Whole Life Magazine

October/November 2014

Issue link: http://digital.copcomm.com/i/390790

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Page 29 of 43

art & soul BOOKS Assertiveness for Earth Angels How to Be Loving Instead of "Too Nice" Alfonso de Rose I n his breezy Make Love with Food and Lose Weight, Alfon- so de Rose is a charming relationship counselor helping his readers rethink their relationship with food. Through engag- ing exercises, anecdotes and hypotheticals (and in striking, Ital- ian-accented English prose), he credits our various unhealthy relationships with food to stress, low self-esteem arising from failed diets, and not measuring up to cultural standards of beauty. While those ideas are common to many diet books, De Rose argues that when you get a handle on what makes you tick, you will shift your paradigm and drop weight. One of the more clever devices De Rose suggests to help uncover specifi c triggers for poor eating habits is his catego- rizations of people with weight problems. They bear a resem- blance to the cliques we remember from high school: "Cuties" are self-absorbed and pre-occupied with their looks; "couch- ies" unconsciously eat their way into oblivion; "gymies" try to atone for their sins through regular workouts; and holies view their food intake and health concerns with a well-defi ned sense of moderation. Cliques push our but- tons at any age, and De Rose knows it. Once you decide where you fi t in (and it could be more than one clique) and read on, De Rose argues that you become your own inner guru, and better equipped to take control of your interactions with food. The outcome is a balanced relationship, rather than one of uncontrolled passion. Eating becomes a meditation, food is truly savored, and we learn to love it for the right reasons. (Verona Publishing) —Elyse Glickman Doreen Virtue D oreen Virtue writes on the topic of assertiveness in lovingly straightforward language that speaks directly to her readers, offering insightful observations on many relevant topics, from boundaries, people pleasing and toxic relationships, to letting go of guilt and worry. For anyone who wants to learn how to use innate empathy in a more effective way and eliminate behaviors that are enabling and self- defeating, this is a great read. However, while Virtue's advice is spot on, it feels incomplete, as if she is showing us the doorway but doesn't give us the key to implement it in a practical way. For example, how does one get the courage to never be afraid, or to not care if egocentric people don't like you? Her style of focusing on the negatives to move into the positives at times feels disempowering, and her perspective on the ego as the enemy seems old paradigm, but her willingness to delve into the roots of why earth angels engage in certain behaviors is validating for many and distinguishes her work from other self-help books on the market. (Hay House) —Erica Lynn Make Love with Food and Lose Weight It's Your Birthright to Be Thin 30 wholelifetimesmagazine.com

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