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Women, Food and God and Oprah

Updated on May 23, 2010
Photo courtesy of Alan Light
Photo courtesy of Alan Light

Celebrity endorsement is almost always guaranteed to increase the sales of any product and when the endorsement comes from a celebrity as famous as Oprah Winfrey the guarantee becomes virtually rock solid. Just imagine how good that endorsement becomes when Oprah tells the audience that the book “Women, Food and God” by Geneen Roth “is an opportunity to finally end the war with weight and unlock the door to freedom and I’m telling everyone to read it now."

So who is Geneen Roth. She is the author of eight books including "When Food is Love", “Breaking Free from Emotional Eating”, “Feeding the Hungry Heart”, and “Why Weight? A Guide to Ending Compulsive Eating” . She is well known for her work in the area of emotional eating. She lives in northern California with her husband and apart from writing she has been teaching workshops and running retreats for over thirty years.

Her expertise in the subject has been gained from her own bitter personal experiences. Her obsession with food started early at the age of just eleven and since then she has gained and lost more than one thousand pounds. She has been both dangerously over and underweight and suffered from various eating disorders and followed many different unhealthy diet plans. She has even attempted suicide.

So what is it about this book which struck such a deep and meaningful chord with Oprah. There is certainly some similarity between Roth’s and Oprah’s struggle with weight as we have all witnessed Oprah’s upsizing and downsizing. Oprah now believes that she has now found something which will allow her to leave this losing battle and give her an opportunity to win.

Roth believes that “Women, Food and God” goes to the core all her work and experiences to date and that by dieting we are focusing in the wrong area. Rather than diet she thinks we should be concentrating on our inner selves and working to positively improve our minds and bodies. ”, She thinks that the way we eat is inseparable from our core beliefs about being alive and these beliefs often fuel an obsession with food.” To understand why we overeat, we have to examine how we think about ourselves. Do we think that we are damaged or that we don’t deserve good things to happen to us.?

Roth provides more details about her book in the video below.


Oprah has realised that she has been addicted to food and has used food as a drug to dull her senses and hide from her feelings. She now believes that she has to channel her energies into loving and understanding her real self rather than torturing herself because she can’t fit into a certain size dress. This is because the more you recognize your inner problems, the better your relationship will be with food and your soul. As a result of this you will be happier, and weight loss will occur more naturally.

The video below is a short reading by Roth of an excerpt from her book.

So this book is not a diet plan nor does it tell you what you should or should not eat. It encourages you to experience life and become self aware so that you listen to your body and choose food to eat consciously based on self care and nourishment.

You should
• Eat only when you are hungry
• Eat sitting down in a calm environment which does not include your car
• Eat without distractions such as the radio, television, newspapers, books or music
• Eat what your body tells you it wants
• Eat until you are satisfied
• Eat as if you would be in full view of others whether this is actually the case or not
• Eat with enjoyment, gusto and pleasure

The book has nothing to do with God in the religious sense.  Roth uses this word to explain the longings we have in life and the moments of awe and wonder that we experience.


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    • Amber Allen profile image

      Amber Allen 7 years ago

      Hi jantamaya

      Thanks for your comment. The problem with so many diets is that they don't teach you new eating habits to show you how to eat after you've lost the weight.


    • jantamaya profile image

      Maria Janta-Cooper 7 years ago from UK

      An informative hub. Thanks. Those who want to be slim, must generally change their eating habits. Oprah including. The tips you have written about, would be a part of this change.

    • Amber Allen profile image

      Amber Allen 7 years ago

      Hi Audrey

      I agree that Oprah has enlightened us on many topics. I'm pleased you enjoyed reading the hub.


    • vocalcoach profile image

      Audrey Hunt 7 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      I enjoyed this hub on Janeen Roth's book and the videos too. I am an Oprah fan and think she has enlightened many of us on various topics. Thanks a bunch. Rated a big thumbs up!

    • Amber Allen profile image

      Amber Allen 7 years ago

      Hi katie

      Oprah is one of the most famous yo-yo dieters I can think of and my own view based on minimal information is that her weight problems stem from some type of emotional problem. Perhaps she feels unworthy of the successful career she has built. If she loved to eat and didn't care she wouldn't keep dieting.

      The problem with food is that it comes with a lot of baggage, like being rewarded for clearing your plate, being given chocolates for being good.

      I also think that it is a type of addiction which is very difficult to treat. You can't stop eating food and you can't avoid it.


    • katiem2 profile image

      katiem2 7 years ago from I'm outta here

      Its amazing how good Oprah looks thin and then she gains so much weight so quickly. She really needs to deal and heal, she's still stuffing something down, or maybe she just loves to eat and doesn't care. It's a matter of what you love more food or feeling thin and fit.

      I also think people eat because it's an act of taking care of someone, nuturing and caring for others. Many people feel a void and uncared for so they feed themselves and feel nutured, cared for and loved. Just saying.

      Thanks for the great article Women Food and God and Oprah. Very moving and powerful stuff. Peace :)

    • prettydarkhorse profile image

      prettydarkhorse 8 years ago from US

      What oprah says, people follow it, one of them is me, myself hehe

      Ms Amber, I have a favor to ask, -- I was so glad I joined the contest cooking at HP and one of my hub was again chosen as a potential winner for weekly, I would like to ask if you havent voted yet, please consider it -- thats the link and my hub is Cooking Technique in Noddle Soup by prettydarkhorse, number ten choice, if not just tick on your choice, best and thanks always, Maita

    • Amber Allen profile image

      Amber Allen 8 years ago

      Hi Don

      I agree stress is a often at the heart of a lot of our bad eating habits. When under pressure our brains can send our bodies some strange messages.

      I'd not heard about the Weigh Down Workshops. I think that keeping your mind busy can help but it doesn't always work for me.

      Thanks for taking the time to read my hub and for your interesting comments.


    • Don Simkovich profile image

      Don Simkovich 8 years ago from Pasadena, CA

      I can relate to the idea of eating when stressed out. It often happens late at night, I'll eat while thinking about a problem - usually one quite serious - I'll eat a bit, begin to feel badly and eat more. I've heard of Weigh Down Workshops in which participants replace going to food with memorizing a Bible verse. It's also about momentum for me. Once I start heading in a positive direction, the momentum builds and I can remind myself to stop . . . wait . . . and turn away from a snack I don't need. Thanks for writing the Hub.

    • Amber Allen profile image

      Amber Allen 8 years ago

      Hello James

      You are very lucky not to have to worry about what you eat and just be able to enjoy the pleasure with the odd glass of red wine to aid the digestion! Thanks for commenting.


    • James A Watkins profile image

      James A Watkins 8 years ago from Chicago

      I don't think about food, I just eat it. Food is a great pleasure in my life. I do eat primarily healthy food though. Food that makes me feel good and pleases the senses. I've known plenty of women with serious food issues. I hope they get over it. Thanks.

    • Amber Allen profile image

      Amber Allen 8 years ago

      Hi wrenfrost

      I'm so pleased you found my article fascinating. Thanks.


    • wrenfrost56 profile image

      wrenfrost56 8 years ago from U.K.

      I remember when Oprah raved about 'the secret' and alas it sold like hot cakes. She is indeed an influencial woman and I can see this book experiencing the same success as a result of her endorsement. Another fascinating read Amber. :)

    • Amber Allen profile image

      Amber Allen 8 years ago

      Hi Jill

      Thanks for reading and commenting. Oprah is a strong woman but I think it is the vunerable side which we see from time to time that draws us to her.


    • Amber Allen profile image

      Amber Allen 8 years ago

      Hi Art

      It's alway lovely have you pop by and leave your kind comments. Food does seem to be able to fill an emotional hole, if only for a short time. Separation is such a painful experience especially when there are children involved but you do seem to come to terms with this experience and your heart attack. We want you around for a long long time so make sure you take care of yourself.


    • jill of alltrades profile image

      jill of alltrades 8 years ago from Philippines

      What an interesting Hub about food and the struggles of Geneen Roth. What an interesting book title too. Those are very sensible advices on food.

      I like Oprah. I think she is a strong woman. You are right, any endorsement from her is usually a plus.

      Thanks for sharing this Amber.

    • profile image

      TattoGuy 8 years ago

      Always loves to see a new hub from moi lil Amber, I am a terrible comfort eater and have actually cut out nighttime snacks which i was eating a lot after my seperation. But I had to nip it in the bud because of my heart attack, deff dont want another one, really helpful hub, nice one Amber xo

    • Amber Allen profile image

      Amber Allen 8 years ago

      Hi anginwu

      Thanks for the vote of approval. We should all give ourselves more time to appreciate the finer things in life of which good food is just one.


    • Amber Allen profile image

      Amber Allen 8 years ago

      Hello prasetio

      I don't watch Oprah very much but I like her a lot. I think she is a very genuine person. Your kind comments and rating up are much appreciated.


    • Amber Allen profile image

      Amber Allen 8 years ago

      Hi mega

      I couldn't agree more - it is so difficult to resist temption when it is right under your nose.Thanks for popping by.


    • Amber Allen profile image

      Amber Allen 8 years ago

      Hi Pam

      I'm so pleased you found this interesting. I agree that forgiveness has an extremely important part to play in addressing emotional trauma. It is very difficult to move forward when you are stuck in the past.


    • anglnwu profile image

      anglnwu 8 years ago

      Thanks for the thumbs up. I'm not an Oprah fan, just because I never have time to watch TV at that hour but I love the advice you so cleverly condensed for us. I agree--food should be enjoyed without the distraction of TV, text messaging and we should enjoy our food, without using it as a clutch for life's problems. Rated up!

    • prasetio30 profile image

      prasetio30 8 years ago from malang-indonesia

      I am one of the Oprah fans. And I think this book become great inspiration for woman. We all know that food was the important thing in our life, we can't survive without food. But how to maintain eating pattern was the most crucial problem for many woman. I liked your final statement, that was great tips for us, very useful. Thumbs Up for you, Amber. Let me rate this hub. Thank you very much.


    • mega1 profile image

      mega1 8 years ago

      We sure are fascinated with weight and the only thing I never hear people address is the plentitude of food and especially rich, fattening foods - the way they are so readily available. I keep telling myself I will not buy these things and if they're not here, I won't eat them. I need to have someone else doing my shopping for me, I guess! this does sound like a very good book! thank you

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 8 years ago from United States

      What a very interesting hub. I think the suggestions at the end of the hub absolutely help with weight control. I also think resolving old emotional traumas with forgiveness of others or maybe of yourself depending on the situation is helpful as you will like yourself better and feel more at peace. Good hub.


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