Starting in her early 20s, Alana Van Der Sluys had three undiagnosed eating disorders.
She recovered from them by reading books and listening to podcasts. Although she recommends seeking medical help for an eating disorder, the books and podcasts helped her.
Since then, the Jefferson resident has become a certified intuitive eating counselor. She is also an English and journalism teacher at Kinnelon High School.
Van Der Sluys will celebrate the launch of her book, “Freedom with Food and Fitness” at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 14 at at Sparta Books.
She and her editor Lydia Stevens of Urano Publishing will speak at the book launch. The author also will read part of the book and will sign copies.
Van Der Sluys is the founder and chief executive of Freedom with Food and Fitness, a company through which she coaches clients on intuitive eating, an approach to nutrition and fitness without dieting.
She started the company a few years after her son was born and after the pandemic, when she felt a pull to help other women heal from what she had gone through.
Van Der Sluys said she always wanted to write a book. It took her five months to write it and another six months to find a publisher. The book was rejected 87 times.
She pointed out that the health and wellness genre is huge and many publishers only want celebrity authors.
In the book, she guides readers through the core principles of intuitive eating. It is filled with personal stories, science-backed research, and tools for the reader to adopt a mindful and intuitive approach to nutrition and fitness.
The book has two parts: one about finding food freedom by rejecting diets and learning about intuitive eating and the second about reclaiming a love of exercise by incorporating movement into routines and letting go of the perfect-body myth.
“I have been speaking on stages at women’s conferences and businesses on how the diet culture saps time, money and energy from women and how to reclaim their resources and reinvest them back into their lives and businesses,” she said.
Van Der Sluys gave a 12-minute TEDx speech at TEDxRutgersCamden in January. In the talk, “Making Health and Wellness Accessible to All,” she called the wellness industry elitist.
Alana Van Der Sluys will read from her book “Freedom with Food and Fitness” and will sign copies at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 14 at at Sparta Books, 29 Center St.
Tickets are $18 and include a book signed by the author.
Light refreshments will be served.
To register for the event, go online to https://forms.gle/GKVJkTnC78R4mP2Y8
I have been speaking on stages at women’s conferences and businesses on how the diet culture saps time, money and energy from women and how to reclaim their resources and reinvest them back into their lives and businesses.”
– Alana Van Der Sluys, author and certified intuitive eating counselor