Review of Paul McKenna’s “I Can Make You Thin”

27 May 2011 – 7:14 am

I Can Make You Thin cover

I lost 6 pounds in 2 weeks!

As far as I am concerned, that says it all. For someone who only needs to lose an additional 18 pounds to reach her goal, this is a big deal.

For inquiring minds who want to know I will tell a bit more. Two weeks ago, I went to the library looking for a book on behavior modification to help me lose weight. This Paul McKenna book was the first item at the top of the search. Since I don’t follow popular culture or watch television much, I had never heard of him before, so I checked out his book. If I had known he was something of a celebrity, I probably would have looked at the second item of the search.

I consider myself an old hand on most of the common sense advice about reducing food intake and increasing exercise. Most of the time in the last ten years when I have really made up my mind to do it, I have been able to lose a bit of weight. This year has been difficult for losing weight for some reason, although I was exercising more than I had previously, having been inspired by my daughter’s enlistment in the US Coast Guard and her physical transformation during eight weeks of basic training. At the same time I increased my exercise, I could not seem to control my afternoon and evening munchies, grabbing whatever food was handy while fetching kids’ snacks, cooking and cleaning up dinner, and sometimes even snacking before bedtime.

So in one afternoon I read the first half of the book (it’s a nice and short 167 pages) and by dinner time and through the evening, I already felt more in control of my eating. Just reading about the Four Golden Rules of Eating with accompanying explanations made all the difference. I do not want to say much about these rules here, because I know I read these rules a couple of years ago on a blog by Australian doctor Dr. Martin Russell (who also happens to currently have the top rated review of McKenna’s book on Amazon) and immediately dismissed them out of hand as something that would not work for me. I think what convinced me to give the rules a try this time was “hey, what have I got to lose,” the explanations provided with each rule in the book, and McKenna’s promise that you don’t have to believe in the stuff in his book for it to work. Yes, and I am probably a bit of a sucker for the testimonials, too, although weight loss testimonials for anything are as common as kudzu in Georgia. The Four Golden Rules are deceptively common sense. Deceptive, I say, because why have I never tried to eat that way before? The book also addresses issues of emotional eating, binging, and cravings which I have had problems with from time to time, but for whatever reason has not cropped up yet. (Knock on wood.) I am glad to know I can turn back to the book with some more things to try if I run into some trouble.

The last two weeks have been extraordinarily easy, and I cannot say why other than this thing works. The hardest part has been not stepping on the scale or whipping out the tape measure while I have been feeling that some of my clothes are looser. (McKenna highly recommends only weighing once every two weeks.)

So what do I like most about The Simplest Weight-Loss System in the World ™?

I like that I will never have to read a nutritional label again for calories or grams of carbs or protein. I like that the system asks me to tune into my body and pay attention to it. I like that I feel I am beginning to have a normal relationship with food.

Most of all, I like that it works for me.

(For my local friends, I will be returning the book and CD back to the library as soon as I get my copy from Amazon!)

{Update September 2011: I have lost 14 pounds and lost 3 inches in my hips, 4.5 inches in my waist, and I am very happy. I have no doubt that I will eventually achieve a “normal” BMI in a healthy way.}

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  1. 4 Responses to “Review of Paul McKenna’s “I Can Make You Thin””

  2. I have read this too and was very impressed. Some really simple, but super useful tips and rules of eating you can start to apply straight away. No fad diet recommendations either so it’s good not just to help you get lean, but to stay lean.

    I’d much rather people read this than the latest celebrity diet.

    Michael

    By The Underwear Body on Jun 23, 2011

  3. Agreed, Michael! There are so many diets out there it makes one suspicious about them all. Enjoyed browsing your blog. I may never look good in my underwear, but I am certainly happy with looking better in my clothes.

    By Matia Bryson on Sep 22, 2011

  4. I have started using the book four days ago and am really enjoying it. However, I am finding that genuine hunger always only lasts for a very short time so listening to my body, I end up eating very small portions of food up to seven times a day, and while I feel great I wonder how to handle simple social situations, like going to a restaurant. I can hardly eat half a starter and then watch my wife, friends or clients eat for another hour… How do you address this sort of issue? I also worry that because enjoying a good meal out has always been such a highlight in an otherwise hectic work week for me, it might be easy to fall off the wagon once the novelty of the system has worn off. Still, for now I am very happy that I have embarked on this system of eating (to avoid the term diet!).

    Lukas

    By Lukas on Mar 9, 2012

  5. I, too, have trouble with the social situations, but for me it’s mainly because I forget to eat slowly and consciously when distracted by the conversation. The good news for you is that if it only happens once a week it should not be a significant problem to your overall results. You could always follow all the old dieting advice about eating in restaurants, e.g., use the take-out box, order off the children’s menu, order a la carte, etc. And it’s true that when the novelty wore off I began to slip (especially over the holidays), but I went back and read the book again and now I am back on track. One thing I was forgetting to do was to grade my hunger on the number scale and when I do that I seem to do better.

    By Matia Bryson on Mar 9, 2012

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