If you've been following my ongoing self-discovery journey to really dig on my body and get healthy and well, you'll know that this hot-to-trot size 18 girl o' awesome does NOT do diet books. I do, however do teach-me-awesome-shit and make-my-life-better books which Eat Less Without Trying to Eat Less most definitely is. It's a game changer of a book. As members o' lady-kind we've had a LOT of conditioning about foods and diets, so to change that way of thinking and to really KNOW and understand that diets don't work, well...that takes work.
This book? Well, this is where that work begins.
Meet the author, Sue Thomason who personally, I think is a super hero for the future o' girl kind.
What is it you do exactly? I teach people how to have a healthy relationship with food, I research into the psychology of overeating, I publish and edit a women’s lifestyle magazine dedicated to body diversity, I’m a body image campaigner and a blogger for the Huffington Post, I’m an author and have just reached Amazon No 1 Bestselling status! All done in my slippers with cats fighting for space on my lap.
[quote style="boxed" float="none"]there's a lot of myth that's accepted as fact about diets and the diet industry and all of these misunderstandings are making the problem worse. [/quote]
You've just written Eat Less without Trying to Eat Less - this book is SO needed - what inspired you to write it? Eat Less Without Trying To Eat Less is just the first in a series of books about the causes of disordered eating. I've been helping people with problems with food since 2005 in the form of an online course called The Food Philosophy. Disordered eating is a complex issue with lots of connected underlying causes and the media and society are being swayed in the wrong direction by big businesses that profit from us not finding out the truth. So there's a lot of myth that's accepted as fact and all of these misunderstandings are making the problem worse. I wrote the book so I can reach a wider audience with the truth.
Eat Less… is just the basics and there are some shocking revelations to come.
It's being hailed as the book EVERY woman should read, how did you discover these secrets? I wish every woman would read it! I've been researching into the causes of overeating and undereating for more than two decades and I have been gifted with an intuitive understanding of the subject and an ability to see the wider picture and so I have a unique and advanced understanding of the subject.
I'm sometimes called arrogant when I state that I know more about eating disorders than most medical experts and I’m not arrogant by nature so at first I was shamed into keeping quiet. But now I know I'm supposed to share this knowledge because I really can help people and maybe go some ways towards changing things for women trapped in disordered eating. Also, I've helped at least three GPs, a surgeon in the US and a counsellor from an eating disorder clinic with their own eating problems!
Why is this your mission? I have no idea. It wasn’t really a choice. It’s the only subject I’ve ever stuck with and I’ve been compelled to learn about it obsessively for most of my life. I did suffer from an eating disorder for years and I went on my first diet at about 10 years old, so it’s probably connected to that. Even though I did suffer myself, though, it doesn’t feel like a mission to sort out my own problem, I’m a raging feminist and it feels more like a desire to make the world better for women. Again, this is a compulsion and not something I choose so I feel a bit odd taking credit for it.
Apart from reading the book, what can we do to address women's obsession with weight and diets? To help yourself, seek out media showing images of body diverse women you can identify with and reject idealised images. Take the latest Nivea advert, for example – change channel when it comes on, write to Nivea or any other company propagating insecurity and tell them your views. You don’t have to stop enjoying make up and fashion, just make your aspirations attainable and realistic – as you are now, not after you’ve lost weight.
To help others, ordinary women and girls can get involved in campaigning. You can join the Endangered Bodies Ditching Dieting campaign group. www.endangeredspecieswomen.org.uk/ditching-dieting-campaign/ Endangered Bodies is a global and local initiative to fight the culture of body anxiety, body hatred and fear that is pervading all parts of our society. Being with a group of like minded women all fighting for the same cause is a huge builder of self confidence and as you get more involved in your passions, appearance becomes more of an entertainment rather than a way to judge your own worth.
As well as being a book writing suprem-o, you're editor of Beautiful magazine - tell us about the magazine and why it's different to other women's magazines on the supermarket shelves... Beautiful is the only body diverse women’s lifestyle magazine in the UK. We use models of all shapes and sizes, but retain glamour and make dressing up fun. We only publish pro-self esteem advertising and where other women’s magazines’ priorities lie with the benefits to their advertisers, our readers are top priority to us. Where other magazines have an underlying message persuading readers that they have to ‘improve’ themselves through weight loss, surgery or exercise, Beautiful has an underlying thread encouraging confidence and self love right now, as you are.
It’s also an interesting and entertaining read .
What do you love most about what you do in the world? I love making a difference to people’s lives whether that’s through the magazine, the Food Philosophy or my books but nothing beats having a major impact on a single life. I’ve recently helped someone to escape quite a serious eating disorder (undereating) and guiding someone who has given up on ever feeling normal again to bring their life back into health and full colour is indescribable. Nothing tops it.
What's your live-by quote/motto? I'm sometimes angry about how women are manipulated and it comes through in my writing. I've been advised to be less opinionated but have found it impossible so my favourite quote is Bill Hicks: “I don't mean to sound bitter, cold, or cruel, but I am, so that's how it comes out.”
What and who makes you jump-in-the-air-happy? Hitting the Amazon No 1 Bestseller spot in March!
What's the best advice you've ever been given? Don't listen to anybody else, do what you think is right Quick fire round: What's your favourite? Movie: The Thin Red Line Food: Avocado Lipstick: Clinique Place to hang: Lynne Franks' B.Hive Covent Garden City: London Website: www.foodphilosophy.co.uk, www.suethomason.com, www.beautifulmagazine.co.uk
What does the term SASSY mean to you? Sassy girls know their value and show it - it's super confidence and it is the right of every woman to own it.
High fives to that, Sue!