Wednesday, June 10, 2009

My WLS Library

Over the years I've collected a lot of books about weight loss surgery, post-op eating issues, exercise and the mental aspect of WLS. I thought I'd share my library list with ya'll and let you know which books I think are worthy of purchase or at least a trip to your local library.


  • Weight Loss Surgery for Dummies
    by Marina S. Kurian; Barbara Thompson; Brian K. DavidsonThis is considered the "WLS Bible" by many bariatric patients. It will walk you through the process of deciding on the right surgery, picking the right surgeon and clinic and what to expect every step of the way - even what to pack for the hospital. There is also detailed instruction on what to expect after surgery with menu and recipe ideas.

  • Emotional First Aid Kit: A practical guide for life after bariatric surgeryby Cynthia AlexanderI believe this should be required reading for EVERY bariatric patient. The first part of the book walks you through the emotional decisions involved in deciding to have surgery and how to handle the psychological aspects that go along with it. Then the rest of the book deals with the emotions we deal with all along the way. Why we feel certain things and how to handle them when they come up. Its the type of book you can only read in little bits at a time -- I can deal with about 2 or 3 pages, then have to let that lesson mill around in my head for a couple days before I go back for more. Excellent resource!
  • Mindless Eating: Why we eat more than we think
    by Brian WansinkThis is not a WLS-specific book, but it deals with the science behind why we eat. It contains some very interesting information and is eye-opening in many different aspects. If you're not familar with Brian Wansink, check out this interview on YouTube for an overview.
OTHER GOOD BOOKS IN MY LIBRARY (in no particular order)
  • FAT - What no one is telling you (DVD)
    Directed by Andrew Fredericks
    Ok, so this isn't a book, but it's an excellent movie that is a great resource for understanding obesity and how science and the community views it. Being obese isn't about being lazy and eating too much, it's about how our bodies are engineered and the complex nature of the disease of obesity.
  • Gut Feelings: From fear and despair to health and hope
    by Carnie WilsonSinger and songwriter Carnie Wilson tells her story of through obesity and her success and struggles with weight loss surgery.
  • I'm Still Hungry
    by Carnie WilsonAgain Carnie Wilson shares another chapter in her story about WLS. In this book she shares the exact plan she follows every day to maintain her weight loss.
  • Walking - A complete book
    by Jeff Galloway
    I reviews this book in a recent post, but wanted to include it on the master list as well. This is an outstanding resource for beginner walkers as well as those who want to increase their speed and endurance. Excellent information about walking schedules, safety and injury prevention as well as nutrition for exercise.
  • Exodus from Obesityby Paula Peck
    I just bought this book a week ago and have read part of the first chapter. So far I'm loving it since it's packed with statistics and information about the emotional journey of WLS. I'll report back when I finish reading it with a full review.
  • Winning After Losing - Keep off the weight you've lost - forever
    by Stacey Halprin
    I picked this book up at Border's in the bargain book bin a couple weeks ago. I've read the first chapter or two, so don't have a full review. Stacey's story had been an inspiration to me in the past and I'm looking forward to reading her advice on maintaining weight loss for the long term. She's been featured on Oprah and in WLS Lifestyle Magazine so she's one of those well known success stories in the WLS community.
  • Success Habits of Weight Loss Surgery Patients
    by Colleen Cook
    My support group just finished up a chapter-by-chapter review of this book over the past several months. Each chapter outlines a specific habit of WLS patients who are successful in maintaining their weight and remaining healthy after surgery. There's also an excellent "Back on Track" chapter at the end. Some information and statistics are outdated, but still an excellent resource for how to be a success long term.
  • Half-Assed: A weight-loss memoir
    by Jennette FuldaThe Pasta Queen's blog called Half of Me is a site I've been following for a couple years. Jennette has lost 186 pounds through diet and exercise and chronicled her journey on her blog and got a book deal out of it. The book is "laugh out loud" funny in spots and eye-opening and heart wrenching in other spots.
  • Weight Loss Surgery - Finding the thin person hiding inside you
    by Barbara Thompson
    This is a new book in my collection and I haven't read it yet. But I am a regular reader of Barbara Thompson's newsletter and always find her helpful and knowledgeable. I look forward to providing a review once I get a chance to read this one.
  • Before and After: Living and Eating Well after Weight Loss Surgery
    by Susan Marie Leach (founder of Bariatric Eating)
    The first 1/3 of the book is Susan Marie's story of WLS. The second 2/3 is a cookbook with myriad of recipes and shake ideas that are WLS friendly.
  • It Ain't Over til the Thin Lady Sings
    by Michelle Ritchie
    Another book that I've just purchased and haven't read yet. But with so many great reviews and recommendations by other WLS folks, I had to add it to my collection. I'll let you know how I like it once I get a chance to read it.
  • The Body Fat Solution
    by Tom Venuto
    This guy is amazing! The book has nothing to do with WLS, but where else can you find advice on how to lose fat and build muscle than from a professional bodybuilder? I just bought the book, so don't have a review of it yet. But I've read dozens of articles on the web written by Tom Venuto that I have found extremely helpful.
  • Eating Well After WLS Cookbookby Levine, Bontmpo-Saray, Urban-SkurosThis cookbook is designed to take you through early post-op eating to long-term meals. Each recipe has a guide for how much to eat and how to alter the recipe depending on which stage of food you're on (liquids, pureed, soft foods, etc.). The recipes are sort of gourmet and some are complex, but the ideas are excellent and the foods I've made have all been delicious.
  • DietMinder - Personal Food & Fitness Journal
    by F.E. Wilkins
    I don't have this journal, but a gal in my support group does. She had it with her this past week at the meeting and we got a chance to peek at it. If you're the type of person who wants to record your food intake and exercise times ... but would prefer a notebook over the computer, this looks like really great option.
  • WLS Lifestyles Magazine - a quarterly publication that provides in-depth articles about obesity, exercise, bariatric surgery and healthy living. The stories are not fluff, surface pieces - they go into detail and cover every aspect of the subject matter. And outstanding resource. Their website is also an excellent resource where you can read all archived articles if you're a subscriber and keep up to date on the latest media coverage on obesity.
  • Obesity Help Magazine - a quarterly magazine that publishes stories about OH members, their stories and information from medical professionals about WLS. Although it is a good resource, I find that most of the stories in this publication can also be found in one way or another on the OH website. I wish they stories were more in-depth and developed. A fairly good resource for those who might not frequent OH as much as I do, though.
  • Bariatric Times - this publication is a small newspaper-like piece that usually just covers one or two topics in each edition. What is so great about this publication is that because they limit the individual content in each edition you get extreme depth from each issue. I devour the little paper every time it arrives in my mailbox. Their website is also packed with a ton of resources!
  • Micronutrition for Weight Loss Surgery
    by Jacqueline Jacques
    The science-junky in me wants to devour this book. I've heard it's packed with data and statistics and medical stuff. I listened to an interview with Jacqueline Jacques a while ago and couldn't get enough of her information and knowledge. Can't wait to get my hands on this book.
  • Weight Loss Surgery - A lighter look at a heavy subject
    by Terry Simpson
    This is a humorous look at WLS that still presents a lot of useful information about how to be successful. I haven't heard anyone personally recommend it, but the reviews on Amazon look promising. And who can't use a bit of laughter, right?
  • High Protein Cookbookby Eckhardt & DefoydI've heard good things about the recipes in this cookbook. It's not specifically for WLS patients, but is geared toward people who are limiting carbohydrates in their diet.

As you can see I love to read and I'm always on the look out for new books or information. I'll continue to add to this post as I find more valuable resources for WLS patients. As I make my way through the new books I've recently purchased, I'll also add those reviews. Keep this post bookmarked and check back often.
If you have a favorite book you'd like to recommend, please feel free to post it in the comments.


  1. I read "Exodus From Obesity" before I had surgery. Excellent volume on all the emotions involved in WLS. I recommend it highly!

  2. I read "Exodus From Obesity" before I had surgery. Excellent volume on all the emotions involved in WLS. I recommend it highly!

  3. The Food and Feelings Workbook. I am going through this with my therapist since surgery and I have found it very helpful.


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