I have to admit that I am VERY pleased with the OA literature. Unlike the Weight Watchers books I bought, which are just celebrity ego-fests “written” by the famous people who have happened to lose weight on the WW plan with the help of personal trainers and multiple chefs, they are written to HELP me. I read something from OA books every day to keep myself focused on what is important.
I especially like that almost ALL of the OA literature is available on Kindle:
- The Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions of Overeaters Anonymous: This book was the first book I bought because the first meeting I attended was a Twelve and Twelve meeting. My sponsor and I went through it when she took me through the steps. I don’t find it as inspiring as the Big Book, but it is very helpful.
- Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition: This is the most recent edition of the Big Book. It is written for alcoholics, but it’s amazing the similarities between my worst days of bingeing and the worst days of an alcoholic. My sponsor and I went through this book completely and there are many Big Book meetings in OA. I found it incredibly inspiring.
- Overeaters Anonymous, Second Edition: This is a collection of stories about people with eating disorders and how they came to OA to be helped. Ironically, I don’t find it as inspiring as the Big Book, but it’s still a good read, especially if you’re having trouble getting past Step 1.
- Abstinence, Second Edition: Members of Overeaters Anonymous Share Their Experience, Strength and Hope: This is a collection of stories about abstinence. Because each person defines their own abstinence, it was helpful to me to feel comfortable with my own definition of abstinence.
- For Today: This is a GREAT book. It is arranged by date, with an entry to read every day. I find it incredibly inspiring and the daily quotes are lovely. It also has a great index so you can look up words like resentment or guilt and find entries to solve your problems.
- Voices of Recovery: This is another daily reader, like For Today, that I have loved and read almost every day. Inspiring little stories organized by date.
- Lifeline Sampler: Another collection of stories gleaned from the OA magazine, Lifeline. Inspiring, but longer stories than For Today or Voices of Recovery.
- Seeking the Spiritual Path: A Collection from Lifeline: If you are having trouble with Step 2 and Step 3, these stories are quite helpful. Not many of them are written from an atheist point of view. It was NOT helpful to me. I found The God Gene by Dean H. Hamer to be FAR more helpful on my spiritual journey.
- A New Beginning: Stories of Recovery from Relapse: For those who have found recovery in OA, but “fell off the wagon,” it might be helpful to read these stories about how people found there way back to healthy eating after losing it.
- Beyond Our Wildest Dreams: A History of Overeaters Anonymous as Seen by the Founder: If you are interested in the history of OA and want more than the initial story written by the founder in the Overeaters Anonymous book, here is an in-depth history.
Only OA approved literature is recommended in the meetings because Tradition 6 states, “An OA group ought never endorse, finance or lend the OA name to any related facility or outside enterprise, lest problems of money, property and prestige divert us from our primary purpose.” I don’t have that limitation, however, so here are a couple of books that I have found that are also helpful.
- Food for Thought: Daily Meditations for Overeaters: I love books that have tiny tidbits for me to read every day. That’s what this book is and I find it well-written and inspiring. Not quite as good as For Today, but still very good.
- Letting Go of Compulsive Eating: Twelve Step Recovery from Compulsive Eating – Daily Meditations: This book is another daily reader organized by date. It’s more hit and miss, some days are really good and some are not. If you have trouble with using diet products, you might like this book better than the others.
Daily reading helps me immensely and I am always a better person when I take the time to read. Set a goal of 10-15 minutes of reading every day and you will have an easier ride on this happy road to destiny.
Overeaters Anonymous does not endorse anything on this entry or blog.