The Biggest Challenge You Face in Writing a Health, Nutrition, Fitness or Dieting Book


Writing a book – particularly a nonfiction book – can be hard work at any stage of the process. But when writing a health, nutrition, fitness or dieting book, the pre-writing process might involve the hardest work.

That’s partially because it first entails becoming qualified to write a health, nutrition, fitness or dieting book. Regardless of whether the author in question is formally educated or entirely self-educated, there’s a lot involved…

Hours and hours of research. Hours and hours of studying. Hours and hours of testing. And potentially hours and hours of exercising.

Then, after all that’s over years and years later, there’s still one pre-writing step that must be taken. It’s not nearly so time-consuming, but it’s still exceptionally important (and more than a little bit of a headache).

There’s a billion health/dieting books out there already. What’s so great about yours?

The health, fitness, nutrition, diet book category is very unique in that there’s no point in reading dozens of them. Readers either find one that works beautifully for them, or they get discouraged and give up.

There’s also the problem that so much health, fitness, nutrition and dieting information can be found online. So you need to have some unique or otherwise very catchy angle to make yours stand out.

You can have the most effective diet ever. But calling it “The Most Effective Diet Ever” isn’t enough to sell it. That’s been claimed before with un-guaranteed levels of success.

You need something else to boost it above and beyond the over-saturated market you're automatically diving into. So let’s consider the different angles that have pushed previous health, nutrition, fitness or dieting books to mass market appeal.

There was Atkins and the South Beach Diet, both of which promote the idea that our bodies operate best when our carbohydrate intake is severely limited. As it turns out, that may very well damage your thyroid, but I doubt that information was widely available at the time. So we won’t blame them for it.

What we will focus on is how nobody else had tackled that topic in a book before Atkins came about. Therefore, it was able to broadcast an extremely unique way of approaching weight loss.

South Beach Diet, meanwhile, was more opportunistic in that it piggy-backed onto an already existent craze. Getting in at exactly the right time, it told weight-loss wishers that if they’d already tried Atkins and failed, they could much more easily succeed with “Atkins 2.0.”

That makes it somewhat sneaky but nonetheless effective considering how intense Atkins can be.

Angle acquired. Success achieved.

Or consider the following:

  • Paleo – the idea that we’re better off eating like cavemen… which is automatically compelling in a technology-obsessed and exhausted world.

  • The 5:2 Diet – telling people they only have to seriously restrict their eating habits twice a week instead of every single day for months or the rest of their life… How could that not be catchy?

  • Zumba – who doesn’t love dancing? It’s fun! Anything it touches is fun! Ipso facto, turning it into an exercise routine is fun!

  • The 7-Minute Workout – Nobody has time to workout, right? There are just too many things to do in the day with only so many hours to do them in. But if that workout is only seven minutes...

On the plus side, there are plenty of other examples of such nationwide or worldwide crazes to analyze as examples. On the negative side, that means a lot of ground has already been covered.

Moreover, you need to be able to present it in a way that makes people want to buy the whole book instead of just look it up online.

Talk about hard work!

It’s all part and parcel when writing a health, nutrition, fitness or dieting book. Though, clearly, if you’ve gotten far enough to be contemplating it in the first place… You’re more than up for the challenge.

Good luck!

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