Healthy Eating Book Review & Giveaway: But I Deserve This Chocolate

By Lisa Christie
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Alum Jill C reviews “But I Deserve This Chocolate,” a book on the excuses we make that prevent us from living a healthy life. We’ll be giving away one copy on Friday, April 20, through random drawing, which you can enter by leaving a VALID e-mail address and telling us why you want the book in the comments section below.

I recently received a copy of “But I Deserve This Chocolate” by Dr. Susan Albers, PsyD. It’s a book about the self-sabotaging and self-critical thoughts that keep alive our unhealthy eating habits. Dr. Albers lists the most common “excuses” we often use and then gives mindfulness techniques to address each one. Many of the excuses will probably sound as familiar to you as they did to me.

One excuse that I related to was “But I Want More Food!” Often while I am eating I can sense that I have hit the satisfaction level in my body. I get sad and feel loss even though I know that my body doesn’t need more food. When we feel this way, Dr. Albers encourages us to take time to think or journal through what we may really want more of in our lives, because it’s probably not the food. We are led to believe by the media that having more makes one happier. But really, is that true? When I eat more than what my body desires, I feel physically uncomfortable and lethargic.

Another excuse that resonated with me was “I Can’t Decide What To Eat.” Did you know that, on average, humans make about 220 decisions related to food each day? No wonder we get overwhelmed! But our inner wisdom can tell us what and how to eat if we listen. Our bodies give us messages about whether we want sweet, salty, crunchy, protein, etc. Dr. Albers suggests having five healthy meal options available that we feel we can eat mindfully. Our kitchens should always have these ingredients on hand so we can prepare those meals when our bodies guide us.

Jon Kabat-Zinn’s definition of mindfulness is “‘intentionally drawing your awareness and attention to the present moment in a nonjudgmental and accepting way.” I don’t know about you, but I have a hyperactive critic in my inner world. Dr. Albers says that over time, our inner critic is fueled by other people, the media, habit, our  personalities, biology, and perfectionism. Picture a backseat driver, like your Great Aunt Lola, criticizing you in the rear view mirror. That voice is not typically helpful in getting you to your destination, is it? Does your inner critic ever bark out the following thoughts?

“You have no willpower!”

“You shouldn’t eat that!”

“You cheated on your diet!”

“You’re not worth the effort!”

Sometimes these thoughts deflate me. I have to remind myself that thoughts are not facts. Then I sit with them, listen to their stories, and decide for myself if they need to be challenged.

If your inner critic is yelling out these kinds of things, bringing mindfulness into the picture will help. I would encourage you to read “But I Deserve This Chocolate.” It’s an excellent tool to keep you mindfully moving toward a goal of health.

Read more about the other books by Dr. Albers, Eating Mindfully” and “50 Ways to Soothe Yourself without Food,” staples in the Green Mountain bookstore.

Read more on Jill’s blog or her Facebook page.

20 Responses (Add Yours)

  • I would love to win the book!! I’m sure that there are plenty of things that I’ve said were legitimate reasons but were actually just excuses. I’d love the chance to identify these as excuses and then find ways to combat them!

  • I hope many women out there have the chance to read this motivating book.

  • Lisa says:

    Hi everyone. Please remember to leave a valid e-mail with your comments so we can get in touch if you win the book.

  • Shannon says:

    I would also love to win this book! I have a history of disordered eating and emotional eating has always been a large part of that. It is definitely a challenge to work through all that and this book seems great!

  • Penelope says:

    This sounds like a wonderful book. I certainly would love to learn more strategies to approach food and eating in a more mindful way, with less critical self-talk and self-sabotage. Thanks for your wonderful blog and all that you do!

  • Nicole D. says:

    Yes, please; I would love to get off the roller coaster of excuses and find out exactly why I think I need them.

  • Ashley S says:

    I’d love to enter because this looks like a book that could really help me with my disordered eating!

  • I’m wondering if this is a good read for the clients at my gym; sounds like it might be! My inner critic rants less about food choices and more about falling short in my training. It’s strange, because there’s a fine line between accountability and criticism. I don’t know where that line lies, but my critic sometimes helps me keep on the straight and narrow, though most of the time he’s just swinging his bat to see how badly he can bruise me. It’s great to have a mechanism to deflect it, that brings you back to the now, the truth.

  • Just read what I posted on my blog today, and you’ll see why I realy want and need to read this book.

  • MarJean says:

    I would love the book…….mainly because I deserve that chocolate. I have had a Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad, Maybe OK Week.
    Thanks,
    mjdavis@scinternet.net

  • Heaven knows I could use all the help I can get. I use every excuse in the book and beat myself up too! I’m stuck in neutral – maybe this will book will help get me started.

  • Wendy M. says:

    I would really like to win this book. I’ve been struggling with excuses galore lately and I’m fighting really hard to change my way of thinking.

  • Julie Trevor says:

    If there are 220 decisions about food made in a day, I can only imagine the number of related inner voice messages that drive those decisions. Good grief :-).
    Hoping to not only win the book but help myself identify some of those inner voice & learn strategies to overcome what is often self-defeating.
    Julie

  • Darla VanWinkle says:

    I would love this book because I do so well for a few weeks, then I too get derailed and I know I find ways to “justify” it…(and in case you need it here, Darlavanwinkle@hotmail.com)

  • Lisa A says:

    I would love another tool bc the ones I have aren’t working anymore…the excuses are constant…the self-sabotaging constant … the self-loathing growing. I’m not so sure that a book will “fix” what’s going on, but every little bit helps, right!! What I really want is to return to GM!! I miss all of you!!
    Lisa

  • Kathy Harris says:

    It sounds like a book that I should read. It might give me some insight as to why I do the things I do. And maybe find a way to change.

  • Laura T says:

    This book sounds like a great read to help me stay on track. We all are continually bombarded with external detractors and temptations. I need a little help in boosting my internal self in feeling confident that I am strong and can “stay the course”.

  • Deborah says:

    If I haven’t missed to cut-off I’ve love to enter. I’m all about the ‘I deserve’ mentality!

    Deb

  • Deborah says:

    Not sure if my previous comment was uploaded….

    If I’m not too late, I’d love to win this book!

  • Lisa says:

    Thank you everyone for entering the drawing. Via random number generator, we have a winner. Congratulations to Nicole D! Stay tuned for other opportunities like this on our blog!

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