From the Publisher
“Heather helps you successfully identify and attack your diet devils—and helps you set a path for healthy eating!”
Jennifer Maanavi, founder of Physique 57
“Heather’s advice on how to lose weight is right on the mark! You will not only lose weight but also have healthier, more radiant skin.”
Doris Day, MD
"Heather Bauer is the only angel you need on your shoulder when facing the many everyday eating temptations. She has identified what plagues us most and simplified the solution into insightful, actionable and doable tactics. Amen!"
Amanda Freeman, co-founder of Vital Juice
"If Bread is the Devil, then Heather Bauer is the Angel. Heather describes the “pitfalls’ we all face trying to maintain healthy lifestyles – emotional eating, carb & other food overeats, and stress eating – as “devils” that we need to recognize & conquer. As a mother of two sets of twins and a pediatrician/entrepreneur, I was blown away by Heather’s approach to the behavioral connections to healthy nutrition & balance. She’s the real deal!"
Dr. Jen Canter (Dr. Jen®), Pediatrician
"Bread Is the Devil answers every question you have ever had about diet and nutrition. It's a life changer!”
Cooper Lawrence, author of The Yoga Club and radio personality
Read an Excerpt
Bread Is the Devil
Unmasking Your Diet Devils
When I meet a client in my office for the first time, I become a diet detective. My job is to try and figure out why this person can't lose weight. Most people come to me having done a host of diets, pills, shakes, cleanses, hypnotherapy, diet spas, ashram visits ... you name it. So I begin asking questions. What's going on in your life? Are you single? Married? A workaholic? A commuter? Do you have kids? Live alone? Which diet worked best for you in the past? This last question tells me if you can eat carbs or if carbs are a trigger, and if portion control is an issue for you or if it's more about food choices. Every answer brings me closer to understanding what has held you back in the past. By the end of the session I know why you can't lose weight or can't lose enough weight, or why you lost weight and then gained it back. Now I know your Devils and I know how to guide you to permanent weight loss.
Permanent weight loss is not just about what you eatit's about behavior. We all know what to eat. It's the behavior that's hard to change. That's why I find my clients have great success when they work with a relatively flexible eating plan while focusing on the circumstancesthe Devilsthat prompt them to eat. You most likely know what to eat. But it's those moments of weakness, stress or boredom you need help with: your night eating, your picking morsels off your kids' plates, your candy grabs at the receptionist's desk, your struggle with eating out without pigging out and all the other Devils that throw you off track.
So what Diet Devils do you have? Below are a series of questions I ask my clients when I am trying to determine what gets them off track. A number that refers to one of the ten Devils follows each question (in a few instances, there is more than one Devil identified). Go through and answer the questions, and jot down the numbers that apply to you. After the quiz, review your numbersthe numbers that show up most frequently are your major Devilsand see which Devils you need to concentrate on.
The Devil Detective Quiz
The Answer Key: Introducing the Ten Devils
If the same number pops up for you multiple times, this is your main Devil that throws you off your diet track. If you wrote down more than one number, you have a few Devils troubling you. Here is a brief description of each Devil:
1. FREE-STYLE DIETING. This is the Devil that prompts you to try to lose weight on your ownno plan, no real strategy, no serious commitment, just the hope that cutting down on your food intake or eliminating a category of food or promising yourself "no more cookies" will have the desired effect. If you've tried this approach, you're not alone and you no doubt know that it just doesn't work. You typically find yourself right back where you started when life throws you a curveballor a giant meatball. After a Free-Style failure, you're typically more discouraged than ever. Well, banish your half-hearted stab at dieting. My Free-Style strategies will convince you to commit to a plan and thus lose the weight once and for all. Once you've banished the Free-Style Devil, your head will be in the right diet space and you'll be empowered to adopt your new healthy-eating lifestyle. (See page 79.)
2. THE PLUNGE. This is the Devil that prompts you to true despair. It's the uncontrolled binge, often after a stretch of successful dieting. It's a pint of Ben & Jerry's or an entire sleeve of chocolate chip cookies or all of the above. It makes you feel hopeless and totally out of control. Almost all of my clients have suffered the Plunge, and it usually throws them completely off track. You may be surprised by my basic approach to a Plunge: I believe the most important strategy for Plungers is not trying to forever ban a Plunge. That may not be possible. Rather the strategies I outline for Plungers help them to navigate the dark waters of binge eating by not only learning to recognize and avoid temptations to the Plunge but also, more important, learning to recover from a Plunge and go on. It's only partly about the actual eating: More critical is what goes on in your mind post-Plunge. My strategies will help you recover from a Plunge and move on to renewed efforts and ultimate success. (See page 87.)
3. THE LATE-NIGHT SHUFFLE. It could be a bag of popcorn, a box of crackers, a series of frozen treats but, really, what it's about is a bad habit. It's the routine of nighttime, after-dinner snacking that has perhaps become a part of your daily routine. You vow each morning that you'll never do it again, but without the right strategies it's a losing battle. Many people are unaware of how these evening calories can add up. They can eat well all day but somehow ignore the morsels they consume come sundown. Some people rely on "diet" snacks in the evening, but these can be as counterproductive as any other munchies. It's not terribly difficult to banish the Late-Night Shuffle. You just need to recognize the habit and use my strategies to substitute good behaviors for bad. Once you achieve this, you'll be amazed at the effect it has on your weight loss progress. (See page 99.)
4. EMOTIONAL EATING. This is the Devil that lodges snugly in your head. It's not about hunger; it's not about habit. It's about how you feel and how that makes you eat. An overheard criticism of your parenting skills?
A boss who's piling on the work until you're so stressed your hair is falling out? A relative who prods you to overeat at each holiday meal? Emotions are powerful, and if you don't recognize how they can sabotage your diet it's almost impossible to win the battle with this Devil. I'll outline the issues that could prompt you to be an Emotional Eater and, more important, the simple strategies that will help you recognize Emotional Eating and avoid it in the future. (See page 113.)
5. LITTLE DEVILS. We all adore our children, but they can make it hard to lose weight in so many little devilish ways, from the time they steal from our exercise routines to the tempting foods they eat, like peanut butter and Halloween treats. It's challenging to eat lean and clean when you're trying to satisfy their growing bodies. But it's not impossible. I'll show you how to eat well whether you're dealing with the common "double dinner" dilemma of parenting (one with daddy; one with the kids) or the post-soccer practice, fast-food challenge. I even have strategies for dealing with picky eaters and the challenge of feeding the "skinny kid" as well as the delicate issue of little girls who are watching Mommy diet. (See page 130.)
6. BOREDOM BINGEING. Eating is fun. It's pleasurable. It's a tempting way to fill an empty afternoon. But there's a big price to pay. Many of us don't recognize that Boredom Bingeing can add hundreds of calories to our daily intake and can make permanent weight loss near impossible. Boredom Bingeing is all about mindless eating. Snacking, munching, noshing, nibbling ... . Not because you're hungry or because you're sitting at an actual meal but because you're faced with a bowl of candy or someone left muffins in the office kitchen or you are simply trying to fill an empty niche in your day by checking the fridge one more time. Boredom Bingeing is distracted eating. It's not really pleasurable or satisfying. Why do we eat when we're not really hungry? Same reason people climb mountains: because they're there. You can break yourself of Boredom Bingeing and get a real boost in your weight loss progress, as well as a real boost to your self-esteem, by using my Boredom Bingeing strategies and getting better control of your time as well as your eating. I'll teach you how to regulate your meals so you'll stay satisfied and thus better control your food intake and banish Boredom Bingeing forever. (See page 145.)
7. SLOTH. This Devil is about exercising, or rather, not exercising. It's the "don't get out of your chair, your favorite program is coming on" Devil. But moving more is important to weight loss. It's not the most important factor, but it definitely plays a role, and I'll show you how you can tame the Sloth Devil and turbocharge your weight loss. Some clients are nervous when they come to see me because they don't exercise and they feel guilty about it. If this is you, relax. When you deal with your Sloth Devil, I firmly believe that managing your food intake is the first and most important step you can take to lose weight. You're going to work on that goal first. And then, when you're ready, I'll show you some very simple strategies that will help you work exercise into your schedule. You may surprise yourself and become a marathoner. But even if you simply add some regular activity to your life, I'll show you how getting off the sofa is going to make a big difference to your long-term health and weight. (See page 161.)
8. CELEBRATIONS! VACATIONS! Nothing's more fun than a party or a trip, but too often these events totally derail our best diet intentions. Whether it's an office holiday party, a cousin's wedding or your long-awaited week at the beach, this Devil prompts us to throw caution to the wind and indulge, indulge, indulge! So many people begin a diet and then something comes up: an anniversary, a trip, a wedding ... . All their progress and resolutions go to hell as they slip back into old habits following a major celebratory indulgence. Life doesn't have to be like this. It really is possible to manage special events without losing control. Whether you're heading out of the country on a dream trip to Paris or simply trying to cope with an upcoming dinner party, I have the techniques that will help you eat well. Sometimes it's a matter of knowing how to think about eating while on vacation. Other times it's navigating an office birthday party. No matter: If this is your Devil, I'll show you how to eat well and have fun at the same time. (See page 175.)
9. ROAD HOGGING. This is the devil that sits on your dashboard. Or in your carry-on bag. Or anywhere you travel. It knocks you off your schedule and lures you into making excuses for poor food choices and erratic eating. It's really a challenge to eat well while traveling, whether you're doing your daily commute or flying around the world on business. It's difficult to deal with delayed meals, canceled meals and food that you'd never choose if you had a choice. If RoadHogging bedevils you, I can help. I have solutions to the road-food blues and tips that can help you navigate every conveyance from a plane to a minivan. You can manage a healthy, satisfying airport breakfast as well as an easy posttrip reentry dinner with the RoadHogging strategies. (See page 195.)
10. THE DINE-OUT DEVIL. Dine-Out Devils are one of the most common dilemmas faced by my clients. Do you eat out frequently? Eating well at restaurants is a special challenge. If you dine out regularly for business or pleasure, you need help in navigating restaurant menusand alcohol choicesso that you can reach your weight loss goals. The simple fact is that eating out can be fraught with diet pitfallsbeginning with the bread that lands on the table the minute you sit down. But there's good news on the restaurant scene these days: Chefs are working hard to satisfy the desire many people have to eat well and to limit their calorie intake. Of course you do need some tricks and strategies if you're going to enjoy restaurant food and lose weight at the same time. I will help you with everything from how to navigate a fast-food restaurant to how to manage alcohol while sticking to your weight loss goals. I have simple "restaurant rules" that will make eating out and losing weight mutually compatible. (See page 214.)
Now that you have identified your Diet Devils, let's see how we can conquer them!
BREAD IS THE DEVIL. Copyright © 2012 by Heather Bauer. All rights reserved. For information, address St. Martin's Press, 175 Fifth Avenue, New York, N.Y. 10010.