Low-Carb Dieting For Dummies
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66 of 73 people found the following review helpful
BEWARE LOW-CARBERS: This is NOT a low-carb book. Let me repeat. This is NOT a low-carb book.

If you are livin' la vida low-carb (and I am after losing nearly 200 pounds on it!), then this book will NOT teach you anything about the principles of low-carb. This is indeed disappointing to me considering it is supposedly the official "Dummies" book about "Low-Carb Dieting." What a shame!

An even better "Dummies" book that features a REAL low-carb supporters is "Healthy Carb Cooking For Dummies" by Jan McCracken. Jan is the real deal and shares what it REALLY means to be on the low-carb lifestyle.

Whatever you do, DON'T buy this book if you want to learn more about low-carb living. You might try Jonny Bowden's "Living The Low-Carb Life" instead if you want to educate yourself with the facts about livin' la vida low-carb.

YOU HAVE BEEN FAIRLY WARNED!
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64 of 71 people found the following review helpful
I've read tons of low carb books, and most are really useful. As much as I tend to enjoy the Dummies series in general, though, this book is a bit questionable.

I don't mind at all that Dr. Chauncey has written a diet book - I object that she titled it a "Low Carb" book. She repeatedly refers to this diet as a "Whole Foods Eating Plan" diet thoroughout the book - sometimes 8 times or more on a given page. She is very much pushing her own diet plan, which in many situations conflicts directly with a low carb plan.

In fact she makes many statements *against* low carb dieting, and even promotes some myths about low carb diets that have been disproven by studies. She promotes the drinking of fruit juices, even though most fruit juices have as much sugar (if not more) than soda and few nutrients.

There's little things too. She claims broccoli is America's favorite vegetable when clearly statistics show that is the potato. She says that shopping only once a week is great for dieting, when most people find that shopping for fresh food is best for finding great deals that are healthy. She says to avoid chicken wings, which is mind-boggling since most low carb dieters find this to be the ideal low carb food.

Dr. Chauncey says "don't count carbs in fruits" when fruits are often incredibly sugar-filled. Yes they're fine in small amounts, but gorging on fruit is hardly a pathway to health. She continually says to only "consider vitamin supplements" when there is no way that I know of to get all nutrients you need in a normal daily diet. She explicitly says "microwave ovens are great for vegetables" when studies have shown that microwaving vegetables destroy many of their nutrients.

There are of course some good things in the book. Many of the recipes are quite healthy. She is promoting her own diet which is a mix of low-fat, low-calorie, low-sugar and as a result, some recipes are natural food based and good. But she invents a new green / yellow / red system of coding foods which adds yet another level of complexity to an eating system. The items she puts into each category are not always logical.

She does talk about the importance of breakfasts, and the value of asking for healthy substitutions in restaurants. She talks about how, if you cheat, it's important to simply figure out why you did so and make plans to handle it in the future. She discusses how to arrange your fridge and shelves so that healthier foods are in front, so you're more likely to grab those first.

But again, those items would be mentioned in any healthy eating book. There certainly are other Dummies books on healthy eating. This book was supposedly positioned as a book on how to do a low carb diet, and it spent a fair amount of the book bashing or contradicting the low carb way. This would be like writing a Dummies books on dogs, and then spending a portion of the time talking about choosing cats instead. It just isn't why people would buy the book.

I really recommend that the Dummies crew redo this book with a real low carb writer, and rename the current book to 'Whole Foods Eating Plan for Dummies". That, after all, is what Dr. Chauncey refers to her plan as, over and over again.
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32 of 36 people found the following review helpful
on June 1, 2005
This book is in no way a book about a low-carb diet. It is a Whole Foods Eating Plan, as stated by the author. The only low carb foods the author wants you to eliminate are cookies, cakes, candies and other processed foods with high sugar. This diet allows you 5 carbohydrate food choices every day. How is that low carb??

The one thing I found helpful in this book is how eating less carbs helps you lose weight. It was also interesting to learn about the dangers of eating a very low carb diet.

I would not recommed this book for someone who is looking for a true low-carb guide.
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30 of 37 people found the following review helpful
on January 30, 2004
While this book's emphasis on choosing a whole food diet is commendable, some of the food choices recommended in the book are not just high in carbohydrate, they are dangerously loaded with simple sugars and trans-fats. For example on page 149, the author has breakfast recommendations for the following pancreas taxing and artery clogging foods: Orange juice, oatmeal, raisins, margarine, honey and brown sugar. With possibly the exception of a small bowl of unsweetened, slow-cooking oatmeal, these foods (and many more that the author recommends) are stictly forbidden on most of the popular low-carb programs.
It angers me that I was duped into paying $21.99 for a book that uses it's misleading title to sell itself. I strongly recommend
"The Schwarzbein Principle" and "Protein Power" and the rest of the books in their respective series. While certainly not books for "dummies", they explain how our health can deteriorate on a diet rich in simple sugars and man made fats.
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29 of 37 people found the following review helpful
on January 5, 2004
Chauncey's program encourages dieters to build meals around whole, unprocessed foods. Her "whole foods" plan allows unlimited "Green Light" foods including lean meats, reduced-fat cheeses, and most fruits and vegetables. She doesn't count the carbs in fruits or vegetables (except for those in potatoes, bananas, and a few other "Yellow Light" foods).
Chauncey allows 3 servings of low-fat or non-fat dairy per day, and 5 daily servings of carbs (one carb serving having about 15 grams of carbohydrate). She counts only net carbs, first subtracting grams of dietary fiber.
The book is packed with helpful information, tips (dining out, fast food, buffet tables, what to do if you've gone off your diet, how to figure out if you need vitamins, etc.) and encouragement. The recipes are not complicated (I've only made a couple). The diet is much more traditional than South Beach, Atkins, and so on, but is still designed to reduce your intake of processed, refined carbs. There's no initial restrictive "induction" phase; there are suggestions for moving gradually towards healthier choices.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on September 29, 2013
I can see how the parochial Atkins/Paleo followers would be incensed by this book. I have done Atkins for years and this is really not that different from the later stages of Atkins. It is about watching what you eat and being realistic about your food choices and moving away from processed foods. I mean, if you are totally into whatever plan you are following, why are you bothering with getting another book?
I picked this up curious as to what it entailed, bored to death with Atkins. Yes, it tends toward low fat as well as low carb. Induction was pretty much the only part of Atkins I could follow because it gets way too complicated for me after that. You can't stay on induction your whole life, and Atkins emphasized that point. Even on Atkins you have to start adding more carbs back into your plan "until you start to gain weight" and that is your theoretical limit. Guess what, in the later stages of the plan you are at about the same level this book ends you up with. The fact of the matter is, weight gain is still about calories in/out and lowering carb intake is still reducing calories. Yes, you can eat the green light foods with abandon. As she points out, you don't. But you just don't worry about them.
Like with all diets and diet books, make your choices on what works for you. This looks to be a realistic and easy plan to follow, without all the counting and figuring and worrying and boredom.
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10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on January 28, 2005
The title of this book is misleading. After reading it , I realized what it actually means. A dummy wouldn`t know that the diet descibed in this book is a low-fat, low-cal diet. If you really want to know about the low carb diet, get 'Dr. Adkins`New Diet Revolution' or even 'The South Beach Diet'.I enjoyed this book as much as I enjoy my new beverage of choice. Made from 100% organic soy, taste just like coffee and no caffeine. Finally, I got rid of that wired up feeling all day and feeling great. Look for it on the net by googling "s o yfee".
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on July 19, 2013
It's a good book to help you with a high-protein low-carb diet. I've tried diets and stuck with them religiously, but with no results. This low-carb diet, at first, gave me headaches. Soon after, I found myself eating less, being more satisfied, and having more energy. This diet worked for me!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on January 22, 2014
I have been trying to lose weight for a couple of years...i gave up because nothing came off and Just figured it was my age, menopause, etc. I have seen friends lose weight on low carbs...but like the other diets, I was not interested in counting everything and figure I will put it right back on. I bought this book and immediately liked the approach and thought I can do this. I started in Nov 2013' and as of today have dropped 10.5 lbs. i have not measured in inches, but have gone from a loose size 14 to a loose 10. Pretty good considering there were 2 holidays. I don't deprive myself but I follow the basics and I refer back to the book when needed. It is simplistic and makes sense. The best part, I love it that I no longer have to have a piece of candy or a cookie anymore.....and it was not hard to get there.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on June 19, 2014
This is a great addition to Dr. Atkins Diet Revolution. It's easy to read, easy to follow and full of good ilnformation!
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