Review by: Jean Kim
This book presents an “integrative medicine” approach to the treatment of binge eating and compulsive overeating. Integrative medicine is a person-centred approach that takes into account the body, mind, and spirit. The material is presented in a clear, logical, and understandable manner.
This workbook is divided into three parts: Healing the Body, Healing the Mind, and Healing the Spirit. Across these three sections, several broad areas about eating and the body are reviewed. Examples of topics include education about BMI, nutrition, body image, core-beliefs, and managing stress. While many of these chapters provide great therapeutic tools and strategies, some are devoted solely to education (e.g., what’s “good” or “bad” about specific foods, understanding weight and BMI, knowing other problems or diagnoses that often co-occur with binge eating). Though this information is helpful and interesting to know, these chapters are more educational rather than treatment-focused.
While the majority of the book’s content seems important to explore, some topics are covered only at a brief and superficial level. For example, one chapter briefly reviews traditional approaches to binge eating and compulsive overeating, such as Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy, Dialectical Behaviour Therapy, and Interpersonal Therapy. Though aspects of these traditional therapies are practiced as skills throughout the book, none of the therapies are explored fully and deeply. Another section briefly discusses emotions and ways to down-regulate intense feelings. However, a more thorough discussion about the purpose of emotions, how they are informative and helpful, and the importance of having a deeper understanding of one’s feelings is missing in the book.
Overall, this workbook provides great information covering a broad array of physical, mental, and spiritual topics. This book might be a helpful first resource for people looking for a “catch all” book that briefly covers a wide variety of topics. After learning about these topics, you can reflect on what aspects were the most helpful for you (e.g., emotion regulation; irrational beliefs; stress management; mindfulness) and seek specialized books that provide thorough and complete information in those areas.