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Practical Paleo: A Customized Approach to Health and a Whole-Foods Lifestyle Paperback – August 7, 2012
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"The recipes in Practical Paleo are nothing short of exceptional. I say this without hesitation because I tasted every single dish in this book. Watching Diane cook was inspiring, and I'm proud to say I learned much more about cooking just from being in the kitchen with her. This book will not only feed your brain with knowledge of health, but also nourish your body with outstanding recipes."—Hayley Mason, co-author of Make it Paleo
"Practical Paleo is a gold mine for those new to the Paleo diet or struggling to integrate it into their everyday lives. I've always believed that personalization is the key to long-term success, and Diane's 30-Day Meal Plans will help you achieve just that. Practical Paleo will prove to be a resource I recommend to my patients and online community again and again."—Chris Kresser, LA.c, integrative-medicine practitioner
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Top Customer Reviews
For anyone new to the Paleo approach to health and eating, Ms. SanFilippo's Practical Paleo is a perfect starting place. While the market has seen an explosion of books in the Paleo diet world over the last decade, this book is unique in that is combines the wisdom of the Paleo approach to nutrition with the unique insights that are emerging from the "functional medicine" approach to health.
She provides, for instance, 30-day meal plans that are tailored to specific health conditions, such as thyroid health and athletic performance. There's an especially delightful and informative discussion about gastrointestinal health (including a Poop Pageant in which she describes how stool character can be used to discern digestive problems that left me laughing until it hurt!). The book is packed with beautiful illustrations that make the discussions crystal-clear.
There are also a substantial collection of recipes, most of them unique that I have not seen before, consistent with the Paleo approach. Even readers who have read other Paleo cookbooks will discover many new twists on meals and snacks in this book.
All in all, Practical Paleo is a masterful piece of work.
Diane's poignant and practical definition of complicated concepts, are so very clear to me - a skill she has a knack for unlike anyone I know of in our community. The entire book takes all the ideas you just can't quite figure out, and makes it easily digestible, easy to understand, and absolutely practical to implement.
This book is intended to be used like a reference book, and that's just what it is. From the tailored information on specific conditions (in my case, Autoimmune) to the reference points on leaky gut, carbs and blood sugar regulation, everything you're looking for is here. There's even sections on stress reduction and self care.
I personally followed the Autoimmune protocol defined in the book for 3 weeks. I took seriously Diane's personal challenge to de-stress and followed, exactly, her defined protocol in Practical Paleo.
I added the supplements and nutrient dense foods.
I stuck to the defined foods to avoid and to add.
I left work earlier every day.
I played with electronics less.
I went to bed sooner.
After some serious hair pulling, temper tantrums and screaming about how limited I sometimes felt (thankfully the book has lots of ideas and recipes to make it interesting)... the results are in:
My skin is clearing up! Admittedly, the massive break-outs on the lower half of my face are one of the main contributors for my commitment to eating more cleanly.Read more ›
The meal plans themselves have some oversights. In theory, each meal plan will specifically note what, if any changes need to be made to a recipe in order to make it adhere to a specific health condition and, in some cases, it does just that. In others it's completely overlooked. For example, the autoimmune meal plans uses potato pancakes for several meals which, if you look at the recipe, include eggs. Neither the meal plan nor the recipe itself offer suggestions for how to alter the recipe to eliminate the egg, but still end up with something resembling a pancake instead of hashbrowns. It's not necessarily a huge issue if you keep in mind your "avoid" list, but even though I was pretty certain I understood the protocol, I still went back and forth between the meal plan and the avoid list multiple times feeling like I had missed something.
The formatting of the Kindle edition also leaves something to be desired.Read more ›
The first section of the book, explaining the idea behind paleo (coming not from a "caveman" perspective but from a modern nutrition perspective, which I find more reasonable) and how to incorporate a paleo diet into your life, is very well written, with clear explanations and instructions. The physical book is well put together, suitable for the kind of wear and tear a cookbook gets. And there are lots of colorful pictures and graphics, if that's your thing.
Also, the recipes are clearly written, and not confusing.
And I really like the idea of well laid-out 30-day meal plans.
Ok, now the negatives:
My first problem with the book is that, despite all the talk about eating "real food," most of the meal plans include a dozen supplement recommendations. It seems to me that the most important thing about a diet is that it should provide all of the nutrients you need. Most people switching to paleo (a) want to eat as much natural food as possible, and (b) are already making a fairly substantial change to their diet and lifestyle, so it seems like designing a diet that included more vitamin-rich food would be preferable to telling people to pop a pill.
Second, the meal plans have a few problems. The biggest one is the inconsistent number of servings. It's not really clear from the meal plan how many people the plan should serve. Each recipe indicates the number of servings, but there are also meals based on leftovers, so it's not a direct conversion. Also, despite all of the instructions in the first part of the book about the advantages of eating local/seasonal food, the universal nature of the 30-day plans can render those instructions moot.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Overall the recipes are easy to follow and most don't take a day and a half to prepare (I loath cookbooks where all of the recipes are so involved that they make me tired just... Read morePublished 11 hours ago by Jennifer Trimmier
This is an amazing book, filled with good ideas and recipes. It is an excellent "go to" reference.Published 2 days ago by Amazon Customer
This book has been the BEST cook book I have ever bought. Each recipe has a picture and everything seems to be simple - perfect for week night meals. I love it!Published 4 days ago by Amazon Customer
I went to the book store to review all the Paleo books available and choose this one. I was so surprised when I received it; it is the most concise, accurate and detailed all in... Read morePublished 4 days ago by AT and Smoky Mountain Hiker
I had been told this is one of the best of the Paleo books. Am SO glad I bought it. The sweet potato pancakes are to die for. Have bought another for my granddaughter. Read morePublished 5 days ago by Southerner
Incredible recipes! So glad I ordered this book! I was really running out of foods to eat and got tired of eating the same thing again and again. Read morePublished 5 days ago by Bridget Raab
I'm eating better and feeling better. Most—though not all—of the recipes are good.Published 5 days ago by JohnnyV8