Thinfluence: Thin-flu-ence (noun) the powerful and surprising effect friends, family, work, and environment have on weight
by Walter C. Willett, Malissa Wood, and Dan Childs, copyright 2104, by Harvard University
This delightful book addresses the influence of the people around us on our weight: family, workplace, friends, as well as: food environment, physical environment, media and government policy. Studies and anecdotes are presented that show that grouping with fat friends supports staying fat; grouping with thin friends supports staying (or getting) thin.
They explore each topic through a stylized investigation in three steps: Analyze, Act, Influence. My favorite new idea is the observation that we donít have to drop our heavy friends to avoid their negative influence; we only have to change what activities we perform with them Ė say exchanging eating time for just coffee time.
Itís an important book that could help many people see that actions separate from eating can help their weight loss goals.
The one negative is that the book is, unfortunately, visually unappealing. It looks like a set of Power-Point slides combined with a lecture automatically produced by an iPhone App into a book. It could use a good visual editor to help with fonts, spacing, bolding, and the awkwardly placed gray boxes that make it difficult to follow the train of thought.
I recommend the book to followers of The Beck Diet Solution who will likely find that it complements Beckís strategies using Cognitive Behavior Therapy.