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The Skinny on Fat: Our Obsession with Weight Control Hardcover – April, 1999


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Editorial Reviews

From Kirkus Reviews

A bright and lively study on weight control, featuring research into the genetic basis of obesity, past and future drug treatments, self-help diet gurus, and the efforts of the size-acceptance movement to change a fat-unfriendly world. Science writer Vogel (Naked Earth: The New Geophysics, 1995) tackles the weight issue from a variety of angles, interviewing molecular biologists and obesity researchers, as well as activists from the National Association to Advance Fat Acceptance (NAAFA) and promoters of religious-based diet programs. What she creates is a picture of a culture obsessed with the subject of weight control. She relates key developments in the search for an understanding of the role of genes in weight control, making clear that genes provide only the propensity for obesity and that our own habits are what make the difference. Vogel also explores two somewhat contradictory concepts currently in favor: one that obesity is a chronic disease requiring not a quick-weight-loss solution but long-term treatment, and the other that the focus of treatment should not be on reducing fatness but on promoting metabolic fitness. While some might be tempted to find humor in NAAFA activists' attempts to make being fat acceptable or in Gwen Shamblin's Christian-based diet program, Weigh Down, which asks participants to convert their love of food into love for God, Vogel treats these subjects with the same seriousness and respect she affords to scientific researchers. Everyone, it seems, is groping with a complex puzzle that has not yielded itself up to solution. In sum, Vogel reports, there is much still to be learned about how different bodies control weight, and the discoveries that scientists in their labs may come up with will still have to be acted upon by human beings living in a weight-obsessed world. Not another how-to, but a clear and informative guide to the larger issues involved in weight control. -- Copyright ©1999, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

Review

"This book weaves together a very intelligent overview of the latest research in the science of obesity with valuable insights on the human experience of being overweight. Readers will come away with a better understanding of the biological, genetic, and cultural forces that determine our metabolism, which in turn helps to create the diversity of human form." -- Eugenie H. Coakley MA, MPH, Co-Director, Epidemiology Core
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 200 pages
  • Publisher: W.H. Freeman & Company; 1 edition (April 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 071673091X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0716730910
  • Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 1 x 7.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,861,619 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 30, 1999
Format: Hardcover
The title is extremely misleading - it sounds flippant, cursory and disguises the strengths of this excellent book. The author has the ability to explain groundbreaking scientific information in an understandable fashion and place the information in a context that is valuable to the reader. It changed the way I feel about both my body and my relationship with food in a positive way. Highly recommended - even if you are like me and think you know "everything" about weight control.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 31, 2001
Format: Hardcover
This little book is packed full of ground breaking information that will open the eyes of the most dedicated dieter. Although this is not a "how to lose 10lbs in two weeks" manual, it gives the reader the latest scientific research reguarding the reasons for weight gain and offers a sane hope for getting off the roller-coaster of failure and success.
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