complete Guide to Eating Well and Feeling Your Best, Second Edition
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Harlequin; Original edition (December 27, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0373892535
  • ISBN-13: 978-0373892532
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 7.1 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,002,318 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

Carla had struggled with depression and a steady weight gain for five years, until she turned around her mood and waistline in a blink-of-an-eye "aha" moment.

After trying to get a grip on her life for several years, she went to a psychiatrist, who let her vent about frustrations and lack of energy. The doctor listened while Carla whined about her weight and how the sizzle had drained out of her love life. They both agreed that there didn't appear to be any major issues to explain the general funk. The psychiatrist suggested that Carla make some changes in her diet and lifestyle, maybe do some volunteer work, join the gym, talk to a dietitian. They brainstormed several options. Then, if all else failed, she'd prescribe a mild antidepressant.

That's how Carla ended up in my office. I was one of her homework assignments—see a dietitian, when that flops—which, of course, she assumed it would—then go back to the psychiatrist for medication. But, like so many best-laid plans, Carla's life was about to take a 180-degree turn.

A brief review of what she was eating made it crystal clear why she felt so bad and had gained 20 pounds. I concluded, "You're eating junk. No wonder you feel like junk." Carla looked me straight in the eye and I could tell a light had gone on in her mind.

"It was one of those 'aha' moments for me. The statement was so simple, yet it really hit home," says Carla. "I realized that since the baby was born, I'd fallen into this time mantra, telling myself over and over again that I didn't have enough time to work out, plan elaborate dinners or even bother with my weight or my looks. I was in the habit of grabbing quick-fix foods, like granola bars, chips or bean bur-ritos from a taco stand on my way to work. I still made dinner most nights, but I'd cut corners there, too. I was addicted to Marie Callender's frozen entrees and more than once the family ate boxed mac and cheese for dinner. Yet I told myself I was eating pretty good. Hey, my eating habits were no worse than anyone else's! I knew my food choices had contributed to the weight gain, but it never dawned on me that my slow but steady diet demise paralleled my slide into fatigue and depression."

Carla is not alone. In fact, odds are you probably are just like her. Only one in every 100 people in this country meet even minimum standards of a balanced diet. I'm not talking optimal here. Just minimum!

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) developed a questionnaire to assess people's eating habits. It's called the Healthy Eating Index and it divides the diet into 10 categories, such as the amount of bad fat you eat, the number of servings of fruits and the amount of vegetables in the diet. A diet is ranked from 0 to 10 in each category. Eat the optimal amount of fruits, for example, and you'll score a ten in that category. Score perfectly in all 10 categories and you get 100%.

Few people come close to a passing grade on the Healthy Eating Index. Americans consistently average a score of 52 on the scale of 0 to 100. In other words, we flunk eating. If our kids came home with a score like that on a math test, we'd ground them and hire tutors. Yet most people when asked how they rate their eating habits, answer that they think they do "Not great, but pretty well." Virtually all of them are delusional!

Have You Lost That Lovin' Feeling?

As our eating habits took a nosedive in the past few decades, the rates of depression skyrocketed.

Today, depression is a leading cause of disability, second only to high blood pressure. Almost 15 million Americans are battling serious depression. Another 3.3 million hide under the sad umbrella most of the time. About 7 out of 10 Americans are overweight, which increases their risk for depression. (As people lose weight, their mood improves.) Not only does depression undermine a person's enjoyment of life, but it increases the risk fourfold for other health problems, such as heart disease. It also is the fast track to Frumpville, since 7 out of 10 people battling the blues say they lost their mojo somewhere down the road. In short, you can't get to sexy if you are chained to the blues wagon.

Most people turn to medication first to solve the problem. Antidepressants like Prozac are prescribed more often than any other pill besides the birth control pill. I am not saying thereisn't a place for medication when you're trying to "fix" depression, but drugs are not the Holy Grail of treatment, either. For one thing, up to 40% of people don't respond to these medications and even those who do, report the drugs don't erase the problem. Meds might make some people feel closer to normal or at least help them blunt the pain. But those drugs also can destroy sex drive, cloud thinking and kick self-confidence in the butt, which then undermines mood, leading to an even lower sex drive. Medication also comes with a few other nasty side effects, including fatigue, weight gain (up to 9 pounds a month!) and impotence. I'm not sure what is worse—the bad mood or the side effects from the drugs to treat it!

A Mood Makeover

Luckily, Carla's psychiatrist felt it was worth her trying some life changes before she started popping pills. It worked. Once Carla fueled her body with the foods it needed to run well, her weight started dropping, while her mood improved.

Like Carla, you can reclaim and sustain hope, joy, an upbeat attitude and a confident spirit by making a few simple adjustments to how you treat your body and your life…with not one single side effect other than improved energy, lower disease risk, a slimmer waistline and a return of that mojo!

Let's get this straight right now. This is important, so listen up. You were not designed to be tired, depressed or overweight. It is not one of our basic survival skills. None of those modern-day problems would have served our ancient ancestors well on the savannah a million years ago. Our species survived because our ancestors were mentally and physically strong. A tired, grumpy, fat caveman would not have outrun a saber-toothed tiger, or would have been left behind when the tribe moved on. (Who's got time to give Ukluk a pep talk when the Ice Age is coming?) Depression and obesity are results of civilization, not genes. They are not "normal." They are not instinct, destiny or inevitable.

You also were not designed to eat Pop-Tarts, Cheez Whiz, white bread, potato chips or soft drinks. In fact, most of the more than 30,000 items at your local grocery store never crossed the lips of any of our ancient ancestors, dating back millions of years. The Pilgrims would not recognize our modern excuse for food, either. Even a Civil War soldier would be amazed at what we are putting in our mouths. In short, our eating habits have changed astronomically in the past 100 years, yet we are genetically identical to our ancient ancestors who evolved and thrived for eons on diets composed of fruits, vegetables, root plants, wild grass seed, wild game, seafood, nuts and a bit of honey.

Processed foods—made with refined grains, added sugars, fat, salt, additives, colorants, stabilizers, preservatives and more—are as alien to your body as breathing carbon monoxide. Put junk into your body and guess what? You get fat, tired, obstinate, depressed, forgetful and cranky. And you end up with a team of physicians doing damage control.

That's what had happened to Carla. The general malaise that had taken over her life crept up slowly and steadily as she turned her back on the foods that sustain a happy, vibrant, sexy life. Instead, she wolfed down processed junk. Eat junk and you will feel, look and act like junk.

But—and here's the great part!—eat well and, I promise, like Carla, it will turn your life around. You'll be happier, leaner, more energetic, and you will feel sexier!!! The better you eat, the healthier and more vibrant you are. The healthier you are, the sexier you feel.

Carla followed the diet advice I gave her that day. She slowly adopted the six rules from the S-Ex-Y Diet (the Sensual Extraordinary You Diet) and within six weeks, she had dropped 12 of the 20 pounds she wanted to lose, had canceled the follow-up appointment with the doctor ("Who needs drugs when you can feel this good with food?") and even her coworkers noticed her newfound energy.

More About the Author

My "thing" is that I keep up with the current nutrition research. I've been reading 100s of research studies for years, then packaging that information into news-you-can-use for magazines, books, national and local television and radio, presentations to the general public, and continuing education seminars for health professionals. I specialize in understandable and practical information on how to eat and supplement and why to prevent disease and premature aging, promote health, and attain and maintain a healthy weight. For the past two decades, my aim has been to be the source of nutrition information that people can really trust to be accurate, up-to-date, and sound. I passionately love the science of nutrition, as well as cooking and preparing healthy meals, and believe with all my heart that if people just nourished their bodies with high-quality fuel, they would be rewarded a hundred-fold with health, energy, vitality, longevity, clear thinking, a fit figure, and improved moods.

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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See all 10 customer reviews
This is a fun read with a lot of information--and I've read quite a few "diet" books.
Celia Juliano
This book has helped me do both...And who doesn't want to look and feel more sexy... I am on my way to a healthier, sexier me.
Julie G
Lots of great tips, shopping lists and recipes that will help me make smart shopping choices at the grocery store.
Linda Landers

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Deb D. on January 30, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
You can just tell that Elizabeth Somer practices what she preaches by her sassy delivery of information in Eat Your Way to Sexy! I know she meant the book for everybody but I can't help but think it will particularly resonate with post-menopausal Baby Boomers such as myself. Elizabeth's irreverent and direct style is refreshing, and provocative at times. She doesn't preach but rather inspires by goosing you into action. And it's not just about food. Elizabeth has tons of tips for feeling sexier that have more to do with what goes on between your ears. Think I'll go out and buy some sexy lingerie now......If you feel you've lost your mojo, buy this book to get it back!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Elizabeth Blair on January 17, 2012
Format: Paperback
"Wow! Elizabeth Somer has done it again. "Eat Your Way to Sexy" is a remarkable book that will finally move the conversation about the link between healthy eating and feeling sexy forward. Moreover, it will likely change your life.

While reading Elizabeth Somer's "Eat Your Way to Sexy", I felt like I was sitting with her over a glass of wine. The book captures her real-life persona . . . one of encouragement, humor, support, genuine caring - and, her special gift for helping each of us achieve our personal goals.

True appreciation for our own attractiveness is an infinitely worthy goal. Somer is one of those rare experts who presents the whole picture, but offers fun step-by-step plans that make it easy to re-kindle and enhance this essential part of our everyday lives. She's got all the facts, and spices them up with great anecdotes and recipes. Her conversational style that makes this book a joy to read.

Most of us will never feel sexy all the time but Somer makes a compelling case for taking what we can get -- and thoroughly enjoying it for as long as we can. She teaches us that feeling sexy is, at its root, is about owning ourselves and making smart food choices to enhance our natural sexiness. It's being at home in our own skins. Elizabeth Somer has written an invaluable resource that shows us how."
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Janet H on February 20, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Great book! Gives you all the information you need not only to "Eat Your Way to Sexy," but to build a healthier lifestyle. The author gives you all the tools you need to create that happier, healthier, sexier life. There is a week's worth of daily menus - shopping lists to take with you to the store - and wonderful recipes (and the names will make you smile). Super information on how to be healthier mentally, physically and emotionally. This is a well-researched book that presents information in an upbeat, humorous way that made me want to keep on reading! Now I walk backwards once in awhile, eat with my left hand (and I am right-handed) and engage in mindful meditation. If you want to know why this is important, then read this wonderful book. My life is already changing - and I love the changes I am seeing and feeling.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By dolores wisbrock on January 18, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
Eat Your Way to Sexy is a great book whose information is not just useful but empowering. It's loaded with valuable tools that will help you regain a zest for life. The easy to follow recipes are quick, delicious and will help you start on the path to healthy eating. Finally, a diet book that is fun to read and makes sense for any age!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Celia Juliano on July 26, 2012
Format: Paperback
This is a fun read with a lot of information--and I've read quite a few "diet" books. I like the up-to-date and sensible facts and the way this was sprinkled with the fun of the "sexy" approach. A lot of it is geared toward married people/couples, but could be helpful to many, especially if you enjoy a conversational writing style and sex talk. ;) I also like the shopping list, as a reminder what foods are healthiest--I haven't tried any of the recipes yet.
My only other problem is there are few options for how to go vegetarian--there is a heavy emphasis on fish in the book--and even though I live in a major metropolitan area, I have a hard time finding the DHA fortified products she mentions. So, while I have implemented some of the tips, I haven't been following the program as a whole.
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