- Paperback: 432 pages
- Publisher: Victory Belt Publishing; 1 Csm Org edition (August 7, 2012)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1936608758
- ISBN-13: 978-1936608751
- Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 1 x 10.9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 3.4 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 2,696 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #36,373 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Practical Paleo: A Customized Approach to Health and a Whole-Foods Lifestyle Paperback – August 7, 2012
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I grew up on a Persian diet so lots of meats and vegetables and rice and moderate amounts of bread, cheese, but also a ton of fruits and salads and the usual sweets all cultures adore. So deep inside, I always craved the meats when I was on vegan or vegetarian diets.
I knew that meat wasn't "the problem". I also knew that certain breads and pastas and noodles and foods in general would give me this heavy feeling after eating, and I wanted to get rid of that once and for all. So when a friend talked about her Paleo diet at length, I jumped onboard without hesitation. My husband and I went Paleo late January and we're in week 8 or 9 as I write this review. This was one of the books she recommended and I love the author and follow her on social media. Here's my review of this book.
4-stars. It is the most comprehensive book on Paleo, giving you every reason and logic behind why eating this way is to your ultimate health and longevity. I felt that she spent a long time - about 125 pages - giving you all the health issues you could develop if you eat gluten and processed sugar and how your body reacts to all of that crap and I read them. She lost me when she was talking about all the biology and anatomy but I followed along and appreciated it.
Then between 125-225 are her meal plans but they won't apply to everyone. She addresses major conditions such as high cholesterol, or diabetics or fibromalagia or other conditions before getting to "Squeaky Clean Paleo" which would apply to you if you don't fall under those conditions (I didn't so this section applied). I'm honestly not sure if I'll follow 30-day plans, which naturally refer to a lot of her recipes. And then finally Part 3 - the recipes section starts on page 225 but first a few lessons on chopping and slicing and cooking essential.
The book is about 400 pages, and my favorite recipe so far is the blueberry cobbler (see picture) but these recipes do look slightly complex. She's also huge into bone broth and sauerkraut which I'll have to see if I make - she has recipes. I love her no-nonsense approach with reasoning and science behind it so if you love nutrition and science, you'll LOVE this book. I am giving it a 4 star even though I highly recommend the book because I wish there were less sections on all the human ailment conditions and MORE on just Paleo - how to eat Paleo, how to make quick easy Paleo foods. I hope this helps and happy Paleo eating!
The food: I decided to try every recipe in order as shown in the meal plan. I discovered that I enjoy some foods that I thought I wouldn't care for (like brussel sprouts and kale chips). My husband and I have enjoyed all of the recipes. I'm not a salmon fan, so it's no surprise that those aren't my favorites.
Does it work? It has for me. I lost 20lbs within a year with weight watchers several years ago and then plateaued. A bit later I was diagnosed with PCOS, which is a hormonal imbalance which can make losing weight very difficult. I counted my calories and was hungry most of the day, because calories-in/calories-out was supposed to work. (Cause it's math!) I went to the gym on my lunch breaks and did cardio... my husband was melting away, no change for me. Very frustrating. I hadn't given up, but I felt like I probably should. This Paleo diet was going to be a shot in the dark and I thought it probably wouldn't work, but it did. I've lost 16lbs in 21 days which has never happened in my life, ever. I eat my 3 meals a day with a little snack here and there, and I'm not hungry. Some days I don't even have a snack, which is very unusual for me. For exercise I'm lifting weights 3xs a week (starting strength program). Days 2 & 3 of eating Paleo kind of sucked. I was tired. Since then, I've felt so much better. I wake up better and sleep better. I've lost fat from my belly which I thought I'd be stuck with forever AND I've dropped a whole pants size. It's nice to finally see something happen after a year of calorie logging with no success.
I hope you buy, try, and it does awesome things for your body too!
The helpful tips (especially about always shopping the perimeter of grocery stores, etc) provide lots of practical guidelines without saying "you must eat exactly these things, cook exactly this way."
The tear-out guides are amazing for when I go to the grocery store each week to shop.
If you follow her general recipes, there is so much you can do to change the taste just by changing the spice combinations and it still tastes amazing (to all the people who complain that her food tastes bland -- have a little creativity and add/change spices to taste; not everyone has the same taste buds). Paleo is typically some kind of meat/protein + some kind of veggies, and if you can get your head around that, the combinations and flavoring options are just about endless.