Friday, 31 January 2014

Book Review: Love Me Slender

It intrigued me, especially the PR line:
"The book is practical, helpful and (pardon the pun) easy to digest." 

Written by two highly qualified UCLA Professors, Thomas Bradbury and Benjamin Karney, they draw upon their observations of hundreds of couples to explain why conversations about weight and diet can be so challenging––and how all couples can team up in their pursuit of better health.

Doesn't this make sense? My hubby lost 30 lbs. several years ago. It struck me that it would important to support him as much as I could, even while I was gaining weight after I retired! I've lost 10 lbs. this month. Some days I had to stand back and refocus. I would find myself feeling envious that he managed the self control required to do so, while I was dealing with my own eating issues. 

Many partners enable one another for reasons that revolve around many psycho-social issues: social/emotional and self-centred ego-based reasons. Of course, interpersonal issues are very deep and complex, and it makes sense for couple to be retrained to speak honestly and treat one another with dignity and respect. When one experiences great success, the other is called upon to dig deep and laud this success. But it is difficult. This is the same for weight loss as much as career success, for example. The bottom line around weight loss, we know, can be simplified to: eat properly and exercise more. 
The ideas in this book help with this premise and will assist a couple in getting control.
The conversations are not surprising: 

What does my eating pizza have to do with your diet?!”
“Why are you worried about going to the gym? I think you look fantastic!”
“You’re going to eat that?! Didn’t you say you were trying to lose weight?”

This book, to be published in February, the relationship month, will be a wonderful addition to any couple's library. Heaven knows, we can all use more information and digest it.

Love Me Slender Offers a New Perspective on Health – and Shows How Relationships Enable Healthier Habits:

▪     New Years’ Resolutions are often a distant memory by the time April rolls around.  How can partners recognize and mobilize the strengths in their relationship to help make these healthy resolutions stick?
▪     Studies show that couples gain weight as they settle into their relationship, and again after their children are born.  But why are some couples able to counteract this effect?
▪     What do partners misunderstand the most when it comes to one another’s health and weight? What are the best approaches to initiating a more productive –– and more compassionate –– dialog?  

Love Me Slender Introduces Surprising New Research on Health and Relationships:

 ▪     Good Health Is Relational”:  How the behaviours that are most central to determining our weight and fitness are inextricably linked to closeness and communication in our intimate relationships.
▪     The Halo Effect”:  How both partners benefit even if only one partner resolves to become healthier.
▪     Reward Substitution”:  How intimate partners are uniquely positioned to shift each other’s attention toward long-term goals for health, making it easier to resist unhealthy temptations in the moment.
▪     Invisible Support”:  How partners can encourage one another in subtle but potent ways, going ‘below the radar’ to avoid the criticism and defensiveness that overt support can elicit.
▪     The Boomerang Effect”:  How reassuring and praising our partners can backfire, and why a combination of acceptance and pointed encouragement gives us the support we need to change.

“Love Me Slender: How Smart Couples Team Up to Lose Weight, Exercise More, and Stay Healthy Together.” 

By Thomas Bradbury, PhD, and Benjamin Karney, PhD.  
Publisher: Simon and Schuster/Touchstone / Hardcover Original 9” x 6” 
 Publication Date 4 February 2014 / Language: English
 $25.99 List Price / 320 pages / ISBN 9781451674514

1 comment:

Yamini MacLean said...

Hari OM
Great place to start - though of course ANY 'relationship' could benefit from the approach be it parent child, siblings, the best mates we kick around with... congrats on your wght loss. Could shovelling snow be a new sport??!! YAM xx