Weight problems: self-help books

Overcoming Weight Problems
Author Jeremy Gauntlett-Gilbert & Clare Grace, 2005.

'This guide provides a practical and accessible Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) strategy for people managing their weight problems'. 

Review: Overcoming Weight Problems is an excellent and very practical guide to the psychological aspects of weight loss. This book gives you the information and guidelines to manage your own weight loss, keep it off and change your appearance and lifestyle. The book starts with a few exercises to help you find motivation. It then teaches you how to spot thoughts that are unhelpful or biased, and find new ways of looking at the situation. A classic example would be, "I've blown it, there's no point in trying any more," after eating too much at a party. The rest of the book focuses on making gradual changes to your eating habits and activity levels that will work for you in the long term. Rather than tell you to launch straight into a diet, the authors ask you to keep a diary of what you eat and how much you exercise for a few weeks. You then analyse this, looking for changes that you can make with minimal disruption, spotting problems and coming up with solutions (the book teaches you problem-solving techniques). You aren't given a set diet or exercise regime to follow, as the authors rightly acknowledge that these resources are readily available elsewhere, and different approaches will suit different people. However, the book does provide information on popular diets, which ones are safe and healthy and which ones are likely to work in the long term. It also encourages you to look at your past dieting experience (if applicable) to help you choose an approach that is likely to work for you.