Tiny and Full by Jorge Cruise

Here’s the thing: with Tiny and Full, Jorge Cruise really hones in on a target audience and takes them by the throat: shallow youngish females fascinated with the Kardashians and celebrities and obsessed with supermodel ideas of fit. The hook here is that the tiny waist is a dream goal for beauty for most of that age and he’s going to give research to justify why that should be your goal in life for health. He’ll reverse the recommendations in previous books he’s written on the subject and instead focus on calories and eating less calorie dense foods like candy or rice (e.g., eat more carrots or spinach). Other health and fitness concerns such as leaky gut, flora in the stomach, psychological eating, hereditary ‘big bones’, obsessive eating, etc., are not a concern: only that you control calories and then you will lose weight and be tiny(tm). Because the ideal is a tiny(tm) waist.

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To support his tiny(tm) argument (he uses trademarks throughout for it) we get everything from endless clinical study results to really nifty examples like, hey, being tiny(tm) is sexy because it is in our genes – even cavemen were driven to find mates that were tiny waisted women because otherwise they were diseased or unable to reproduce. And yeah, in building a lifestyle around being Tiny, if you feel beautiful too, that’s ok, because of course he just wants you to be healthy. But if you don’t have a tiny(tm) waist, you are not only not attractive, you are also unhealthy.

I think the problem here is with the whole concept of tiny(tm). I feel like this is a throwback to the 1950s wasp waist that was so desired but not very healthy (nor attainable through simple genetics). And so what we have is a book aimed at young girls with a goal that simply isn’t attainable to some – and not realistic or healthy for others. In an era of anorexia, binging and purging, self loathing, and distorted self perception, no one is ever going to feel tiny. And so no amount of dieting is ever going to get them to feel that they are truly healthy. So why write a whole book justifying that tiny(tm) waists are the only way to ever be attractive to cavemen….er, males.

The horrible psychological ramifications of saying you have to be tiny(tm) waisted to be healthy/beautiful is backed by the same things we see in most diet books of the day: eat more plants and cut down on processed sugar. The core of Cruise’s plan is that plants are not calorie dense – they fill you without giving you calories that cause weight so eat lots of them and be full. The problem with the plan is that one has to become obsessed with calorie counting – and other MDs will likely quote a million more studies where that is a recipe for disaster: obsession about calorie counting is problematic. Let’s not get into the horrific cravings after one is full of carrots and salads but want something with more savory or sweet elements.

The book includes the usual suspects of recipes. There is nothing new here and indeed he seems to have come full circle in the diet world by going right back to the 1950s wasp waist is good and count your calories. The only change is that fat is needed and people should stop obsessing about the amount of fat in good foods like chicken.

I have to admit, I disliked everything about this book. Perhaps because I’m not a young female Kardashians /celebrity gawker who follows the world Cruise inhabits. I really dislike the whole idea that I have to have a tiny(tm) waist to be healthy and there was nothing new in this ‘diet’ book that I haven’t seen before (indeed, Tiny and Full seems to be a “Diet for Dummies” type of book. He’ll probably sell a lot of copies with it. Reviewed from an advance reader copy provided by the publisher.

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This entry was posted in ARC, Book Reviews, fitness/diet, non fiction, nonfiction. Bookmark the permalink.

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