Eating Mindfully for Teens


By Susan Albers, PysD

Reviewed by Kristen Whittington, MS in Nutrition, Dietetic Intern


Eating Mindfully for Teens is not a workbook I would invest in. While the intention of the workbook is to be more mindful around food, there are undertones of diet culture that have potential to make clients feel shame. Additionally, the workbook encourages dieting/disordered type behaviors. For example, for cravings the workbook recommends substitutions for the food you may be craving, such as if you aren’t sure you are craving a milkshake, have a smoothie instead. A better option would be to get the Intuitive Eating Workbook for Teens, by Elyse Resch, which takes a more “light and curious” approach to exploring the client’s relationship to food.

I would not recommend this entire workbook for any teen with an ED (or any teen in general, for that matter). There are a few good activities in it, but overall it has a ton of triggering language. It doesn’t really teach how to improve the relationship with food at all. My general impression is that it comes more from a guilt/shame and “don’t eat that” perspective than a compassionate all foods fit perspective.

Binge Eating Disorder- The Journey to Recovery and Beyond

By Amy Pershing, LMSW, ACSW and Chevese Turner, founder of Bing Eating Disorder Association

Reviewed for IFEED by Janice Baker, MBA, RDN, CDE, CNSC, BC-ADM

For insights and valuable perspective into binge eating disorders, I can’t recommend this book highly enough.  Working with patients for nearly 40 years with a variety of medical and psychosocial challenges, the clarity, practicality, support as well as science/medical references in this book are relevant to nutrition therapy and eating disorder practice in almost every setting I have worked in.

Early in my career, the promotion of numerous weight management approaches started to become notably magnified and highly lucrative. However, the under-the- radar collateral damage was rarely of topic of discussion in professional education. Seeing approaches to weight management in my community by inpatient management, witnessing tragic outcomes, including chronic and severe disabilities, bariatric surgery pre/post op patients, as well as diabetes management I strongly support this book as not only a resource for practicing RDNs but highly recommend as required reading in undergraduate coursework for nutrition science, exercise science, nursing and related degrees. The credentials and well described lived experiences of the authors, support my opinion of this book as a highly recommended resource, as the insightful and well researched information included are consistent with evidence-based science. As a CNSC RDN for several years, this is a particularly critical aspect of any recommended resource.

The book was organized well, and I especially appreciated the bibliography citations at the end of each chapter.  Appendix A, “Online Resources for Community Building” is also an excellent and helpful reference for providing further support to our patients and clients.

I highly recommend this book for both treatment providers and patients.  As an RDN for many years, I’ve had to seek out education, resources to recommend and support to help counter the damaging and condescending messages my patients have continuously received as part of our culture. Reading this book has greatly helped me improve my skills and provided me greater insights into the struggles that so many have, no matter what age or gender.


By IFEDD Member Christy Harrison, MPH, RD

Reviewed for IFEDD by Robyn Goldberg


Anti-Diet is a book written by Christy Harrison, MPH, RD.  Christy has written a fantastic book that is well referenced and researched on everything that a person needs to know about diet culture, the problems with it and how to challenge it.  This book is useful for both professionals in their practice and the general public in their personal life.

In Anti-Diet, Christy has many of our peers who work from a weight inclusive approach share their story regarding how they became “anti-diet” after their own journey’s through diet culture.  She provides information that helps a person reflect on their own belief system and what it will take to remove oneself from diet culture with having the courage to take a different stance.

This is book is a must read for all clinicians who practice in any discipline as Christy is honest about what it will take to approach food, their body and recovery differently. She describes the current trends about “wellness” and the other names that are used as it is supposed to represent the “picture of health”.  Christy is straight forward about all the terms synonymous with the “healthism” and how they all avoid the facts that our psychological well-being is being impacted by this.

I really appreciate Christy’s picture describing diet culture, the wellness diet and food activism with describing them all in addition to offering clues for identifying terms that are code names for a diet.

Her chapter titles are catchy as chapter after chapter Christy backs her statements about how diet culture steals our time, money, well being and happiness and what a person’s life can be like without diet culture. Every chapter has various peers woven into it as the example fit precisely like a key fitting into a lock.

I love that Christy not only has guidelines for health care providers to prevent weight stigma and disordered eating as she has many wonderful references listed at the back of the book. She wraps up the book with discussing the importance of having a community or tribe that is supportive who can see the “Life Thief” and support the individual to remove themselves from body negativity, food shaming and unrealistic cultural ideals.


Spiritual Approaches in the Treatment of Women with Eating Disorders, by P.Scott Richards, Ph.D., Randy K. Hardman, Ph.D., Michael E. Berrett, Ph.D.

Reviewed by Garalynne Binford

Spiritual Approaches in the Treatment of Women with Eating Disorders was written by clinicians, all trained in psychology, at the Center For Change eating disorder treatment center in Utah.  The writing is aimed primarily at experienced mental health practitioners working in the eating disorders field, with the hope that spiritual approaches will be incorporated and researched more in eating disorder treatment settings. Although I am a religious person, I have not had significant experience with spiritual approaches in eating disorder treatment. This book painted a clear picture of how the interplay between spiritual beliefs and eating disorders can be indispensable to recovery. I believe that if I were recovering from an eating disorder, I would want to have spirituality incorporated in my treatment.

The book was organized well, beginning with an introduction, theory and supporting research, moving into outlining a theistic spiritual framework, and then specifically and comprehensively describing the spiritually-informed treatment used at Center for Change.  A brief basic introduction to eating disorders is provided, including the multi-disciplinary team (including a dietitian) in treatment, and then the majority of the book assumes a level of familiarity with eating disorder treatment. The primary focus is, as one would expect, on incorporating spiritual approaches into psychological therapy, with a strong emphasis on evidence and research. The authors review existing research as well as extensive suggestions for future research.  Two information-packed chapters report data from the authors’ own outcome study, which appeared well-designed.

Although there was very little information related to food or eating, per se, lots of practical suggestions for treatment were discussed.  Two concepts particularly struck me as useful.  One concept was the heart, or core spiritual self.  Getting patients to tune in with their heart can help them make decisions that are most congruent with their spiritual beliefs.  Another concept was miracles.  Asking patients to actively look for (and expect) miracles in their lives can help patients have a more tangible experience of their spirituality.  The last section, Case Reports and Patient Perspectives, was especially meaningful to me.  The authors provided several detailed accounts of spirituality influencing (and largely accounting for) their own patients’ recovery in a wide variety of circumstances, including results of qualitative studies that were performed. The recovered patients’ own accounts of the role of spirituality in their recoveries were hugely inspirational.

I would definitely recommend Spiritual Approaches in the Treatment of Women with Eating Disorders to anyone offering psychological therapy in eating disorders, and certainly to anyone with an interest in spirituality or religion.  Although many eating disorder dietitians will find the content not readily applicable to their work, it will provide reassurance that helping patients nourish themselves can be part of those patients’ spiritual journey. When I had finished reading this book, I found myself wanting to read a book on the same topic directed toward patients.  It would be lovely to see something like that in the future.

Spiritual Approaches in the Treatment of Eating Disorders is available for $59.95 through Gurze Books at

Love Me, Feed Me: The Adoptive Parent’s Guide to Ending the Worry about Weight, Picky Eating, Power Struggles and More, by Katja Rowell, MD

Published 2012 by Family Feeding Dynamics LLC, ISBN #0615691315

Reviewed by Kathryn Zavodni, MPH, RD, LDN

Love Me, Feed Me is a comprehensive guide to solving childhood feeding struggles and weight concerns. Although written specifically for foster and adoptive parents, Love Me, Feed Me is relevant and beneficial for any type of caregiver dealing with feeding frustrations. Elaborating on Ellyn Satter’s “Division of Responsibility,” Love Me, Feed Mepresents the “Trust Model” of child feeding and examples to help with its implementation. The basic premise: given appropriate structure and a pressure-free environment, children can learn to eat competently and self-regulate their intake. Simply put, adults are guided to prioritize how children eat over what they eat. Additional focus is given to specific concerns often observed among foster and adopted children, such as special needs, sensory issues, food obsession, and selective eating.

Eating disorder dietitians already appreciate the critical importance of the “how” of eating, so although Love Me, Feed Me is not about eating disorders, per se, it can reinforce and support our teachings and recommendations in the minds of the parents of our youngest patients.  It is also an invaluable reference for new dietitians and any provider who works with children and parents (foster, adoptive, biological, or any combination thereof) with feeding or weight concerns.

The author, Katja Rowell, MD, is a primary care physician turned childhood feeding specialist. In her medical practice, she grew frustrated with the failure of conventional medical advice to help individuals and families correct problems (real or perceived) with eating and weight concerns. She ultimately left her medical practice to focus her attention on helping families establish healthy feeding relationships.

Dr. Rowell’s casual, conversational writing style and her message of encouragement and validation make this an easy cover-to-cover read. The reader in a hurry can use the comprehensive index to find the most pertinent and useful information. Love Me, Feed Me also provides a wealth of information in appendices, for example Medical Issues That Can Affect Feeding; Tips for Dealing with Health Care Providers; and Snack and Meal Ideas.

This book is a must-read for foster and adoptive parents at any stage along the parenting journey. It will also be immensely useful for any parent struggling with a child’s feeding or weight and dietitians looking for another voice that supports the goal of developing internal guidance and “competent” eaters.

Love Me, Feed Me is available in paperback for $17.95 here:

The Kindle version is available for $9.99 here:

The Emotional Eater’s Repair Manual: A Practical Mind-Body-Spirit Guide for Putting an End to Overeating and Dieting

Written byJulie M. Simon, MA, MBA, LMFT

Reviewed by Meagan Rothschild

Don’t let the title fool you. The Emotional Eater’s Repair Manual is for a population much broader than strictly emotional eaters. While it is a must read for anyone struggling with overeating, it is beneficial for any reader with an interest in developing a healthy lifestyle through mind, body and spiritual balance.  This book outlines a program that would be a helpful strategy in the toolkit of any Eating Disorder Dietitian, particularly those looking to enhance their counseling approaches and techniques.

Julie Simon, MA, MBA, LMFT has developed a realistic approach to overcoming the underlying causes of imbalanced eating based on her Twelve Week Eating Recovery Program. Her extensive experience is evident as she follows her principles and practices with patient dialogue, clearly demonstrating the various situations in which each skill would be useful in practice.

The Emotional Eater’s Repair Manual “presents five self-care skills, five body-balancing principles, and five soul-care practices that can end overeating and dieting forever.” The author suggests reading and practicing each principle as it applies to the reader’s individual interests, something that I greatly appreciated about this book. It is broken up into three parts as follows, Part 1: Mastering Self-Care Skills, Part 2: Tuning Up Biochemistry, and Part 3: Filling Up Spiritual Reserves. I found myself bookmarking nearly every page in the self-care skills chapter, but skimmed over the nutrition and spiritual parts as they were not applicable to my current needs.

Chapter 8, Principle 1 is easily one of the most important parts of the book from an emotional eating recovery standpoint. It addresses hunger and fullness cues and suggests charting physical hunger versus emotional hunger via fullness scales and daily eating logs. Chapter 9, Principle 2 offers a wealth of nutrition knowledge, but is heavily based on vegetarianism. While the book does not force the reader into following a specific diet, Simon’s nutrition suggestions in this chapter may not be appropriate for all eating disorder patients, especially those with a tendency to restrict. That being said, she does provide general nutrition information that would be very helpful for a reader seeking basic nutrition knowledge. Overall, I agree with her philosophy of providing self-care skills and sound nutrition practices, not a quick-fix diet, to develop a healthy lifestyle void of emotional eating.

Print version $11.53 through Amazon:

Kindle version $10.33 through Amazon: