I’ll admit it, the main reason I signed up to read and review Why Women Need Fat by Dr. William D. Lassek and Dr. Steven J.C. Gaulin, my fifth BlogHer Book Club selection, was because of a line in a summary about it which said something about “why those last five pounds seem impossible to lose.” I think I was contemplating resolutions for 2012 at the time and knew one was to try to work on shedding those “last five pounds” in the New Year. I wanted to know their “secret” and got a lot more then I bargained for…
I didn’t pay much attention to the subtitle: How “Healthy” Food Makes Us Gain Excess Weight and the Surprising Solution to Losing It Forever. Had I realized what I was getting myself into, I probably would have taken a pass. However this is not because I didn’t enjoy or learn a lot from reading this book. It was very interesting and informative. I have just been purposely avoiding books, movies (such as Food Inc.) and anything else that could inform me about the details of why my family and my diet is unhealthy. I wasn’t ready.
I knew if and when I were to take the time to find out what is wrong with what typical Americans, like my family, eat on a regular basis, that I would then have to make some serious changes to our grocery shopping, meal planning and consumption. I had a vague idea about some of the “bad things” that we have been eating before reading Why Women Need Fat. Now I know the truth. Ready or not, the Benson family will be making some adjustments to what we buy and eat in the near future. In fact I already made my first post-Why Women Need Fat trip to our neighborhood/family owned grocery store and was very impressed how well I was able to do following many of the recommendations the authors suggest in this book.
Dr. Lassek and Dr. Gaulin take about two-thirds of Why Women Need Fat to give readers background and make their very thorough case for why and how our American food processing and eating habits have gotten so out of whack over the past 40 years. Then they use the final third of the book to give practical suggestions as to how to shop for and introduce healthier alternatives into our meals. The authors also break down their theories and understanding of the most effective ways for us to reach our “natural and healthy weight,” primarily without having to follow any formal weight loss diet.
There is a lot of comparison in this book of American food processing and eating routines versus Europeans, Asians and others around the World. They highlight what many of our overseas neighbors are doing better when it comes to healthy eating and how our country went astray. I also found the discussion of how our food choices and eating habits impact our fertility, ability to carry and nurse babies and then lose and/or gain postpartum weight fascinating.
I recommend this book, but caution if you choose to read it: be prepared to makes some changes to your own diet or at least know that you will not look at a food label or many of the things you eat in the same way ever again (especially if you currently buy and consume a lot of processed foods made with vegetable and/or soybean oil). Please join our discussion over on the BlogHer Book Club page where you can share your thoughts and find out what others are saying about Why Women Need Fat.
If you have already read Why Women Need Fat or decide to check it out in the future, I would love to know what you think of it.
Disclaimer: I received a free e-copy of this book to read for this review and to participate in the related BlogHer Book Club discussion. However, I was in no way encouraged to write a positive or negative review about Why Women Need Fat.