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August 08, 2003 - Image 63

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2003-08-08

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

'You have to say
I'm pretty,
vo(i .re my
fitrcs, to Help

tested ideas with examples in

The Way to Eat: A Six-Step
Path to Lifelong Weight
Control (Sourcebooks; $22).
Katz's interest in healthy
living through the right com-
bination of food and exercise
is not without personal expe-
rience. Overweight at age 13,
Your Daughter
he decided to take responsi-
bility for his health and
Learn to Love Her
explored diet approaches.
Body and Herself
That he has succeeded
Stephanie Pierson and Phyliss Cohen:
be shown in the
"There are so many kids focused on body
issue of Men's
image that their relationship toward food
Mills COREN.,csw
has become corrupted," says Cohen.
will have text and pictures
of him to verify that he
practices what he recommends.
book to help parents through these troubling situa-
"We know what a healthy diet is," says Katz, who
tions. Teamed up with therapist Phyllis Cohen,
periodically addresses the issues through lectures at
Pierson came up with You Have to Say I'm Pretty,
Mott's Children's Hospital in Ann Arbor. "My book is
You're My Mother (Simon & Schuster; $23).
Besides offering personal stories to ground the text about addressing the challenges of modern life and
relating that to diet."
in reality, the book is supplemented with sugges-
Katz, who has written textbooks on nutrition, says
tions, steps and strategies that fall into chapters
exploring the essence of body image, impact of fami- the book ultimately covers all the questions he has
been asked by patients confronting eating issues as it
ly relationships, intervention and parental approach-
explains the evidence supporting the value of concen-
es — among other relevant subjects.
trating on whole grains, fruits and vegetables.
For example, the chapter entitled "Teenage Girls,
"Eating properly must become a way of life because
the Care and Feeding Of" provides a list of "red
the way we eat influences everything we do," says
flags" that tell mothers when they must seek help.
Katz, who doesn't keep kosher but proposes a diet that
"I did not treat Stephanie's daughter, but when
is not incompatible with kosher homes.
Stephanie set out to write a book about body image,
"It also must have social connections because food
she came to me as an expert," explains Cohen, a
involves culture."
psychotherapist who has a full-time private practice
The six-step plan involves analyzing oneself, accept-
in New York City.
ing change, controlling cravings, distinguishing diet
"She didn't think of having a co-author when she
facts from folklore, understanding the effects of mood
started, but she felt that what I had to say was most
on food choices and tackling temptations.
practical and asked that we work together."
Katz, who relates anecdotes about his own family as
Cohen, raised with Jewish traditions, doesn't believe
he explains the need to establish proper eating habits,
there is anything in the Jewish culture that makes
covers a vast range of information, including the histo-
adolescents particularly vulnerable to eating disorders.
ry of the human experience and how that influences
"Jewish traditions often focus on food and connect
eating, the effects of food on body chemistry and what
food and family," says Cohen, who has happy memo-
to look for on food nutrition labels.
ries of family Shabbat dinners while growing up.
While he doesn't believe in surgical approaches
"That's a healthy, nurturing and positive connection.
"The Jewish community is really no different from to controlling weight for quick fixes or cosmetic
outcomes, he does think
the larger community when it comes to
they ought to be considered
issues of body image and eating. We're
In Coopttation wit h the Ameiltah DielAtic Atociatjon
part of a body-conscious society."
BATTLE on page 64
While addressing common concerns,
Cohen cautions that parents dealing
with weight problems in their children
must adapt suggestions to the individ-
ual at risk.
"These are ideas to work with," she
says. "Perspective is important. There
are so many kids focused on body
image that their relationship toward
food has become corrupted, and being
able to talk about that is important."

Healthy Eating

Dr. David Katz of the Yale University
School of Medicine takes a scientific
approach to healthy eating and explains


'foie School o! Medicine,


Dr. David Katz:
"Eating properly must
become a way of life."

Sweet Tooth

The memoir "Candy
and Me: (Al,ove Story)"
chronicles the sugary
obsessions of author
Hilary Lifiin.

rom candy corn through Junior
Mina, Lemonheacls, marshmallow
eggs and myriad other confections,
Hilary Liftin's Candy and Me: (A Love Story

(Free Press; $22)
recounts memo-
ries defined by
her compulsive
sweet tooth.
As'a third-grad-
er, Liftin finds
herself addicted
to sugar, which
she secretly con-
sumes in exces-
sive amounts.
As the memoir
of the shy,
"uncool" girl
growing up in
Maryland contii-i- Confection compulsion:
ues, we follow- her "There's always another
box ofiunior Mints."
through high
school and col-
lege; her obsession becomes a reverie on spe-
cific candies as well as a retrospective of her
loves and relationships.
Candy and Me is a chronicle of a social
and sexual corning-of-age, of relationships
romantic and platonic, of adolescent desire
to be pretty and popular — and of a search
for passion and fulfillment.
For Liftin, who grew up a painfully self-
conscious young girl, candy evokes strong
idiosyncratic associations.
The experiences she recounts via stories of
candy range from falling in love with a camp
counselor to hearing about the inurder of a
childhood friend.
While the author seems unable to reflect
deeply on these moments in her life -- there
is a schoolgirl quality to the narration —
Liftin's straightforward observations occa.-
sionally have a self-deprecating wittiness that
verges on poignancy.
"By the time I got to college," she writes,
"I still wouldn't eat even the most basic
fruits. I had never had a grape, I boasted,
but I loved the taste of purple."
--- Audrey Becker

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