With the wisdom of Intuitive Eating, a manifesto for parents to help them reject diet culture and raise the next generation to have a healthy relationship with food and their bodies.
Kids are born intuitive eaters. Well-meaning parents, influenced by the diet culture that surrounds us all, are often concerned about how to best feed their children. Nearly everyone is talking about what to do about the childhood obesity epidemic. Meanwhile, every proposed solution for how to feed kids to promote health and prevent weight-related health concerns don’t mention the importance of one thing: a healthy relationship with food. The consequences can be disastrous and are indistinguishable from the predictable and well-researched impact that dieting has on adults. Weight cycling, low self-esteem, deviations from normal growth, and eating disorders are just some of the negative health effects children can experience from the fear-based approach to food and eating that has become the norm in our culture.
Sumner Brooks and Amee Severson believe that parents want the best for their kids and know a parent’s job is to make them feel safe in the world and their bodies. They want them to grow up to be competent, healthy eaters, living their best lives in the bodies they were born to have. Intuitive Eating is more talked about than ever, and the time is now to make sure parents truly understand what it means to raise an intuitive eater. With a compassionate and relatable voice, How to Raise an Intuitive Eater is the only book of its kind to teach parents what they need to know to improve health, happiness, and wellbeing for the littlest among us.
About the Author
Sumner Brooks is a mom and licensed registered dietitian nutritionist (LD, RDN) based in Oregon who has spent over 13 years working in the field of nutrition and eating disorders. Her experience includes providing nutrition therapy for adolescents and adults, public speaking and pursuing advanced training in trauma-informed, weight-inclusive healthcare. She is also the founder of the online training platform Eating Disorder Registered Dietitians and Professionals (EDRD Pro).
AMEE SEVERSON is a Registered Dietitian (RD) in the Washington State (CD) with a private practice outside of Seattle, Washington. Amee specializes in eating disorder recovery, healing and preserving food-body relationships, and focuses on gender-inclusive and LGBTQ+ affirming care. She is a Certified Intuitive Eating Counselor, and a Certified Body Trust Provider.
Elyse Resch, MS, RDN, CEDRD-S, Fiaedp, FADA, FAND
Author of The Intuitive Eating Workbook for Teens and The Intuitive Eating Journal—Your Guided Journey for Nourishing a Healthy Relationship with Food
Co-author of Intuitive Eating, The Intuitive Eating Workbook, and The Intuitive Eating Card Deck—50 Bite-Sized Ways to Make Peace with Food
"This is what parents need to teach their kids -- and themselves -- especially those who want their kids to be confident, healthy adults."
—Good Morning America
"Parents looking to get their kids’ eating habits off to a positive start will find this a useful resource."
"This informative resource offers compassionate help for parents attempting to build a healthy relationship with food, for both themselves and their children."
"In their deeply detailed, richly nuanced new book, 'How to Raise an Intuitive Eater: Raising the Next Generation with Food and Body Confidence,' registered dietitians Sumner Brooks and Amee Severson offer parents an alternative framework for approaching child feeding that focuses on well-being, not weight."
"I’m so glad this book exists! Sumner Brooks and Amee Severson demystify the process of intuitive eating for kids, explaining how to navigate that essential balance between structure with food and unconditional permission to eat—all from a foundation of inclusivity and body respect. Not only do I plan on recommending How to Raise an Intuitive Eater to many of my clients, but soon I’ll also be using it myself as a new-parent-to-be."
—Christy Harrison, MPH, RD, CEDRD, certified intuitive eating counselor and author of Anti-Diet
"How to Raise an Intuitive Eater is a compelling book that will teach you to identify and heal the wounds of a toxic diet culture. Brooks and Severson provide readers with accessible, well-informed, and evidence-based recommendations to protect and support your kids in developing food and body confidence, deftly presenting what family nutrition books aspire to - strategies parents can use to positively influence their child's today and tomorrow, with simple, actionable steps to help their kids with one of the most important experiences they have every single day - the experience of eating."
—Lindo Bacon, PhD, author of Radical Belonging and Health at Every Size
"If you only ever read one parenting book, let it be How to Raise an Intuitive Eater. That’s how vitally important, wise, medically-sound, and cutting-edge this brilliant book is. A must-read for all parents and any clinician who works with children, eating disorders, or both, this comprehensive classic embodies preventive care by realigning parental good intentions with truly sound skills and philosophies. Children raised with this guide will truly be fortunate. I will be recommending it to everyone I know."
—Jennifer L. Gaudiani, MD, CEDS-S, FAED, Founder & Medical Director, Gaudiani Clinic and Author of Sick Enough: A Guide to the Medical Complications of Eating Disorders
"This is the book I've been looking for forever, both as a health journalist and as a mom trying to raise kids who don't fear and resent their appetites or their bodies the way too many of us were taught to do. Brooks and Severson ask us to go deep and wrestle with our own internalized fatphobia and food fears, to work through the body baggage that most of us show up to parenthood still figuring out. But they also answer all of our practical questions, like what to do about juice, or how to respond when our kids want a snack 20 minutes after breakfast. How To Raise an Intuitive Eater is warm, wise, impeccably researched, and thought-provoking. I will be returning to it often; this book is a must-read for every parent."
—Virginia Sole-Smith, author of The Eating Instinct: Food Culture, Body Image and Guilt in America