Colvin and Olson contendand few would disagreethat the most difficult part of dieting is keeping weight off. The authors, who have conducted weight-loss programs, interviewed hundreds of dieters who have lost 20 pounds or more, and have retained their new weight for at least six years; here, they present case histories of these ``winners'' and explore attitudes and approaches that ensure successful dieting. Referring to the theories of transactional analysis, the authors advocate keeping the ``adult'' persona in control. They advise striving for ``small wins'' rather than too-large goals that will court disaster (e.g., concentrate on losing one pound at a time). Apart from recommending a ``Forty-Two Days to Forever'' plan (spend 21 days eliminating sugar from your diet, then 21 days eliminating fat as well), the authors suggest suiting one's own diet to personal habits and doing individual research on nutrition (the information provided about the latter is limited). This intelligent guide is geared toward the self-motivated dieter; its value is in its examination of the psychology of dieting. Those looking for a step-by-step game plan won't find it here. Prevention Book Club main selection. Foreign rights: Connie Clausen. October
The authors, psychologists specializing in treating the obese, surveyed a group of successful dieters (defined as men and women who had lost at least 20 percent of their body weight and maintained the loss for no less than two years) to discover the secrets of their success. The portrait that emerges is of a person who possesses self-knowledge, has assumed responsibility for his/her obesity, learned about good nutrition, custom-designed an individual weight loss program, become addicted to exercise, and developed a positive self-image. Colvin and Olson have not devised yet another diet regimen. Sound nutritional advice and compelling personal case histories result in a readable and inspirational book for the general reader. Prevention Book Club main selection. Florence Scarinci, Nassau Community Coll. Lib., Garden City, N.Y.