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When You Eat at the Refrigerator, Pull Up a Chair: 50 Ways to Feel Thin, Gorgeous, and Happy (When You Feel Anything But) Paperback – September 15, 1999

4.7 out of 5 stars 77 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Geneen Roth estimates that she's gained and lost more than 1,000 pounds during her life. That makes her uniquely qualified to write this, her sixth book, which delivers exactly what its subtitle indicates: 50 Ways to Feel Thin, Gorgeous, and Happy (When You Feel Anything But). It's sure to appeal to her considerable cult of readers who've bought her other feel-good, anti-diet books including the bestselling When Food Is Love: Exploring the Relationship Between Eating and Intimacy and Why Weight?: A Guide to Ending Compulsive Eating. It's for the estimated 25 million women in America alone who are on diets; for those who find that they're never happy because they delay gratification ("I'll be happy when I lose 10 pounds"), and those who punish themselves for eating one too many chocolate chip cookies.

Roth's advice is simple, but often beyond the realm of thinking of someone obsessed with calorie counting. She recommends that you eat at least one hot meal every day, as a slice of hot pizza will make you feel more full than a cold and cardboardy one will; that you should do one "exquisitely kind" thing for yourself every day, be it buying new underwear or taking a sledgehammer to your scale; and that you should "separate the desire to be thin from the desire to be cherished." She also gives straight diet advice that can't be found in publications along the lines of Cosmo: "Too much fat makes you fat. But too little makes you fat, too, because you usually make up for eating nonfat foods by eating twice as much. I suggest you allow yourself to eat enough fat to feel full. Part of the reason that many of us feel as if we could start eating at one end of our kitchens and chomp our way clear across the United States is that we never give ourselves permission to feel full without feeling guilty, to eat enough fat when it's not on a binge." Amen. --Erica Jorgensen --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

Recommended reading, '50 Ways' to feel comfortable with your body, There's a boatload of books trying to get women to offload their baggage about eating, overeating and dieting. But almost no one has tackled the subject in a more humorous and straightforward way than Geneen Roth in When You Eat at the Refrigerator, Pull Up a Chair: 50 Ways to Feel Thin, Gorgeous and Happy When You Feel Anything But. Her latest book is based on her own experiences and 20 years of teaching workshops on ways to stop compulsive overeating. (One of her own diet disasters was a prunes and meatball diet.) Roth offers practical advice. She suggests women eat a hot meal daily; get rid of clothes that cut off their circulation; stare only at normal women's bodies, not the bodies of models or actresses; and steer clear of the sneaky weight magnets (eating broken cookies, cleaning kids' plates, nibbling a cake so it looks even). -- Nanci Hellmich, USA Today, Book Review, May 14, 1998 --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 217 pages
  • Publisher: Hachette Books; 1 edition (September 15, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0786885084
  • ISBN-13: 978-0786885084
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (77 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #174,396 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I picked this book up because its title made me laugh - such an outrageous idea. It's quick, easy, scannable, and full of nuggets that helped me begin to approach my problems with dieting and self-care with love and humor. Helped me see that bashing myself, trying to FORCE myself to follow a diet (Atkins, Weight Watchers, whatever) wasn't working for a very good reason. Several excellent reasons. And it sparked a journey of gentle self-inquiry that's proven quite fruitful.
But if it hadn't been a slender volume with a sense of humor, I would have resisted the messages it contains.
This book helped me begin to find answers to these questions:
Why can't I stick to a diet, since being thin is what I want most?
Why do I always come last in my family hierarchy of need (that, incidentally, I'm in control of, hello)?
Am I just doomed to remain fat because of my genes, or my unhappiness? Both?
What's the relationship between self-esteem and my weight?
What does being thin represent to me?
On the strength of this book, I attended a Roth seminar, and that experience is speeding me along, with insights and growth coming thick and fast.
So, if you're ready for something newer and deeper than the latest tips and tricks, or another set of rules, but not quite sold on your own ability to make *anything* work - give this a try. It might be just what you need now.
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Format: Paperback
Geneen Roth is right on target, AGAIN. If you've never read Ms. Roth's books, then this is a great introduction to her philosophy. If you're familiar with her work, then you'll quickly discover that this IS a moveable feast - the portable Roth.
My one criticism, and maybe Ms. Roth will correct this in future printings, is the Table of Contents. This book is supposed to be 'a take along' to be read in bits and pieces as time allows and mood suggests. But when you want to find a nugget, the Table of Contents is a hindrance, not a help. I'm just a reader, not a book editor but below is an excerpt from the current layout and a recommended, improved Table of Contents:
Current:
4.Give Away Clothes that Cut Off Your
Circulation/22 5.Consider Howard Stern and
Live 'As If'/26 6. Learn to Recognize a
Fat-and-Ugly Attack/29 7. Emergency . . .
Suggested
4.Give Away Clothes that Cut Off Your Circulation___22
5.Consider Howard Stern and Live 'As If'__________26
6.Learn to Recognize a Fat-and-Ugly Attack________29
7.Emergency Interventions_____________________34
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Format: Paperback
Thank you, Geneen.
Having read "Feeding the Hungry Heart" about 10 years ago, I can say that she has outdone herself. Her experiences in the last 10 years are explored and expressed firmly, simply and confidently in these pages. Read it, then read it again to be sure and highlight the parts that hit you like a brick in the head.
Yeah, a brick in the head would most likely hurt, and so might some of what she has to say, but that only means that she is hitting a place inside that you have been unwilling to explore because it IS painful. Let these insights shine into your dark corners, clear your mind, set free your heart and soul so you can soar like the eagle that you are.
"Being kind to yourself is the only solution," she says. "Think self-kindness, not self indulgence." We berate and punish ourselves for not being who we think we could or should be, and that self-loathing compounds and turns into fanatical dieting, then bingeing, or fanatical exercise and starvation. And all the defeating, humiliating, exhausting cycles in between. And where do we end up? Always in the same place. Feeling fat which equals unloved, unworthy, unbelievably depressed and out of control.
Would we let our friends get away with calling us those things? Then why do we tolerate it from ourselves?
All you really need to do is be kind to yourself, and your SELF will return the favor.
May not make sense right now. But read the book. Internalize it. Live it. Then you will see. Again, thanks Geneen, for giving me permission to treat myself the way I deserve to be treated.
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Format: Hardcover
I've spent hundreds of dollars and endless hours trying to figure out what was driving my compulsion to overeat. I felt as though she had been living in my skin all these years. I gave a copy of the book to my therapist and said goodbye. I'm pleased to report for the first time in 3years the weight is starting to melt off. I'm so much more than a number on the bathroom scale. I'm declaring peace with myself once and for all. Thanks Geneen
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By A Customer on August 17, 1999
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
i would not be overstating to say that this book has changed my life. what most helped me was ms. roth's instructions to be kind and understanding to ourselves rather than following the old patterns of beating up on ourselves for being overweight, eating the 'wrong' foods, etc. i have passed this book along to at least five of my friends and quoted it to countless others. i highly recommend this book to anyone who needs even the tiniest nudge in the self-esteem area. a truly wonderful book!!
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Format: Hardcover
I purchased this book and read it in one sitting. There were times when I so recognized myself among its pages that my throat would tighten with unshed tears. People, and women in particular, so often have negative images of their bodies, and food obsessions that are not as clearly marked as bulemia or anorexia. This book will teach you how to look differently at your body and begin to love it, no matter WHAT size it is. I plan to carry this book wherever I go, and when I am tempted to mentally flog myself for any number of reasons, I will whip it out for a conference with my "portable best friend." I highly recommend it.
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