Rethinking Thin by Gina Kolata
The New Science of Weight Loss--and the Myths and Realities of Dieting

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In this eye-opening book, New York Times science writer Gina Kolata shows that our society's obsession with dieting and weight loss is less about keeping trim and staying healthy than about money, power, trends, and impossible ideals.

Rethinking Thin is at once an account of the place of diets in American society and a provocative critique of the weight-loss industry. Kolata's account of four determined dieters' progress through a study comparing the Atkins diet to a conventional low-calorie one becomes a broad tale of science and society, of social mores and social sanctions, and of politics and power.

Rethinking Thin asks whether words like willpower are really applicable when it comes to eating and body weight. It dramatizes what it feels like to spend a lifetime struggling with one's weight and fantasizing about finally, at long last, getting thin. It tells the little-known story of the science of obesity and the history of diets and dieting--scientific and social phenomena that made some people rich and thin and left others fat and miserable. And it offers commonsense answers to questions about weight, eating habits, and obesity--giving us a better understanding of the weight that is right for our bodies.


About Gina Kolata

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Gina Kolata is a senior writer at the New York Times, where she reports on science and medicine; a bestselling author; a frequent lecturer; and a two-time Pulitzer Prize finalist. She has written several books, including Rethinking Thin: The New Science of Weight Loss-and the Myths and Realities of Dieting (Farrar, Straus and Giroux), which was a finalist for the Quill book awards, and the national bestseller Flu: The Story of the Great Influenza Pandemic of 1918 and the Search for the Virus that Caused It (Farrar, Straus and Giroux). Paul Hoffman is the host of the PBS television series Great Minds of Science and the president and CEO of Liberty Science Center in Jersey City, New Jersey, as well as the author of several books including King's Gambit: A Son, a Father, and the World's Most Dangerous Game (Hyperion) and the international bestseller The Man Who Loved Only Numbers: The Story of Paul Erdös and the Search for Mathematical Truth (Hyperion). He was the editor in chief of Discover for 10 years as well as president and publisher of Encyclopedia Britannica, and is a puzzlemaster (under the pseudonym Dr. Crypton) and a class-A level chess player.
Published April 29, 2008 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux. 272 pages
Genres: Health, Fitness & Dieting, Business & Economics. Non-fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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The reality, Kolata reports, is that no matter what the diet and how hard fat people try, most will not lose a lot of weight and keep it off for a long time.

| Read Full Review of Rethinking Thin: The New Scie...

The New York Times

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Study after study, Kolata notes, has shown that for most fat people the long-term rewards of dieting are modest at best.

May 06 2007 | Read Full Review of Rethinking Thin: The New Scie...

Entertainment Weekly

That's the grim news that New York Times science reporter Gina Kolata delivers in Rethinking Thin — an information-packed but — I hate to say it — boring book.

May 11 2007 | Read Full Review of Rethinking Thin: The New Scie...

Daily Kos

The Atkins Diet is better known - it's based on the the work of the late Robert Atkins, MD, a New York cardiologist turned diet doctor.

Feb 10 2010 | Read Full Review of Rethinking Thin: The New Scie...

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