Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Ravenous: A Food Lover's Journey from Obsession to Freedom” as Want to Read:
Ravenous: A Food Lover's Journey from Obsession to Freedom
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Ravenous: A Food Lover's Journey from Obsession to Freedom

3.01 of 5 stars 3.01  ·  rating details  ·  279 ratings  ·  68 reviews
What should I eat? How much should I eat? What does it mean to be nourished? How can I, a food lover and lifelong overeater, learn to be satisfied? These are the questions Dayna Macy asks in her debut memoir, Ravenous. Like many of us, Macy has had a complicated relationship with food. In order to transform this relationship, Macy embarks on a year-long journey to uncover ...more
ebook, 0 pages
Published February 1st 2011 by Hay House, Inc. (first published December 23rd 2010)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Ravenous, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Ravenous

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 600)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Someone (I don't remember who, thanks to whomever it was!) recommended this book to me and I grabbed a copy of it. I will admit I was a bit hesitant. I read half of Eat Pray Love, which it kind of sounded like. I really didn't like that book, at all, not one bit.

This was similar, for sure, but also a little more realistic for the rest of us in the world that cannot take a year off and go off to points unknown. The author visits places she can drive to, during her off times at work or on the week
Mar 27, 2011 Tamsen rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Tamsen by: Renea
"Why are you in this body? What does your body have to teach you?"

These questions that Dayna asks herself stood out to me. I like to think that, as humans, we are put in our lives specifically to work on things. You are the person you are with the challenges you face for a reason. Your soul chose your life to grow spiritually. That could be the wrong answer to why we're here, but it's what I like to think about my life at least. I never thought that perhaps my spirit could choose the shell of my
Mary Chrapliwy
This book is not just about hunger and longing for food, it far more a spiritual journey through where food comes from (from small yet bountiful gardens and farms, the diary farms, straight through to cattle ranching and slaughtering) and how one should have a reverence for that food. Macy leaves no stone unturned in this story of her study of all forms of food and where it all comes from and the creation of fresh food from the ingredients she explores. Near the end she discusses making her own ...more
Dull, no insight, author doesn't seem to make much meaningful change in her emotional state. She ends up going on a diet (but doesn't call it one) in order to lose weight and feel better about her body--which is probably the most mainstream and harmful thing you can do when you have emotional eating and body image problems.

Basic premise of the book: A privileged, fat white woman feels that she has had lifelong emotional eating issues. She is now at the largest size she's ever been and decides to
Eszter Hinchliffe
Another experiment on my new Kindle. Really interesting book,not just the author's need to find out the root cause of her overeating, but really interesting chapters about different foods, different chefs, very Northern California Tree Hugger type, but enjoyable reading. Also, some good recipes
Pamela (slytherpuff)
Nov 30, 2011 Pamela (slytherpuff) rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Over-eaters who don't want to be
See more of my reviews at Bettering Me Up.

Other reviewers have done a fine job of giving an account of the novel, so I'll talk about how this book affected me.

Like the author, I have struggled with obsessive eating my whole life and wondered "why?"

(view spoiler)
While I don't agree with Macy's spiritual philosophy, I thought she had some really interesting and apt things to say about food. I can understand why someone who's never had an issue with weight or food could find this book tedious and even boring. But as someone who has struggled with weight and self-image my entire life, I found some good bits of truth in this book.

I loved the way she described food. She used words that I would never have imagined could describe food. She made me more aware o
Food can be a lot of things. Delicious. Nourishing. Yummy. But food can be much more than that. It can be protection, comfort, pleasure, and love. Like in Dayna Macy's case.
With her memoir Ravenous: A Food Lover's Journey From Obsession To Freedom she offers a downright honest look into what food meant and means to her, from early childhood up to the present. Admittedly this book wasn't quite what I expected it to be, starting off with a praise to different foods, which made me think that “Know
The memoir parts were interesting and engaging. The parts where she visited farms, the slaughterhouse, etc. were fairly informative. I was not fond of the recipes at the end of each chapter and skipped right over them. The "orange" recipe at the end felt forced and trite. Furthermore, the conclusions she came to at the end of her journey were cliche at best and patronizing at worst. For what this book is presented as, it really didn't address the deeper issues of over- and emotional eating or th ...more
The Reading Countess
While someone without issues with food might not find RAVENOUS: A FOOD LOVER'S JOURNEY FROM OBSESSION TO FREEDOM compelling, I did. It spoke to me. I understood Macy's squashing of feelings with food, her memory-infused love affair with traditional meals, and her inability to stop eating even when full.

Dayna Macy is a middle-aged mom who begins to take an honest look at her journey with food. Rather than begin a diet, she wants to go to the core of food and her issues swirling around it. Curiou
The Reading Countess
While someone without issues with food might not find RAVENOUS: A FOOD LOVER'S JOURNEY FROM OBSESSION TO FREEDOM compelling, I did. It spoke to me. I understood Macy's squashing of feelings with food, her memory-infused love affair with traditional meals, and her inability to stop eating even when full.

Dayna Macy is a middle-aged mom who begins to take an honest look at her journey with food. Rather than begin a diet, she wants to go to the core of food and her issues swirling around it. Curiou
Jennifer Shreve
Full disclosure: Dayna and I worked together years ago and recently bumped into one another at a yoga class, which reminded me I needed to review her book! The truth is I would've read this book even if I'd never known the author, because it touches on two areas near and dear to me: food and yoga. In Dayna's case the latter helps her gain insight into and control over the latter. But the book is really about the journey. In an effort to control her impulses and her weight, she delves into the or ...more
This was a free book I found on Pixel of Ink. I wasn't too sure how I would like it since I am not a big fan of memoirs, but this book was really interesting. The author has an unhealthy relationship with food, so she sets out to find the origins of her food obsessions in order to change her relationship with food. She meets farmers, a forager, a chocolatier & many others on her quest to understand where food comes from & what it means to her. She looks into the family traditions surroun ...more
"There's no end to wanting more - until you recognize the abundance you already have. I have to say "no" to some things so I can say "yes" to others. Each decision to consume is a choice to spend my time, energy, and attention. Maybe one key to being happier is not having more, but needing less." - Dayna Macy
Angela Risner

Like me, Dayna Macy has a love of food and is unable to control herself at times around her favorites. She has steadily put on weight and wants to find out why this relationship with food is controlling her.

To do so, she sets off on a journey to find out where her food comes from. She watches cattle being slaughtered at a local farm, which gives her an appreciation for each bite of meat she puts into her mouth. She visits an olive grove and learns how table olives are made.

Macy also travels to h
Food and relating to food obsess me too, so I'm thrilled with this author's journey to delve deeply into her eating history and to seek authentic change of body-mind-spirit in the midst of overwhelming abundance. We also share living in the Bay Area and being longtime members of Full Belly Farm's CSA (Community Supported Agriculture).

I'm planning to employ one of Ms Macy's practices to help explore one of my blocks--the practice of measuring. "'The secret is there is no secret.' A portion is por
I can definitely identify with Macy and the journey she's sharing. It's not a preachy story, but a recounting of the trials and tribulations sustained while dissecting herlove affair with food. It was heartfelt and relatable, sometimes crossing over into bits of cheesiness. But life can be cheesy, can't it?

Macy brings up many personal and societal ideals relating to food, agriculture, and nature that you may or may not agree with, but she poses them in ways that make you think. Everyone is diff
This fabulous book is filled with insight and wisdom as the author Danya Macy attempts to free herself from her obsession with weight and food by learning both more about the food as well as herself.

We follow Macy on her journey and learn about the responsibility of eating meat after visiting an abattoir, about the love of land many farmers have and try to cultivate whether they raise goats or lettuce. This is definitely a journey of love and hope.

For those who are obsessed with weight and food
I like what she had to say about food. I thought it was unfortunate that she missed the fact that all of this does connect to the Lord. But understanding our bodies and not looking merely at weight, bmi or clothing size is an important and that seemed to be a lot of what this book is about.

I started to read and the first few chapters didn't have me sold. I wasn't sure where she was going with the book, or if I was even interested enough to continue along. But I had read some good reviews on spar
Any woman that starts off in the first 20 pages gushing about her love of cambozola has me. I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It lived up to his title.
This is a quick read -- I started and finished it while flying from North Carolina to New York (one stop). It's a quickie inspirational but sometimes uncomfortably honest account of one woman's quest to redefine her relationship with food in a healthier way. There's a bit of New Age-y stuff that didn't do much for me, and some of her ideas verged on silly to me (e.g. visiting a slaughterhouse to understand her lifelong fascination with pork... and by the way, pork does not come from cows). But o ...more
Stephanie Heuerman
While I enjoyed reading parts of this book, it really didn't come together for me. Her journey led her to journaling and measuring her food? That was sort of anticlimatic for me. That, and the editing was terrible. I'd love to know who did the "find all and replace" four with flour. By the end of the book, I almost found that amusing. While I don't happen to agree with all of her spiritual beliefs, I was impressed by her willingness to learn about various foods and the effort that goes into prod ...more
Sep 22, 2011 Jennifer rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Jennifer by: Yoga Journal
Shelves: 2011
I heard about this book in an issue of Yoga Journal. I don't personally identify as having food issues, but I did relate to the authors questions about the role food plays in our lives and our well being. Detachment from food isn't the answer, our bodies demand calories to live. Finding where we can have our cake (or sausage!) and eat it too seems to be the key to the balance.
I did wish the author took a bit more time with the final part of the journey and the last chapter. after the long journ
Elizabeth Huntoon
Such a great take on food and why we eat.
Carol Campbell
This book didn't provide the insight I thought it would. It reminded me of "Eat, Pray, Love" but lacking in depth (not that the aforementioned had much depth). The end was such a let down because she decided that the "secret" to being at peace with her eating and weight issues was portion control and tracking what she ate. Gee - sound familiar? But the book was a tad bit interesting in finding out how certain foods make it from beginning to plate. The slaughterhouse information was insightful in ...more
Like omnivores dilemma.
I got this for free for my Kindle and I have to say a big thumbs down. The idea is interesting, which is why I downloaded it. Even for free there are some books I don't bother with. But after plowing through the whole book, here is her big revelation/solution. A food journal and portion control. Um.... I think weight watchers might have been able to help you with this a while ago. If controlling your portions was easy, everyone would do it and no one would be overweight.
I have struggled with self-image issues, weight issues, and emotional eating, but this book just did not grab me. Even though it was a short and easy read, I just couldn't push past page 60. The writing itself fell flat for me, and to be honest, I expected a lot more substance.

I do think it's an interesting idea to learn more about the foods we obsess over, and although I glossed over the recipes at the end of each chapter, I think it was a cute touch.
Rebecca Rose
The idea behind this book spoke to me. I have an unhealthy relationship with food, as do most Americans. When I read the description I could relate to the author. Her journey isn't something most people can do, she uses a lot of her connections to get her into places that most people could never visit. However, we can learn something from her path. In the end she comes to the most basic of conclusions, the ones most people don't want to accept.
Blah. This book was not at all as insightful or meaningful as the author would want you to believe.

I can't stand people who try to pat themselves on the back for eating "humane" or "organic" animals products. Also, I find it funny that she felt the need to "go to the source" for the cheese and sausage she so dearly loves, but not to see or even research into the slavery, environmental destruction, and racism that goes into her precious chocolate.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 19 20 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Admit One: My Life in Film
  • The Game On! Diet: Kick Your Friend's Butt While Shrinking Your Own
  • Unbillable Hours: A True Story
  • A Dog Named Slugger
  • Two Wars: One Hero's Fight on Two Fronts--Abroad and Within
  • Sex and the River Styx
  • A Narrative of the Life of Mrs. Mary Jemison
  • Gang of One: Memoirs of a Red Guard
  • A Child al Confino: A True Story of Escape in War-Time Italy
  • Organize for a Fresh Start: Embrace Your Next Chapter in Life
  • A Song for Mary: An Irish-American Memory
  • Chop Suey: A Cultural History of Chinese Food in the United States
  • Brains: How They Seem to Work
  • Best Little Stories from the Civil War: More than 100 true stories
  • The Root of Thought: Unlocking Glia--The Brain Cell That Will Help Us Sharpen Our Wits, Heal Injury, and Treat Brain Disease
  • Final Moments: Nurses' Stories about Death and Dying
  • Bridge To Happiness
  • Life From Scratch
Personal Biography
Ravenous: A Food Lover's Journey from Obsession to Freedom tells the story of how I made peace with my appetite and my body. That journey, and the one I traveled to become a writer, both took a while.

I was born in Rockland County, New York. I went to college at Drew University, and then to graduate school at Brown University, where I got my degree in philosophy. I thought I wante
More about Dayna Macy...
Ravenous: A Food Lover's Journey from Obsession to Freedom Savoring the Wine Country

Share This Book