Obsessed: America's Food Addiction--and My Own

Obsessed: America's Food Addiction--and My Own

Mika Brzezinski

Language: English

Pages: 256

ISBN: 1602862346

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

Mika Brzezinski is at war against obesity. On Morning Joe, she is often so adamant about improving America’s eating habits that some people have dubbed her “the food Nazi.” What they don’t know is that Mika wages a personal fight against unhealthy eating habits every day, and in this book she describes her history of food obsession and distorted body image, and her lifelong struggle to be thin. She believes it’s time we all learned to stop blaming ourselves, and each other, and look at the real culprits—the food we eat and our addiction to it. Mika feels the only way to do this is to break through the walls of silence and shame we’ve built around obesity and food obsessions. She believes we need to talk openly about how our country became overweight, and what we can do to turn the corner and step firmly onto the path of health. So Mika made a deal with her very close friend Diane: they would work together on this book and on their personal goals, to help Diane drop 75 pounds and to break Mika’s obsession with staying superthin.
As she did in her bestseller Knowing Your Value, Mika has packed each chapter with insights from notable people in medicine, health, business, the arts, and politics. Singer Jennifer Hudson, the late writer and director Nora Ephron, TV host Gayle King, New Jersey governor Chris Christie, and many others open up to Mika about their own challenges and what works for them when it comes to food and diet. It’s time we stopped whispering the F-word (“fat”) the way we used to shun the C-word (“cancer”).

This book—with its trademark Brzezinski smarts, honesty, and courage—launches us into a no-holds-barred conversation with family and friends, in schools and kitchens, in Congress and the food industry, to help us all find ways to tackle one of the biggest problems standing between us and a healthier America.

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captivate me. And that’s bad? “We get so much information about food, and if you’re health conscious it can kind of morph into an obsession,” Margo explained patiently. “Lots of people get into that today.” Food, it seemed, was still owning me. Orthorexia nervosa is part of a larger category referred to as “eating disorders not otherwise specified.” Margo said, “In that diagnosis, people can have some anorexic diagnostic indicators, some bulimic indicators, sometimes they have a combination of

So it looks like my agenda is to adjust my diet and maintain my weight at a healthy level—not too thin, but not climbing steadily upward, either. Margo helped me recognize that if I can accept my “set point,” my struggle will become a whole lot easier. Although my weight has been up and down since I was fifteen, I never fully realized that every time I gained weight I seemed to top out at 135 pounds. That is actually pretty reasonable for my height of five foot seven at the age of forty-five.

the way, especially Joe Scarborough, my co-host on Morning Joe and wingman on the issue of obesity. Joe takes constant beatings from me on the air, but he truly stands by me in the fight to make our food environment healthy. I want to thank my boss Phil Griffin for always encouraging me to be transparent and real, despite the consequences. My thanks to Alex Korson, our executive producer on Morning Joe, for helping us get everything done. To all the extraordinary women and men we interviewed, a

weeks on the show, eating everything under the sun, the next six or eight weeks will be about really cutting back on fried foods, on cheese, on red meat, on alcohol, on starches, on processed foods. Eating healthy is like a bank account. If you spend your calories by eating a lot of them in one case, then you have to save your calories later by eating better. You know, it’s just basic arithmetic.” Padma is one more voice touting the benefits of whole food. “Eating food as close to how nature

and government can and should do a lot more. But we can’t hand off all the responsibility. We have to fight back together against a food industry that targets kids with billions of dollars in marketing, a media industry that tries to impose its own notions of healthy bodies on the rest of us, and a diet industry that says weight loss is easy if you just buy this or that product. Teaching our children how to resist all that has to begin at home. That’s where we can control the conversation.

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