Host of an eponymous TV show, Dr. Phil (Life Strategies; Relationship Rescue; etc.) here ventures into the world of diet books with a plan that's apt to appeal primarily to desperate chronic dieters. For over three decades, he says, he's counseled patients both morbidly obese and dangerously thin, helping them confront why they set their minds to fail at weight management. He looks carefully, for instance, at why people overeat in response to problems, or why they surround themselves with unhealthy snacks and people. While it's refreshing to see a diet book geared toward the psychology behind weight gain (instead of one that faddishly recommends a few specific foods to eat and to avoid), McGraw tends to complicate his advice with unnecessary jargon. For example, instead of asserting that dieters should feel free to reward themselves for working out, he offers a treatise on""consequating your exercise behavior"" using""contingency management."" What everyone else would call""whole foods,"" McGraw refers dubs""high-response cost foods,"" and touts this as a revolutionary approach to dieting. The book's title is also slightly misleading, since each of the 7""keys"" includes a multitude of internal steps, some of which require lengthy""self-audits"" in order to progress. Readers might have appreciated interviews with McGraw's former clients--he says he had an""80-plus percent success rate"" in the eight years he focused on morbidly obese patients--and a little less psychobabble. That said, with his multitude of fans and his frank tone, this latest volume should sell like whole-wheat hotcakes.
Reviewed on: 09/01/2003 Release date: 09/01/2003
Paperback - 304 pages - 978-0-7432-3232-6
Downloadable Audio - 978-0-7435-5529-6
Mass Market Paperbound - 450 pages - 978-1-4165-1318-6