The most recommended weight loss books

Who picked these books? Meet our 19 experts.

19 authors created a book list connected to weight loss, and here are their favorite weight loss books.
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Book cover of Unshrinking: How to Face Fatphobia

Travis Rieder Author Of Catastrophe Ethics: How to Choose Well in a World of Tough Choices

From my list on philosophy books for everyone.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a philosopher and bioethicist at Johns Hopkins University, where I teach students and conduct scholarship mainly for my colleagues and policymakers. But my popular writing is driven by the belief that many of the things I find interesting to think and write about are interesting not because I’m an academic—but because I’m a human, and so it’s likely that other humans would find them interesting too. So, while I enjoy dissecting esoteric scholarship as much as the next professor, my passion is exploring important ideas in a format that everyone can enjoy. This has been the goal of my first two books and will hopefully be the goal of many more.

Travis' book list on philosophy books for everyone

Travis Rieder Why did Travis love this book?

I love Kate Manne’s writing. In many ways, her first book, Down Girl, impacted me more, but it was published by an academic press. And my (totally made up, but I’m sticking to them!) rules for this list is that the books must be published with a trade press, so they genuinely intend to do philosophy with everyone.

This is Manne’s second trade book, but it is the work of hers that I found most immediately gripping, personal, and a bit haunting. As someone who has struggled with body image throughout my life and who has come slowly and haltingly to an uneasy truce with my aging and often disobedient body, so many of the stories Manne tells about fatness, fatphobia, and our cultural attitudes about body size hit pretty hard. 

By Kate Manne,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Unshrinking as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.


Book cover of Skinny

Anna David Author Of On Good Authority: 7 Steps to Prepare, Promote and Profit from a How-To Book That Makes You the Go-to Expert

From Anna's 3 favorite reads in 2023.

Why am I passionate about this?

Author Publisher Novelist Memoirist

Anna's 3 favorite reads in 2023

Anna David Why did Anna love this book?

First, let me say that this is not a new book: it came out in 2011. And the author is someone I know. Even though I’m obsessed with her Substack and have loved every essay I’ve ever read, for some reason, I’d never read her books.

I picked Skinny because I liked the title, but the truth is, it doesn’t matter what Diana Spechler is writing—what the plot is, who the characters are—because every word she writes just sings.

This is a novel about a woman whose father dies, and she becomes a counselor at a diet camp because a girl she thinks is her half-sister is one of the campers. But, like I said, the plot is irrelevant. Diana Spechler just has this way of turning a phrase that manages to be hilarious, biting, descriptive, and original.

This book addresses female issues with weight in a way that you…

By Diana Spechler,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Skinny as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

“Skinnywill be my go-to recommendation all year for anyone who wants smart, endearing,beautifully written women's fiction." —Allison Winn Scotch, New York Times bestselling author of TheOne That I Want and Time of My Life

"Spechler…transcends melodrama and clichewith striking sensitivity and delicate touch." —Boston Globe

To escape thegrief she feels following her father’s death, twenty-six year old Brooklynite Gray Lachmann becomesa counselor at a summer camp for overweight children, where she discovers shehas her own demons to battle both emotionally and physically. In Skinny, the ambitious, accomplished, anddarkly  humorous second novel fromreader-favorite Diana Spechler—author of Who ByFire and acontributor to…


Book cover of The Best Life Diet

Milan Somborac Author Of Your Mouth, Your Health: Stop and Reverse Aging

From my list on nutrition from a retired dentist.

Why am I passionate about this?

I retired after 54 years of private dental practice. I hold four dental implant patents and have been awarded fellowships in four honorary dental academies. I've made it a personal mission to use print, radio, TV, and personal appearances to bring into focus the dietary connection between diseases of civilization (excess weight, diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, constipation, diverticulitis, varicose veins, hemorrhoids, deep venous thrombosis, and others) and dental decay which predicts all the others. They account for over half of all hospital admissions and over half of the money spent on health care. Understanding their common dietary origin will allow anyone to prevent, reverse and eliminate any and all of them.

Milan's book list on nutrition from a retired dentist

Milan Somborac Why did Milan love this book?

This for-life approach diet is based on solid science, is easy to follow, and emphasizes exercise in a healthy lifestyle. There is a universal agreement among experts on the issues of a healthy lifestyle. This book simplifies these issues for the layman. Knowledgeable and qualified people hold it in high regard.

By Bob Greene,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Best Life Diet as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Based on the feedback from thousands of readers of The Best Life Dietand subscribers to www.thebestlife.com, Bob Greene has made substantial revisions to his bestselling diet book, including faster weight loss results, the most up-to-date science, more meal plans and recipes, including more no-cook and convenience meals and take-out options, and success stories from readers or bestlife.com subscribers who have been on the diet for a year or more.

In Phase One of the diet, readers will eliminate six unhealthy foods right away instead of waiting until Phase Two. Because they start cutting calories earlier, they'll lose more weight up…


Book cover of Eat to Beat Your Diet: Burn Fat, Heal Your Metabolism, and Live Longer

Laci Barry Post Author Of Songbird

From Laci's 3 favorite reads in 2023.

Why am I passionate about this?

Author Group fitness instructor Mom of two Travel consultant Hiker

Laci's 3 favorite reads in 2023

Laci Barry Post Why did Laci love this book?

Besides being a writer, I am a group fitness instructor who likes to take care of her health. I know a lot about physical fitness but not as much about nutrition. This book taught me the value of the food we eat and the great benefits of eating nutritional foods.

The author breaks down a plethora of different foods, which have healing properties for our bodies for long, healthy lives. I learned so much from the book and am incorporating it into my daily life without dieting. It is literally a life-transforming book. 

By William W Li,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Eat to Beat Your Diet as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The pioneering physician scientist behind the New York Times bestseller Eat to Beat Disease reveals the science of eating your way to healthy weight loss.

In his first groundbreaking book, Dr. William Li explored the world of food as medicine. By eating foods that you already enjoy, like tomatoes, blueberries, sourdough bread, and dark chocolate your body activates its five health defense systems to fight cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular, neurodegenerative autoimmune diseases, and other debilitating conditions.

Now in Eat to Beat Your Diet, Dr. Li introduces the surprising new science of weight loss, revealing healthy body fat can help you lose…


Book cover of The Classic Vegetable Cookbook

Frances Kuffel Author Of Passing for Thin: Losing Half My Weight and Finding My Self

From my list on cookbooks for weight loss and maintenance.

Why am I passionate about this?

I love to cook and it’s difficult to find something beyond chicken and salad when you’re trying to lose weight.  Over the years I’ve assembled a cookbook library that covers many topics (interested in how the Georgians ate green beans? I can help you out!), many of them as off-topic from weight-loss as my cookie cookbook collection. But I still return to what I call “abstinent” favorites, simply because they are so tasty.

Frances' book list on cookbooks for weight loss and maintenance

Frances Kuffel Why did Frances love this book?

Spear goes through the vegetable (and vegetables-that-are-really fruits) table alphabetically, explaining ways to steam, roast, boil, cut, blanche, and dress the plain vegetable, as well as recipes that use the vegetable in fancier ways. I’ve got to get an artichoke and finally learn the finesse.

By Ruth Spear, Grambs Miller (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Classic Vegetable Cookbook as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Gathers recipes for mixed vegetable dishes, rice, stocks, and sauces, as well as vegetables from asparagus to zucchini


Book cover of Intuitive Eating,  A Revolutionary Anti-Diet Approach

Alissa Rumsey Author Of Unapologetic Eating: Make Peace with Food and Transform Your Life

From my list on non-diets.

Why am I passionate about this?

I went on my first diet in high school, a reaction to panic brought on by weight gain (which was a completely normal part of puberty). That first diet led to a decade of yo-yo dieting and food and body obession. It also led me to pursue a career in nutrition and fitness. Six years ago, I came across the book Intuitive Eating, which completely changed my life. Now, as a registered dietitian, nutrition therapist, and certified intuitive eating counselor, I'm passionate about helping people reclaim the space to eat and live, unapologetically. I'm the founder of Alissa Rumsey Nutrition and Wellness, a weight-inclusive nutrition practice that offers virtual counseling, group programs, and online trainings. 

Alissa's book list on non-diets

Alissa Rumsey Why did Alissa love this book?

This is the OG non-diet book, originally published in 1995 by registered dietitians Evelyn Tribole and Elyse Resch, it has since been updated and revised four times to reflect the latest research. The book outlines the 10 principles of the intuitive eating framework, including tips and suggestions on how to integrate intuitive eating into your day-to-day lives. Learn how to let go of dieting, reconnect to your body cues, and build back body trust so that you can follow your inner wisdom to tell you when, what, and how much to eat. 

By Evelyn Tribole, Elyse Resch,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Intuitive Eating, A Revolutionary Anti-Diet Approach as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Since it was first published in 1995, Intuitive Eating has become the go-to book on rebuilding a healthy body image and making peace with food. It shows us that the problem is not us; it's that dieting, with its emphasis on rules and regulations, has stopped us from listening to our bodies. Written by Evelyn Tribole, M.S., R.D., and Elyse Resch - two prominent nutritionists who are the originators of this movement - Intuitive Eating: 4th Edition will teach you:

* How to reject diet mentality forever

* How to find satisfaction in your eating

* How to feel your…


Book cover of The Breathing Cure: Develop New Habits for a Healthier, Happier, and Longer Life

Dan Brulé Author Of Just Breathe: Mastering Breathwork

From my list on breath and breathing.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am one of the earliest pioneers of the Modern Breathwork Movement and recognized as a leading expert and authority in the field. I have been studying and practicing the Art and Science of Breathwork since 1970, and I have published a Breath and Breathing Report every month since 1976. I have traveled to over 65 countries and trained more than 250,000 people, including navy SEALs, first responders, Olympic athletes, psychotherapists, medical doctors, nurses, hospice workers, spiritual counselors, corporate executives, yogis, meditation teachers, and celebrities such as Tony Robbins. I am the Founder and Director of The International Center for Breathwork, and The Breathing Festival. 

Dan's book list on breath and breathing

Dan Brulé Why did Dan love this book?

Patrick is the Ninja of Nose Breathing! He is one of those special people who learned how to pick himself up by his own bootstraps! He healed himself of asthma and has helped thousands of others do the same. His first book, The Oxygen Advantage, was a game-changer. And his most recent book, The Breathing Cure takes the Oxygen Advantage to the next level! It is packed with practical teachings and filled with evidence-based exercises and resources guaranteed to help you improve a host of health issues, including stress, anxiety and panic disorders, snoring, Insomnia, lower back pain, high blood pressure, even diabetes, Epilepsy, and more!

By Patrick McKeown,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Breathing Cure as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The Breathing Cure will guide you through techniques that embody the key to healthy breathing and healthy living. McKeown's goal is to enable you to take responsibility for your own health, to prevent and significantly reduce a number of common ailments, to help you realise your potential and to offer simple, scientifically-based ways to change your breathing habits. On a day-to-day basis, you will experience an increase in energy and concentration, an enhanced ability to deal with stress and a better quality of life.

The essential guide to functional breathing, learn techniques tried and tested by Olympic athletes and elite…


Book cover of Elevation

Peter David Shapiro Author Of Ghosts on the Red Line

From my list on stories built on an inspired premise.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m struck by the narrative elegance of a premise-based novel. Here’s the premise, now what happens? These stories succeed when the premise catches your attention and leads plausibly and compellingly to what the characters think, feel, and do next. Apocalyptic novels are premise-based (apocalypse!) but not all premise-based novels are apocalyptic, e.g., Elevation, Mystic River, and own Ghosts on the Red Line. My experience writing Ghosts on the Red Line has provided me with a good sense of how authors Perrotta, King, Lehane, Miller, and St. John Mandel went about building on their inspired premises to create their unforgettable stories. 

Peter's book list on stories built on an inspired premise

Peter David Shapiro Why did Peter love this book?

Elevation grabbed me from its starting premise until its last memorable scene. A flabby protagonist reveals to a doctor friend that his weight, as shown on his scale, is steadily dropping despite his unchanged appearance. In effect, he is less and less affected by gravity. Because his muscles have adapted to manage his large size, as his gravitational weight decreases he gains disproportionate agility and stamina, to the extent that he becomes a formidable marathon runner which amazes everyone who sees him. He develops close bonds with two women with whom he previously conflicted and they and his doctor friend help him to deal with his situation which becomes perilous as his weight approaches zero. 

By Stephen King,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Elevation as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From legendary master storyteller Stephen King, a riveting story about “an ordinary man in an extraordinary condition rising above hatred” (The Washington Post) and bringing the fictional town of Castle Rock, Maine together—a “joyful, uplifting” (Entertainment Weekly) tale about finding common ground despite deep-rooted differences, “the sign of a master elevating his own legendary game yet again” (USA TODAY).

Although Scott Carey doesn’t look any different, he’s been steadily losing weight. There are a couple of other odd things, too. He weighs the same in his clothes and out of them, no matter how heavy they are. Scott doesn’t want…


Book cover of The Ultimate Weight Solution Food Guide

Milan Somborac Author Of Your Mouth, Your Health: Stop and Reverse Aging

From my list on nutrition from a retired dentist.

Why am I passionate about this?

I retired after 54 years of private dental practice. I hold four dental implant patents and have been awarded fellowships in four honorary dental academies. I've made it a personal mission to use print, radio, TV, and personal appearances to bring into focus the dietary connection between diseases of civilization (excess weight, diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, constipation, diverticulitis, varicose veins, hemorrhoids, deep venous thrombosis, and others) and dental decay which predicts all the others. They account for over half of all hospital admissions and over half of the money spent on health care. Understanding their common dietary origin will allow anyone to prevent, reverse and eliminate any and all of them.

Milan's book list on nutrition from a retired dentist

Milan Somborac Why did Milan love this book?

In its marketing activities, Big Food eectively uses its deep understanding of emotions and eating to put more calories into us. The psychology of overeating is a major focus of Big Food marketing. This book shows how to combine the control of emotional and impulsive overeating with exercise into a lifestyle.

By Phil McGraw,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Ultimate Weight Solution Food Guide as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A companion volume to "The Ultimate Weight Solution" offers advice on strategies for eating out, portion size, calorie count, pantry stocking, and supplements and meal replacements.


Book cover of Hunger: An Unnatural History

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve been fascinated with the science and psychology behind sugar addiction ever since I started graduate school at Princeton University. When I was deciding what to study for my dissertation. I knew my topic needed to be something big, important, and meaningful. At the time, we were starting to hear about the dangers of obesity, and I wondered if it was due to our changing food environment, which had more and more sugar in it. I never would have imagined that this project would lead me to over 20 years of research. Learn all about it in my book Sugarless

Nicole's book list on science and psychology of food addiction from a distinguished neuroscientist and nutrition expert

Nicole Avena Why did Nicole love this book?

This is a foundational book that teaches the basic biology of hunger. I love how Sharman Apt Russel continuously paints a visual for the reader of the physiological processes that occur during hunger and starvation—making it easy to follow and understand.

The best part is Sharman Apt Russel doesn’t stop with the science behind hunger, she discusses the horrific effects that hunger can have on individuals and the entire world.

By Sharman Russell,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Hunger as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Every day, we wake up hungry. Every day, we break our fast. Hunger is both a natural and an unnatural human condition. In Hunger , Sharman Apt Russell explores the range of this primal experience. Step by step, Russell takes us through the physiology of hunger, from eighteen hours without food to thirty-six hours to three days to seven days to thirty days. In quiet, elegant prose, she asks a question as big as history and as everyday as skipping lunch: How does hunger work?