The End of Overeating: Taking Control of the Insatiable American Appetite
Uncover the truth behind our food addiction - and learn how to break the cycle
Many of us find ourselves powerless in front of a bag of crisps, a packet of biscuits, the last slice of pizza. Why is it that we simply can't say no?
In The End of Overeating David Kessler, the man who took on the tobacco industry, exposes how modern food manufacturers have hijacked the brains o...more
It sells itself as being a look inside the food industry and food culture, as well as the science of appetite and overeating, but most of the book focuses simply on the fact that popular restaurants and snack food these days layer fat, sugar, or salt together.
The author also has this idea that being overweight is pretty much solely a result of something he calls hypereating-- just eating snacks rep ...more
FYI, here's every single bit of real material in the book:
1. If you eat foods containing lots of salt, fat and sugar ...more
It starts off promising: foods that have a lot of sugar, fat, and salt make us want to keep eating, especially foods with even more sugar, fat, and salt. To add to this fun, some people are wired to overeat while others are able to stop. If you're wired to overeat, it doesn't matter if you're overweight or not - some people have figured out how to compensate and stay at a healthy weight while others are not able to do so and become obese.
And then Kessler ...more
I remember Dr, Kessler’s name from his stints in the administrations of George the Elder Bush and Bill Clinton. After leaving the US Food and Drug Administration, I’m not sure I knew what he was doing or where. In fact, he was researching, living, and writing this book, The End of Overeating.
Since I know that I’m going to use words that can be construed as puns, bon mots, and perhaps even as double entendres, let me apologize to one and all. This is a serious subject that deserves serious consid ...more
Ever since I have been going through the Battle of the Bulge I have literally struggled to lose weight. I soon realized that the biggest challenges I had was not exercise. Rather my inability to stay away from Food. The Aroma of Cinnabon, the thought of a Mouth Watering entre from Pizza Hut, the Steaming Delicious Burgers from Burger King and the Tender Chicken of KFC would throw my will-power and self-control out of the windo ...more
The book begins strong, with the author's personal stories and observations, but also from case studies, and interviews with restaurant industry professionals. The holy trinity of the regular American diet - sugar, salt, and fat - are covered extensively. The author h ...more
Kessler, a former FDA chief best known for his anti-tobacco efforts, struggled for most of his life with a need to eat more that was good for him, a need he shares with an increasing p ...more
For a much better treatment of the horrific flaws in the american diet and the malevolence of the food industry read Eric Schlosser's Fast Food Nation and Micheal Pollan's In Defens ...more
Now, I just explained in two sentences what it took the author two sections, 26 chapters, and 140 pages to say.
Part 3 introduced the concept of conditioned hypereati ...more
My appreciation of this book varied depending on the section, but taken as a whole it has a lot of value.
The first part, "Sugar, Fat, Salt" is five-star material. Those of you who don't normally read nonfiction should at least read this section. It explains the brain science showing why "hyperpalatable" foods are irresistible to many people, and how these foods lead to uncontrolled eating. Fascinating stuff ...more
And that’s the primary problem I had with this book. I listened to it as an audiobook, which can be quite a different experience, so I’ll disclose that to begin with. The book focus ...more
It was written at what I would describe as magazine level, (although about the last quarter is detailed end notes that I hadn't realized were there, or I might have been reading them).
The book does an excellent breakdown of how the restaurant industry tries to hyper-stimulate appetite and how for some people willpower j ...more
No real explanation for individual differences in this phenomenon, gives short shrift to relevance of exercise in weight maintenance/reduction, and advocates habit reversal [one of his go-to interview sources in the behavior change section is a researcher who mainly focuses on trichotillom ...more
It's extremely detailed, and provides tons of references to scientific research. There are a few places where it gets a bit too detailed, but overall I really enjoyed the book. The author outlines how restaurants and the food industry have capitalized on our biological urges for combinations of ...more
In general, he seems to advocate (and these are my words and not his) something like a South Beach diet - lean proteins, whole grains, fruits and veg. At times it seems Kessler doth protest too much ...more
You're fat because you eat too much high-calorie food, and you keep doing it because you've formed a bad habit of it. Yes, but now I've given this syndrome the name "conditioned hypereating!" Oh, and the remedy for it is to stop eating those foods and retrain yourself to quit thinking about them all the time. See, I've found a treatment for the syndrome! And just in case you're in doubt about my numerous leaps over the normal steps of log ...more
The book changed how I look at food and myself. As a former FDA commissioner and a doctor Kessler was well-placed to connect with powerful individuals in the food industry as well as scientists and he ...more
Fantastic book! It delves into the problem of "conditioned hypereating" (or food addiction) - why does it exist, how does it happen, how the food industry plays to it, and what we can do to combat it. There were some slow, science-dense spots that made the book a bit more challenging to go through, but the last few chapters were superb. I love Kessler's plan for changing your eating patterns - it gives you basic rules, but leaves most of the big decisions up to ...more
David Aaron Kessler is an American pediatrician, lawyer, author, and administrator (both academic and governmental). He was the Commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) from November 8, 1990 to February 28, 1997, and ...more
Share This Book
Because this kind of food disappears down our throats so quickly after the first bite, it readily overrides the body's signals that should tell us "I'm full.”