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Making Weight: Healing Men's Conflicts with Food, Weight, and Shape Paperback – April 21, 2000
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From Library Journal
Andersen (psychiatry, Iowa State Univ.; ed., Males with Eating Disorders), Leigh Cohn (ed., Eating Disorders, the Journal of Treatment and Prevention), and Thomas Holbrook, a medical specialist, also address men's concerns with physical appearance, drawing attention to fat as a men's issue and focusing on obesity and eating disorders. After extended discussions on the developmental, social, and evolutionary factors contributing to appearance ad self-esteem, the authors provide "a proactive proposition for men who want to feel and look better" in "Ten Steps to Healthy Living," with advice on nutrition, exercise, relationships, and social and spiritual concerns. Holbrook relates his own story of recovery from eating disorders and excessive exercise. Courses of treatment are described, and a final chapter offers advice for families and loved ones... [Gives] reading lists and resources on where to seek further help... recommended for public library collections.
Lucille M. Boone, San Jose P.L., CA
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.
"A powerful, much-needed exposé of the current state of the male psyche and body image." -- Margo Maine, Ph.D. Author of Father Hunger: Fathers, Daughters & Food
"A terrific book about men's concerns with their shape and weight. Highly recommended!" -- John P. Foreyt, Ph.D. Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX
"Finally, weight-obsessed men have an exceptional resource that is authoritative, sensitive and practical." -- David M. Garner, Ph.D. Co-editor, Handbook of Treatment for Eating Disorders
"This book is a very accessible, highly practical combination of the authors' personal, professional, and political experiences in helping males." -- Michael Levine, Ph.D. Professor of Psychology Kenyon College, Gambier, OH
"This will be the standard text on males and eating disorders for years to come." -- Craig Johnson, Ph.D. President-elect of Eating Disorders Awareness and Prevention
Top customer reviews
The authors take the first few chapters to provide background on the different problems. There's a lot of repetition and the authors have this very annoying and dated habit of constantly giving a hat tip to women and feminism - odd, considering the topic is about men's eating disorders, but not surprising given the age of the authors (around 70). Clearly, the 1960's and 70's made a big impression on them.
The authors also belittle the problem of obesity. While they do mention health issues that may result, their attitude is more like "don't worry too much about it." This makes no sense considering the rise of many health problems caused by obesity, such as diabetes.
The recommendations for diet and food groups are also very dated. There is no mention of high fructose corn syrup but plenty of tired food pyramid recommendations along with a mention of avoiding whey protein. While I'm sure the authors gave help and hope to many men and are to be commended for that, the book seems to be a summation of their 30+ years of practice and not a description of leading edge treatment going into the 21st century.
One of the authors describes his multi-year fight with anorexia. While he finally triumphed, he did not instill in me any confidence in psychiatry. He is a psychiatrist and had a practice treating eating disorders while he himself suffered from anorexia, and he didn't even recognize or identify his own problem for years.
Unfortunately, this book provides very light coverage on self help for any of these problems. There's probably more on anorexia and bulimia and less on body dysmorphic disorder and general dieting for those who are overweight.
If you have any of these problems, I'd suggest looking for a different book.
Overall, this book makes a very important contribution ... and one that you can recommend to your patients for an informative and insightful examination of men's concerns with weight and shape.
The book is by no means a rehashing of wellness truisms - the authors have managed to offer gender-specific, male-centered discussion of a whole gamut of food/eating-related topics ranging in scope from sexuality to fitness to such appearance topics as hair and love handles; and have offered a more than superficial analysis of self-help, psychological and psychopharmacological treatment options.
Of particular importance is the section for significant others of men with eating problems. The book offers ways to reach out to men struggling with weight management, in face-saving, ego-non-threatening ways. As such, the book is written with a good degree of psychological savvy and is clearly informed by the authors' extensive professional as well as personal experience with eating disorders in males.
"Making Weight" certainly makes the grade as a no-nonsense resource for men struggling with weight, shape and appearance.
Pavel Somov, Ph.D.
Author of "Eating the Moment: 141 Mindful Practices to Overcome Overeating One Meal at a Time" (New Harbinger, 2008)