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Harsh Criticisms of Bright Line Eating (and How They’re Scientifically Unfounded)

I had a lot swirling around in my head while shooting this week’s Vlog. I never use a teleprompter or have any kind of script, which can be a bit daunting at times when I’m discussing important and nuanced topics like the ones covered today: harsh criticisms of BLE and response inhibition. Watch to hear the fascinating way that they intersect.

Podcast Audio

Susan Peirce Thompson, Ph.D. is a New York Times bestselling author and an expert in the psychology and neuroscience of eating. Susan is the Founder and CEO of Bright Line Eating®, a scientifically grounded program that teaches you a simple process for getting your brain on board so you can finally find freedom from food.  Read Susan’s Full Story

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  1. JAMES

    Brilliant! Trust the intelligence and observational abilities of your audience. Harsh “inflamed” (perfectly apt word) critics are as much a phenomenon of dysfunctional social media as anything. BLE has worked for me better by far – by far – than any program. I remember reading the tape on mouth comment and thinking – yeah that’s funny and it makes sense – never thought about it again until I came across the foaming at the mouth critical article you refer to. And I thought as you say its out of context and the kind of gotcha nonsense you see on cable “news”. I want to say disingenuous but there was a sincere manic quality to it. I had a philosophy professor who said many people are sincere but its entirely possible that they are sincerely wrong. And your recommended response is also right on.

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  2. Garland

    When the critics start noticing and commenting , it is a sign of your success. I struggle with my bright lines but have never in my life been able to follow an eating plan for long periods of time . Today I am at day 100.

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    1. Bright Line Eating

      Well done, Garland. Congratulations on 100 Bright days. Proud of you. 🧡🧡🧡

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  3. Laura

    I always do my own research. In fact, I look for red flags on claims, especially with issues concerning finances or health. At its simplest, you can get Susan’s book at the local library or even cull some of the basics online. You don’t need to spend a dime. The bulk of the videos and vlogs are free also. It does, however, behoove a participant to better understand themselves and the science to promote even greater success with weight loss. That being said, I believe all the information she puts forth comes from research, thoughtful investigation and a strong desire to help people with their struggles. All the classes, additional books, seminars, webinars, etc are at your discretion and as you wish. You can subscribe and unsubscribe to emails. Research is an ongoing subject. Any studies postulated must follow strict guidelines accounting for any untoward variables, be able to be statistically measurable, reproducible and come from an epistemologically sound basis of theory. This is a business as well with a structure of proprietary methods and ideas that deserve protection so that it may continue well into the future. It is not a run of the mill boilermaker setup where the modus operandi is flash, grab cash and then crash. The program is a not a one and done deal.

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  4. Shelley

    Excellent and informative! Yes, randomly seeing critics of BLE on the internet is absolutely the right reflective data about obesity and food addiction. Everything else in context is so well balanced revealing fact from trivial fiction or accusation.

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  5. Pat

    I saw the video a couple weeks ago . It’s not the first time a dietician, RD, or psychologist has publicly raised concerns about BLE. While BLE and many of the principles espoused by SPT resonate with me and I have found more success with an abstainer model, I don’t think her cultish “just trust me and don’t watch those bad people” response serves the BLE community in good faith. There are several recurring themes in these critiques that are usually ignored but deserve a better, more honest response from SPT, if not an open debate among experts … the development of new, diagnosed orthorexia/bulimia/binge eating disorders among some BLEers after following BLE, the lack of peer-reviewed and published research on BLE success rate claims long-term and not just after the boot camp, and the financial structure of program commitment. I am especially concerned that BLE has not reached out to understand the experience of former members who have developed serious disordered eating after BLE in an effort to protect members and minimize that risk. Wouldn’t more transparency about these legitimate concerns increase the credibility of the BLE movement and ultimately help more people achieve the food freedom that BLE promises?

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    1. Shellet

      Hello Pat,
      I am not see where you get your stats on the troubles of those who have left BLE for the reasons that you state. Maybe this is because to do this the question of pre-existing food disordered conditions would need answered & most people with food addiction do not seek clinical help. The same can be said for all sufferers listed in the DSM-5. No one really cares or research and money would be spent on solving this obesity crisis or non-crisis depending on your viewpoint. I don’t know how I bumped into this RD dietitian on the internet months ago but she is ridiculous in her claims and attacks, bless her heart. I told my husband and family in the 90s that I am a food addict and they all just laughed at me. Finally I am getting some respect with over 3 years of recovery from food addiction. I agree with SPT. Inaccurate mixed with truth attack websites like this particular dietitian RN are a waste of time for people like me & something more than random hits on those websites send a false message not to mention tilting the scale of free access to information in an unleveling and unfair way towards a population that includes me. I have a degree in the history and philosophy of science and am a secondary science teacher and have lived over half a century so I know what I am saying when I paraphrase Kuhn who says that change in science is absolutely a paradigm shift and one that takes time with naysayers at the beginning until the body of evidence is built to inform the whole science community of the shift in new evidenced based knowledge. That is exactly what BLE is involved with and everyone who does BLE is an adult to be respected who owns all the freedom of choice within an addiction model of obesity. What a gift this is for me in my life and what gratitude I have for this paradigm shift.

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    2. Shelley

      I just sent in a reply but misspelled my name as Shellet. If it is posted please correct my name to Shelley.

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    3. Bright Line Eating

      Hi, Pat! Thank you for watching and for taking the time to leave your honest reflections. We hear you and will consider what you’ve posed in your comment. 🧡

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  6. Laura H

    At the height of my food addiction, every landmark on a major highway near my house was a cue to eat. Even hardware and home improvement stores carry snacks at the register nowadays, With the mention of each business up and down the road, I knew exactly what food products they offered and how to string together an isolated binge. I would actually have “gustatory” hallucinations at night when talking with my partner about specific items and in detail describe the taste of those foods. Nothing else mattered. I won’t go into great detail, but everything about these behaviors smacked of an “addict” on the prowl. I tried the whole intuitive diet thing where you eat what your body wants. I called BS on it right away. I gained 60+ pounds so fast by following the give your body what it wants idea. Even when I would watch television shows that portrayed the horrors of morbidly obese people struggling to save their lives and the litany of medical problems they had, I would get triggered watching the very food they would eat that was ultimately leading to their death and start salivating.
    I always say that you know you are a success when people start to attack your work and lay down the harsh criticisms. Much of internet videos produced on these platforms go for the flash and glitter, not hard science. I am older and have had eating issues most of my life. I have some medical training as well as having followed and participated in alternative medicine over the years. Bright Line Eating is by far the most comprehensive, sensible, and scientifically based structure system for people wanting to regain that area of their life in my humble opinion. Thanks.

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  7. Cindy

    I’m pretty busy making preparations for a big event this week so I haven’t had time to get online and double check but I wanted to talk about some of the scholarly books Susan discussed in this video. As a former high school and public librarian I wanted to share that it may be possible to use a service from your local library called interlibrary loan to obtain copies of some of the textbooks that discuss addiction with regards to food. It’s not easy to do from most library’s websites without a little bit of instruction from the librarian. So you may need to either call your local library to see if the service is available or next time you’re in, go over to the reference desk and discuss the availability of these texts for you.

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You are viewing this website in English and our Membership materials are currently only available in English. We have a goal to translate the Membership into many other languages as soon as possible, but for now, if you join the Bright Lifers Membership, please note that our programs will be delivered in English.

Important note!

You are viewing this website in English and our Membership materials are currently only available in English. We have a goal to translate the Membership into many other languages as soon as possible, but for now, if you join the Bright Lifers Membership, please note that our programs will be delivered in English.

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