The weight-loss industry in America is massive, to the tune of billions of dollars a year spent on ways and means of making our bodies thinner. Yet obesity is on the rise and shows no signs of abating any time soon. Have we failed? Or perhaps the real question is, has the weight-loss industry failed us?
Gina Kolata, author of Ultimate Fitness and an award-winning writer for The New York Times science section, takes a deep and provocative look at the industry that focuses on playing to our ego’s desire to shed pounds as if our lives, and happiness, depended upon it. Kolata digs down to the roots of the weight-loss industry and examines their motives of profit and impossible ideals catered to an audience hungry, pardon the pun, for success at losing pounds and gaining back their sense of selves.
With tons of scientific studies, including an ongoing study Kolata follows with four dieters using the Atkins and low-calorie approaches, the end result will surprise people about just how tough losing weight, and keeping it off, really is. Add to that plenty of anecdotal stories to boot, and the author offers a plateful of reality amidst the hype and claims made by companies pushing pills, surgeries and exercise plans that promise to magically remove excess flab.
This is not a how-to or diet book. It is a serious, yet common-sense, approach to understanding the truth about why we gain weight, and how it comes off for life; no magic pill can ever achieve that goal. For a society obsessed with losing weight and looking good, the truth is a godsend - and for some, maybe even a lifesaver.