Book Review: The Dorm Room Diet


Include me with those skeptics who usually dismiss most diet claims as faddish or too good to be true. Personally, I haven’t had to resort to dieting to lose weight, but I know many people who have. Most of those people are frustrated, tired and still hungry.

When the opportunity came for me to read Daphne Oz’s revised and updated copy of “The Dorm Room Diet” I agreed to do so, in part because the title intrigued me. My mind was filled with the picture of a somewhat overweight co-ed hunkered down in her dorm room, scarfing down some dark, rich dessert she had slipped in her handbag just before leaving the school’s dining room. Yes, that may not be an accurate picture as many guys struggle with weight while they are at college too.

Family Lines

First published in 2006, The Dorm Room Diet (2010 | Newmarket Press) is from the perspective of a one-time university student and 2008 Princeton University grad. Oz’s father and grandfather are both cardiac surgeons while her mother and grandmother are holistic nutrition advisors. As you might imagine Oz had a readily available pool of medical talent to draw upon when writing and later updating her book.

The centerpiece of Oz’s book is explaining how students can avoid the Freshman 15. Honestly, until recently I had never heard that term, but had it explained to me by someone “in the know” as representing the average weight gain of a first year college student. Seems that students, freed of parental constraints and lacking discipline, end up taking in way more carbs than what they need. The result is unwelcome and often unhealthy weight gain.

Smart Tips

To counter the urge to go crazy with overeating, drinking and other bad habits, Oz covers ten steps students can follow to keep their weight under control. The revised copy also adds a chapter about what Oz calls “conscious eating” and recipes that can be prepared in the dorm room or kitchen.

Among the guidance and advice Oz offers is her own story of struggling with her weight as a teen. Unlike most students, Oz lost weight when she got to college, but that came about because she learned to avoid emotional eating, snacked smartly, kept with an exercise regimen, took her vitamins and supplements, controlled her mood and did some of her own cooking.

Explicit Details

Oz gets quite graphic at times by describing in detail what your “poop” should look like. Sounds strange, but what goes into you should come out in a certain way. If not, your diet probably needs to be changed.

So, who will like this book? Co-eds mostly. The pink cover and Oz’s friendly chatter is definitely girl-to-girl though I wouldn’t be surprised if a few guys find the pointers helpful even if they have to hide their copy from their friends.

Adv. — Are you short of funds this semester? A Sallie Mae Smart Option Student Loan can help you cover your costs and ease the weight on your shoulders.


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Categories: Book Reviews