Excerpt: Bethenny Frankel's 'Naturally Thin'

Diet talk is common at social events, and people talk as if they were authorities on whatever their latest plan is -- but at the next party, you find out that they are off the wagon or are pushing something else. How many times have people told you they are "starting a new diet tomorrow"? Or maybe you are the one who has been saying this to other people.

How many of those people have lost a lot of weight and kept it off for good?

The simple fact is that you don't function normally if you constantly have to measure, count, restrict, and obsess over food. You feel punished, deprived, even angry. I know I did. Eventually, life intervenes, and you no longer have time or patience for all that nonsense. Then you give up and tell yourself, "Well, I might as well just eat the whole double cheese pizza because dieting is just too hard."

Of course it's hard. It's not natural to eat like that, and it's not healthy, either -- not physically, not mentally. If you have to rely on a regimen, a menu, strict rules, or even a book to tell you what to do and what to eat, you aren't going to stick with it. You don't need something to control your life. You just need some tools that will help you regain control. After all, it's your body. You can change it if you want to change it.

Notice that I don't say you are going to need willpower. I say control because that's exactly what I mean. You are your own person. You are in control of what you do. You have the power. It's your body, your life, your mind, your food. You have control over what you choose to do and how you choose to act. The problem with diets is that they give you the idea that someone else is controlling you: a famous guy tells a famous girl what to eat; or a diet plan somebody wrote for you tells you how many cups of this and how many tablespoons of that you can eat.

Frankly, this lets you off the hook. If you are on a diet, the diet controls you, so when things go wrong, you can blame the diet. If you are on a diet, you don't have to take responsibility for your own life. The diet tells you what to do, and if it doesn't work, you hate the diet; the diet failed; you are the victim. Even as you feel guilty and blame yourself for your inner weakness, deep down, you don't feel that you've ever been the one at the steering wheel. The diet has been driving. You're just along for the ride. And that's no way to live your life.

Take back the wheel and start driving yourself through life again. Sure, taking back your life can be a challenge, but getting naturally thin is easier than you think. This book is about you and the ways you can learn to deal, face-to-face, with food again, rather than letting food deal with you.

More about Me

I wouldn't describe my childhood as typical, but I would describe it as challenging. I grew up moving from place to place. I was a bicoastal child, going back and forth from New York to Los Angeles until the age of six, then living all over the place. In New York, we lived in Manhattan, Forest Hills, Rockville Centre, Old Westbury, and Locust Valley. We also lived in Boston, Florida, and Los Angeles. I went to thirteen different schools. I had no stability whatsoever, no structure, no regular meals, and nothing to instill a healthy attitude about food. I ate almost all my meals in restaurants.

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