Friday, December 18, 2015

Happy Holidays/NEDA Article/Another Award

Guess what? This blog one another award! I'm in great company - be sure to check out the rest of the winners.

Also, I have a new article up for the National Eating Disorder Association (NEDA).

Recovery is possible.

Happy holidays.

You can find Does Every Woman Have an Eating Disorder? Challenging Our Nation's Fixation with Food and Weight on Amazon (as a paperback and Kindle) and at

Wednesday, December 02, 2015

Interviews in Recovery - A Conversation with Erin Mandras

Recently, I had the opportunity to e-meet Erin Konheim Mandras, ex-athlete/coach and mom of two, who recovered from anorexia. We decided to interview each other for different perspectives on eating disorder recovery. Below is my interview with Erin - enjoy!

SR: What connection, if any, do you see between your athletic participation and the development of your eating disorder?

EM: I believe that my participation in athletics and soccer significantly contributed to the development of my eating disorder. The competitive component, along with pressures to perform and succeed, are all elements that can lead to an unanticipated disorder, such as anorexia. Also, athletes want to be as physically fit as possible, and with a personality that tends to take things to the extreme, exercise can go too far. 

SR: How did you get motivated to recover? 

EM: I became motivated to recover from my eating disorder far before I actually made any changes. Parts of me wanted to get better and feel better at my lowest point, but the act of changing my diet was too scary, and I just didn't know where to start. My psychiatrist and parents offered me an incentive to gain weight­­ which ultimately became my excuse to start turning my behaviors around. Mostly, I did not enjoy the way I felt and how obsessed I had become with food. 

SR: How did you recover? What helped? 

EM: I, first, acknowledged I had a problem. I just needed to be surrounded by a lot of support, therapy, and medication to slowly alter my thoughts and behaviors about food, my diet, and my body image. Then, my parents, with the support of my psychiatrist, offered me an incentive to gain weight. I had a goal and an excuse to start getting better. Once I began slowly introducing food back in my diet, my body wasn't able to comfortably handle and digest it. So I began added foods that I had already been eating, but in larger quantities. Then, I wanted to get rid of anything that was associated with my eating disorder; that brought me back to the feeling of weakness, obsession, and frailty. This included clothing, shoes, food stored in my apartment, soccer equipment, and more. This helped establish a clean slate involving different and new behaviors. With the combination of all of the support I had while having an eating disorder, the will to want to get better, and an incentive to help get me on the right track, I was able to recover. 

SR: What was the most challenging thing about recovery?

EM: The most challenging part of recovery was seeing the number on the scale go up. I knew it was for my best interest and to regain health, but I couldn't bear seeing it increase. I feared it would go up quickly and uncontrollably, so with this fear in mind, increasing my food consumption was also terrifying. What should professionals know about recovery from a patient’s perspective? Professionals should understand that an individual experiencing such a disorder is a person possessing certain qualities; competitiveness, drive, and motivation. Therefore, if you are able to turn "the truck around and re­route it" by using an incentive (something that individual would have a desire to achieve), then that may be a good start. At the same time, a person with an eating disorder needs to be able to acknowledge there is a problem, and a solution; it will just take time, patience, and the same qualities used to get oneself that low, to get healthy again. 

SR: What message do you have for those who are currently struggling with an eating disorder? 

EM: I empathize with those who are currently struggling with the disorder. Though they may believe they are healthy, fine, and highly functioning, it is no way to live life. It consumes your mind, heart, and ability to give your most to yourself, your loved ones, and the world. Even if you are succeeding in your career, family, and social life, think how much more you would have to offer if your life didn't revolve around the pure focus of food, calories, and scale. Life is too short. If you have a problem, seek help. You cannot do it alone. You need all the support you can get. You can do it! 

SR: Any favorite resources (e.g., websites, books) for those in recovery? 

EM: There weren't as many accessible resources twelve years ago as there are now. I wish I had blogs, like yours and mine, readily available while battling and struggling from my eating disorder. If anything, I would have been reassured that I wasn't alone. That is why I will continue writing, speaking, and connecting with those experiencing similar challenges I faced, and continue to face in regards to food, eating disorders, and body image. I urge people to use my blog as a resource, and to feel free to contact me anytime with questions or concerns. I can relate to many people on many different levels!

You can find Does Every Woman Have an Eating Disorder? Challenging Our Nation's Fixation with Food and Weight on Amazon (as a paperback and Kindle) and at

Wednesday, November 04, 2015

Holidays, Fitness, and Food

Here we are on the cusp of the holiday food season, and the diet/exercise talk has already intensified. On the day before Halloween, that dreaded candy-workout image reappeared on social media - you know, the one that identifies different types of Halloween candy by what types of workouts you'll need to burn them off?

Here's why this type of thinking is dangerous: If you choose the Reece's over the Twix only for calorie count, you're missing out on an opportunity to eat intuitively, to find pleasure and enjoyment from food. To me, it doesn't so much matter if you choose one or the other (or neither or both), but if you're going on calorie count alone, you're ignoring your preference, something that could end up backfiring in the long-run.

Do your kids want candy? Let them eat it. The allure will fade away soon. I like this mom's approach. 

And how about those exercise equivalents? So often, we're positioning exercise as a punishment for something we enjoy. We're robbing movement of its innately reinforcing value and instead suggesting that exercise only exists for the purpose of calorie compensation. But this isn't true! This is a myth that the diet and fitness industries use to lure people to buy products, pills, plans, and memberships. But what if fitness were fun?

For several months now, I've returned to my fitness roots, leading group cyling classes at a local university. I can't tell you how much I enjoy teaching again! I love the opportunity to encourage and inspire students, to lead them through a challenging but manageable course, to appreciate good music together. I love that I'm helping them improve their physical and mental health. 

But my favorite part of returning to teaching is making a small dent in an often disordered industry, one that celebrates unhealthy weight loss, views exercise as punishment for eating, and tries to motivate through self-attack. My classes are about building strength and power, celebrating our capabilities, and mostly, about having fun. I'd rather have students approach me after class and tell me that they enjoyed my music (which they do!) than comment on their calorie burns. It's the joy of movement, and the feelings around it, that sustain a lifelong commitment to physical activity.

So, if you want the Twix, eat the Twix. If you want to exercise, do that, too, But keep these things mentally separate to avoid that slippery slope. 

You can find Does Every Woman Have an Eating Disorder? Challenging Our Nation's Fixation with Food and Weight on Amazon (as a paperback and Kindle) and at

Monday, October 26, 2015

Anna's Law and Eating Disorder Lobby Day

"My insurance is cutting out."

That dreaded sentence professionals fear most.

When I first began doing this work, I was struck by the irony of hoping someone would become more symptomatic so her insurance company would authorize her to get help. . . that someone already receiving care would continue to struggle so that her insurance would keep paying for the care she so desperately needed. Even then, her insurance might cut funds for lack of sufficient progress. It's the Catch-22 of health insurance. Do well and they cut off. Don't do well enough and encounter the same risk. 

I've seen patients denied access to care because they aren't sick enough. I've seen insurance cut out when patients most need support. And I've seen insurance refuse to pay when patients and families are struggling to finance a physically, emotionally, and fiscally debilitating illness.

Something has to change.

The Anna Westin Act of 2015, also known as Anna's Law, was introduced by Kitty Westin, who lost her daughter to anorexia. Kitty's advocacy efforts focus on holding insurance companies accountable for paying for eating disorder care. To learn more about why we need Anna's Law, click here.

Tomorrow marks the final 2015 eating disorder lobby day. If you can't be in Washington this week, you can still do something. Donate, write a letter, contact your state's insurance commissioner when an insurance company refuses to pay. Help a growing movement gain momentum toward the goal of making eating disorder treatment accessible and affordable for all.

You can find Does Every Woman Have an Eating Disorder? Challenging Our Nation's Fixation with Food and Weight on Amazon (as a paperback and Kindle) and at

Monday, September 07, 2015

Enough with the "New Skinny"

"Strong is the new skinny."

"Healthy is the new skinny."

"Curvy is the new skinny."

Everything is the new skinny.

These slogans, presumably constructed to promote body acceptance and offer an alternative to the thin ideal, still posit a common end-goal. We're still striving for some iteration of skinny and continuing to promote thinness as the gold standard of success.

So let's step away from skinny as the solution - and focus on strength, health, curves, or whatever else we value without a tired target diluting our intention.

We don't need another skinny.

You can find Does Every Woman Have an Eating Disorder? Challenging Our Nation's Fixation with Food and Weight on Amazon (as a paperback and Kindle) and at

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Misinterpreting Intuitive Eating

As a proponent of intuitive eating, I'm often presented with challenges to the model that seem to misinterpret its basic premise. I've heard some interpret intuitive eating to mean that we're advocating that people eat cake each and every time they're hungry.

But that's really missing the point. Intuitive eating is a flexible practice that encourages you to trust your body - but it encourages you to be mindful of the signals your body is sending before, during, and after you eat.

In her piece, "Why I'm Not an Intuitive Eating Coach," Isabel Foxen Duke offers some additional misconceptions around the practice of intuitive eating. While she's right - that many will turn intuitive eating into a diet - the premise of intuitive eating is based on rejecting the diet mentality, so if you're turning it into a diet, you're not doing intuitive eating. If you're creating rules related to intuitive eating, then you're still interacting with the food police.

Intuitive eating, as discussed by Tribole and Resch, offers a set of 10 practices that are just that - practices. They aren't rules, rigid guidelines, or anything else so structured as to invite rebellion and dissent.

That said, they offer a decent blueprint for developing a healthy relationship with food. Note that only two of the ten practices involve how people normally define intuitive eating - eating when you're hungry and stopping when you're full - "Honor Your Hunger" and "Respect Your Fullness." When someone turns intuitive eating into a diet, she's really ignoring the rest of the principles and overly, rigidly focusing on these two.

What's more, intuitive eating, in my understanding, was developed as a compassionate approach toward healing disordered eating. If people eat past fullness or use food to cope with feelings, they aren't shamed or berated by their counselors; rather, the information is used as a learning opportunity. The spirit is of collaboration and compassion, diametrically opposed to the diet mentality.

Intuitive eating promotes eating for nourishment and pleasure, a balance, which, as a delicate dance, is fluid, evolving, and forgiving.

Wednesday, July 08, 2015

Dear People. . .

Dear People Magazine,

I recently happened upon your exclusive video, Kendra Wilkinson on Why She Can't Really Have a Six-Pack Right Now, and I wanted to share a few thoughts.

Kendra's six-pack, or lack thereof, isn't news. Some may argue that all celebrity gossip lacks journalistic integrity, but this item is particularly insignificant.

More, Kendra shouldn't have to defend the fact that her abs currently lack chiseling. No excuses are necessary for her body shape or size. And suggesting that she doesn't have a six-pack "right now" implies a promise of abdominal contouring to come. People readers don't need a guarantee.

Women's bodies - their weight gains and losses, their cellulite, their "problem areas" - need not fill your pages. You could publish an entire year's worth of magazines without a single feature, or even comment, on a celebrity body - and in doing so, you would contribute to a growing culture of positive body image promotion and self-acceptance. Imagine how newsworthy that would be!

You can find Does Every Woman Have an Eating Disorder? Challenging Our Nation's Fixation with Food and Weight on Amazon (as a paperback and Kindle) and at

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Happy Bookiversary and Another Book Giveaway!

In honor of the one-year anniversary of the publication of Does Every Woman Have an Eating Disorder? Challenging Our Nation's Fixation with Food and Weight, I'm hosting another book giveaway!

To enter the contest, either email me privately (drstaceyny at gmail dot com) or comment below on the topic of: "What Recovery Means to Me."

The deadline for entries is 6/29/15. Two winners will be selected at random that week, and the books should arrive around Independence Day.

Fine print: Please enter the contest only once. For those who submit via email, please include your mailing address to receive a book if you win. If you submit via comment, be sure to send me a follow-up email with your mailing address. By submitting an entry, you authorize DEWHAED to post your anonymous response. Winners will be selected by drawing so as to preserve response integrity. Prior contest winners are ineligible to win this contest.

You can find Does Every Woman Have an Eating Disorder? Challenging Our Nation's Fixation with Food and Weight on Amazon (as a paperback and Kindle) and at

Thursday, May 21, 2015

A Love Letter to My Patients in Early Recovery from Anorexia

You recently accused me of wanting you to be fat. Here's what I've been thinking. . . . Long after we part ways, I'll remember the sound of your voice, the tender and emotional moments we shared, those times we burst out laughing together. I'll have little memory of what you weighed.

I have no investment in wanting you, according to your eating disorder, to be fat. What I care about is your brain, that it's nourished sufficiently for you to think clearly and be yourself again. I'd like to see you return to the you you were before this ugly illness hijacked your anatomy and convinced you to accept this as your new normal.

I want you to be healthy - yes, I know you hate this word right now - but, I do. I want you to be able to swim in the ocean, sit comfortably in class, breathe in the mountain air, sleep like a baby, and have a baby (if you're a woman and that's what you want).

I want your bones to be strong enough to remain fracture-free, to support you on the dance floor and through old age. Hopefully, you'll live long and hard in recovery.

I want your hair to return to its previous fullness and luster.

I want your organs to function efficiently, as if to shout, for example, "This is what it looks like to be a working kidney!"

I want your heart to beat at a normal rate and rhythm. I want your most precious muscle to be stable and strong.

I want you to experience less depression and anxiety, for you to rest comfortably through the night, and for those frightening suicidal thoughts, that never plagued you before, to fade into the darkness.

I want you to feel energized, strong, and capable.

You're so immersed in this illness that you don't think anything's wrong. But there is. And I know that the core you, the real you, is terrified and pleading for help.

I don't want you to be fat. I just want you, in multiple definitions of the word, to live.

You can find Does Every Woman Have an Eating Disorder? Challenging Our Nation's Fixation with Food and Weight on Amazon (as a paperback and Kindle) and at

Wednesday, May 06, 2015

Two Awards this Week!

This blog was the lucky recipient of not one, but two awards in the blogosphere this week!
Best of the Web - Blog

The first came from Psych Central, which named DEWHAED one of the Top 10 Eating Disorder Blogs of 2015.
The second award came courtesy of Healthline, awarding DEWHAED one of the Best Eating Disorder Blogs of 2015.

Many thanks to these sites for recognizing my nine years(!) of blogging dedication. I encourage my readers to check out my great company on both lists for additional reading suggestions. 

You can find Does Every Woman Have an Eating Disorder? Challenging Our Nation's Fixation with Food and Weight on Amazon (as a paperback and Kindle) and at

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Helping Patients with Binge Eating Disorder Drop the Weight (Mentality)

A woman, who reported she struggles with Binge Eating Disorder, contacted me recently online. She was scheduled to participate in a medical weight-loss program but wondered if she should address her BED first. Unfortunately, this woman is not the only person with BED who has fallen prey to the weight-loss industry.

One of the most challenging things in my work with patients with BED is disavowing them of the diet and weight mentality. Most patients come in with a significant diet history and, despite many failed diet attempts, are intent on losing weight in treatment via the latest diet trends.

I've found through the years that with some patients, getting them to commit to working on their binges, rather than focusing on weight, is a relatively easy switch, while others remain firmly entrenched in a weight-centric mentality. With these patients, I see little-to-no progress. They're they ones that drop out of treatment prematurely when I tell them that their most recent return to Weight Watchers or Jenny Craig is contraindicated with our work. It's a major paradigm shift that's required, and my experience is that patients who are able to think outside the box have an easier time catching on. 

Here are 10 treatment factors I've found that can help bring many patients with BED around to more of a focus on their relationship with food than the current number on the scale.

1) Refuse to set a weight loss goal. Instead, set goals around reducing binge eating and improving the patient's relationship to food.
2) Provide information on the relationship between food restriction and binge eating  (e.g., the diet/binge cycle, the Minnesota Starvation Experiment). Create a timeline of the patient's diet/weight history, noting weight losses followed by inevitable gains. 
3) Do not support the patient's participation in eating trends, cleanses, jumpstarts, etc. Focus on what the patient can add to his current "diet," rather than take away.
4) Operate from an intuitive eating perspective and encourage the patient to legalize off-limits foods in a mindful way.
5) Explore the emotional function of binge eating, as well as how an attachment to the diet mentality may trigger binge emotions. 
6) Provide information on the "Health at Every Size" movement, as well as on the media's inflated damages of obesity; cite meta-analytic studies suggesting that those who are overweight or low-level obese are just as healthy as their "normal"-weight peers.
7) Educate the patient on societal and internalized weight stigma and the toll these experiences can take on her physical and mental health.
8) Work with the patient on acceptance and self-care of his body as-is.
9) Encourage a relationship with movement that is joyful and reinforcing and thus more likely to persist beyond sporadic, diet-centric efforts.
10) Recognize that healing from an eating disorder might be a bumpy road but that, with persistence and attention to the above factors, recovery is entirely possible.

You can find Does Every Woman Have an Eating Disorder? Challenging Our Nation's Fixation with Food and Weight on Amazon (as a paperback and Kindle) and at

Thursday, April 02, 2015

Women's History Month at Miami-Dade College

A couple of weeks ago, I had the honor of speaking at Miami-Dade College for Women's History Month. A number of the students in attendance, as part of a class project, had constructed life-size body collages exhibiting information about eating disorders. Here's a panoramic shot of the students with their projects, their professor, and me:

So wonderful, right? And here are some of the individual projects close up. The first is a visual representation of the emotional pain and body distortion inherent to anorexia:

The second collage highlights the relationship between eating disorders and pregnancy, commenting on the impact of disordered eating on a growing fetus:

I even got to pose with a life-size Barbie, one student's interpretation of Mattel's popular diva:

This Barbie sported post-it notes highlighting her "thin arms," "thigh gap," and other unrealistic, culturally idealized body features. Even life-size, though, her facial expression was manufactured by a printer, and she's barely three dimensional. There's just something much more compelling about real-life people, isn't there?

One of the most sobering parts of the event  occurred as I was gearing up to speak, witnessing various students, faculty members, and other passersby observe the students' creations. One middle-aged woman took a casual glance at the body projects and commented, "I wish I had an eating disorder."

It's never too late to incorporate another anecdote into a talk. . . .

You can find Does Every Woman Have an Eating Disorder? Challenging Our Nation's Fixation with Food and Weight on Amazon (as a paperback and Kindle) and at

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Recovering Around a "Backdrop of Disorder"

Check out my latest NEDA blog about recovering around a backdrop of disorder - thanks NEDA for publishing my words!

You can find Does Every Woman Have an Eating Disorder? Challenging Our Nation's Fixation with Food and Weight on Amazon (as a paperback and Kindle) and at

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

The Best Worst Question of All

I was recently etroduced to the work of Dana Shavin. Her memoir, The Body Tourist, chronicles her experiences following her recovery from anorexia. I asked her for any insights she might have for my readers about illness and recovery. Here's what she had to say:

The Best Worst Question of All

It’s a great question. And a terrible one.

“What’s the most important thing you learned in your recovery from anorexia?”

I was asked this not long after I left the hospital, by a friend of a friend who was
struggling with depression. It was a great question, because it made me think hard about
what things had really helped, and why and how they helped. And it was a terrible
question, because it asked that I hang my recovery on the peg of one “most important”
thing. To do so would have been to ignore the complexities of anorexia, and the
multitude of important lessons of both illness and recovery.

That said, here is a partial list of the most important things I came to understand that
helped me in my recovery. There are many more things—people, books, therapy,
journaling, taking positive risks, asking for support—that also played a role. As you read
through these, I hope you’ll think about what has helped, or is helping—or would help—you.

--Eating disorders trick us into believing we are thinking clearly, but in truth they are side
trips that lead us away from the real questions we could and should be asking ourselves.
What if, instead of what won’t I eat today and how much can I exercise, I asked
questions like: what are my dreams? My goals? What am I passionate about? What gives
me meaning? What do I want to DO with my time in the world? These questions took me
outside my small, stuck world of anorexia and reminded me that there was a larger world

--Starving, binging and purging, and eating and exercising compulsively are behaviors
rich in metaphor; but ironically, we can only really understand their message once we
STOP engaging in them. I so wanted, while I was ill, a guarantee that my life would be
better/different/happier if I “gave in and gained weight” as I called it. But I learned that
in fact I could not create the better, different, happier life I desired until I stopped the
addictive behaviors. It took every ounce of courage I could muster to trust that I would do
the work of making my life better/different/happier as I regained to a healthy weight. But
it was enormously more empowering to do that work and reap the rewards (I became an
artist and a writer and a dog rescuer and a life coach) than it was to starve, day in and day
out, with no plans, no goals, and no dreams larger than to weigh a bit less than the day

--Recovery is a complex process that starts, but doesn’t finish, in the 28 days or 4
months or year you’re in treatment. It happens over time, and it requires a willingness to
continue questioning (kindly, and without judgment) all the things you thought were true
about yourself, and the world, that led to or sustained your eating disorder. The gift of
looking deeply, honestly, and over time at yourself and your behaviors is the gift of true
understanding and, ultimately, forgiveness.

--The size of a life isn’t inversely proportional to the size of a body (i.e. my life did not
feel larger and richer the smaller I got, as I thought it would) but grows in proportion
to how well we nourish the self. Allowing myself to become fully functioning, curious,
authentic, creative, interested in the outside world, flexible, and open-minded is what
grew—and continues to grow—and expand my life.

--A sense of humor goes a long, long, long, long way. Try to have one about yourself.

--Forgive yourself for whatever it is you are not. Forgive yourself for whatever it is
you can’t do. Forgive yourself for all the ways you believe you have failed. Everybody
fails. Tons of people are failing right now, at something. True freedom comes when you
understand this, and let yourself off the hook.

Dana Lise Shavin is the author of The Body Tourist (Little Feather Books, 2014), a raw,
candid, at times comical look at the six years following her “recovery” from anorexia
nervosa. Her website is

You can find Does Every Woman Have an Eating Disorder? Challenging Our Nation's Fixation with Food and Weight on Amazon (as a paperback and Kindle) and at

Thursday, February 19, 2015

2015's NEDAwareness Week

Drumroll for NEDAwareness Week!

The theme for this year's event, happening next week (February 22nd -28th), is "I Had No Idea." Programming centers around helping people "get in the know" toward the goals of improved education and awareness and early intervention and prevention of these devastating illnesses.

I'll be participating in the NEDA panel, "'I Had No Idea!' Athletics and Eating Disorders: What Fitness Professionals Need to Know and How They Can Help" on 2/24 in New York City. Later in the week, I'll be a guest in a NEDA Twitter chat: "A Slippery Slope: Identifying Disordered Behaviors Before they Go Too Far" along with Cristin Runfola, PhD and author, Jenni Schaefer. You can follow my Twitter (@drstaceyla) for more information on these events.

Want to attend one of the many NEDAwareness Week events ? Check out the panoply of offerings here or follow the hashtag #NEDAwareness. Get involved - and in the know!

You can find Does Every Woman Have an Eating Disorder? Challenging Our Nation's Fixation with Food and Weight on Amazon (as a paperback and Kindle) and at

Wednesday, February 04, 2015

Breaking Bad Ads

Anyone see this gem of a Superbowl commercial?

It's titled, "All You Can Eat," and yes, that's the voice of Aaron Paul, of Breaking Bad fame.

Any thoughts?

Here are mine. Food is not a drug. It's something we need to survive. Can people develop unhealthy relationships to food, behaviors that mimic addiction? Yes. But, this commercial doesn't focus on that process or how to heal it. What it does do is villainize food - condemning items that are glazed, fried, baked, iced, etc. The images are presented at a frenetic pace, with food portrayed as harmful and repugnant as the blue product Paul's character helped produce.

The ad ends, "No one's telling you what to do. You can stop whenever you want. Well, sort of. . . You got to eat, right?" Yes, you do have to eat, and this is one of the main reason that abstinence models of addiction don't work with food. Cut out those foods that you're craving? Often, those will become your binge foods. Check out the diet-binge cycle or have a conversation with someone in recovery from an eating disorder to find out more.

The finale presents the words, "It's time to take back control." But to me, control doesn't come in the form of a diet (even a diet that doesn't call itself a diet). Control comes from returning to your innate ability to self-regulate intake and to use food for nourishment (and pleasure) in healthy ways. The ad's tagline? "Weight Watchers: Help with the hardest part." I disagree. In the struggle to heal your relationship with food, getting involved with Weight Watchers, endorsing the diet mentality, and demonizing food items is likely to make the process that much harder.

You can find Does Every Woman Have an Eating Disorder? Challenging Our Nation's Fixation with Food and Weight on Amazon (as a paperback and Kindle) and at

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Celebrity Weightloss

Last week, the media seduced us with the headline, "Kirstie Alley Slim Again."

Is anyone still buying this?

As writes, "Kirstie Alley is no stranger to a diet. The 63-year-old star has been thin, fat and thin again more times than we can count." Apparently, Alley recently lost 50 pounds. Again.

So, why are we still reading the headlines, listening to the news clips, and studying the before and after pictures?

Diet work - until they don't. Celebrity weight-loss roller coasters are perfect examples of what professionals have come to to call the "weight-cycling industry." What if someone like Kristie Alley, Marie Osmond, or even Oprah, who recently told Barbara Walters she still needs to "make peace with the whole weight thing" were to come out with a statement of success in this arena?

Now, that would be newsworthy.

You can find Does Every Woman Have an Eating Disorder? Challenging Our Nation's Fixation with Food and Weight on Amazon (as a paperback and Kindle) and at