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FEAR Made You Fat and Not Calories

Just 4 Steps to End the Obesity Epidemic

Clarion Review (4 Stars)

New weight-loss books appear on the market as quickly as those extra pounds return after a diet. While many people have a need, and a desire, to lose weight, statistics suggest that even if they succeed in reducing, they might find it extremely challenging to keep the pounds off. According to Ronald Fisher and Caryn Wichmann, the answer may not be how much one eats, but rather in what one eats. The methods of these naturopathic physicians and nutritionists have produced results at their Perpetual Wellbeing clinic in Brisbane, Australia. Their research and experience have led them to share their formula in this book.

The word “FEAR” in the title actually represents the acronym FEAR: Fructose in everything, Exercise reduction, Artificial trans fats, and Reduced key nutrients. It may be that no argument surrounding any of these topics breaks new ground. However, it is useful to have this information compiled in one volume, and presented with such directness.

Some authors of weight-loss books are coy in their presentation, forcing the reader to wade through air-popped content to get to the heart of the matter. Not so here. Fisher and Wichmann begin each chapter with a clear statement of the main point to be learned from the information presented. They then launch into an informed explanation of the current research on each topic. Besides being clear and to the point, their findings are copiously documented.

The authors do not simply tell readers how they may have gone wrong, but they also list achievable strategies for overcoming each poor lifestyle choice. The final chapters deal with ways of reversing adverse conditions that may have resulted from those bad choices. They offer advice on how to gain control of one’s life, and they suggest taking a stand against “commercial organizations that are currently inflicting FEAR on consumers.”

One may wonder why such a straightforward book should be so deceptively titled. Readers may be surprised or disappointed to discover that FEAR Made You Fat & Not Calories contains almost no information about the psychology of weight gain. It seems to force the authors to fit all of their data and recommendations into an awkward formula. For example, groundbreaking information on the role of body fat as a defense mechanism against toxins is included almost as an afterthought in the final chapters. By obscuring information some readers might find quite helpful, Fisher and Wichmann are perhaps limiting their audience.

Although it stops short of sparking a new weight-loss revolution, this is still an informative and well-written text. Readers will appreciate the clear presentation of current weight-loss research and the suggested strategies for overcoming poor lifestyle choices.

Marilyn Berry