by Vera Tarman & Phil Werdell
Read by Lisa Bunting
Is it possible to be addicted to food? When does indulging in 'comfort' food become substance abuse? Is it possible that there is more than a lack of will power at work when someone can't stop eating? In Food Junkies, Vera Tarman and Phil Werdell explain what is - and isn't - food addiction, tackling this complex and poorly understood problem through the stories of many survivors and from the perspectives of medical researchers/practitioners. They break down the science behind the research so that anyone can understand it, and take a fresh look at obesity, overeating, binge eating, anorexia and bulimia. For people struggling with these issues — and their families — recognizing the condition is the first step to gaining the kind of support and advice they need.
Food Junkies (finalist in the 2016 Voice Arts Awards) offers hope and guidance. Read by Lisa Bunting, according to one audible customer review, her "calming voice assists with decreasing the shame so often found with addiction and can open the listener up to actually hearing," while another noted the audiobook version "brought the science to life in a different way than the book. It made it even more real as one can't 'skim' or 'rush' through the life-changing content."
1. How would you spend ten thousand bucks?
I would set up a start-up fund or put it into promotion for funding a treatment center for food addicts. $10,000 isn’t enough money to open one, but it would be a start. I no longer am in a position where I need the money or would spend it on myself. Certainly, in the past I would have got an upgraded computer or better furniture or flashy clothes but I don't need these anymore. I would put it towards one of my food addiction ventures.
2. Where do you get your best ideas?
Sleep. I read a great deal and I have learned to use my ‘off time’ to let my right brain ruminate, germinate, and then I hunt through my intuitions and dream-like states in the morning. There is a lot of good stuff there for writing, speeches, etc. It constantly amazes me. I wish I could sleep better to access this mine of gems.
3. What comes first, the plot or characters?
Plot. What do I want to say? I need to know what I want to say, how to develop the ideas, what illustrations will work best. The voices – characters – aid in this primary design. I like the idea of characters but to work with them first would be too elusive for me. They slip out of my fingers. I am a very practical person, so I need a road map first ie what is my message, how do I say it? And then, I let the voices come out of me, towards that aim.
4. What does your main character do that makes him/her special?
My main characters, or the people that I choose to tell my message, have to firstly have integrity and a willingness to share their experience openly. I learn best by hearing the raw truth from people. But I also need to hear a message of hope and redemption. I need to hear that hope is possible. Otherwise, what is the point? We suffer enough without reason…. I don't drown with the character. I am not interested in the drama unless hope is also possible.
5. What is the sweetest thing anyone has done for me?
I have experienced many ‘sweetness’s’ from people. Usually it is the act of doing simple things that show consideration of me ie remembering something about my life, not giving me a hard time about my food plan, offering to walk my dog. Putting up a positive review of my book on Amazon!
Maybe the sweetest thing was when an elderly patient willed me enough money to buy my first dog. I have always wanted a dog but could not justify the expense. When I heard that she had left me enough money so that I could finally the dog, I thought this was the best way to acknowledge her gift – a sweet dog to her sweet gift.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Vera Tarman is a medical practitioner who focuses on addictions. She is the medical director of Renascent, an addictions treatment centre. Dr. Tarman conducts workshops and speaking engagements on the science of food addiction and "comfort food" abuse. She has reached audiences across the world. She lives in Toronto.
Phil Werdell is a recovering food addict, a social work clinician, and an educator. He is the primary organizer of the Food Addiction Institute and the International Society of Food Addiction Professionals, and is Director of ACORN’s Professional Training Program. Phil currently teaches Addictions Studies at Springfield College, School of Human Services, Tampa. He lives in Florida.
Lisa Bunting is a stage, screen and voice actor, drama instructor, audition coach, and professional skills development simulator. For Post Hypnotic Press, she has narrated the non-fiction self-help titles The Woman Who Changed Her Brain, The Remarriage Blueprint, Voice Arts Awards-nominated Food Junkies and the forthcoming i-Minds. She was named Best Supporting Actress at LA’s Focus International Film Festival, Winter 2015. She is a member of Canadian Actors’ Equity and ACTRA.
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