on May 26, 2009
I am not an overweight person but I'm not thin either. I am in the normal weight range for someone of my height. That said, I am only 5'1" tall so for me, gaining even 5 pounds makes a big difference. I got this book not because I wanted to get skinny overnight, but rather, learn why, after 18 years, I can't seem to lose these last 15 pounds. I eat right, exercise moderately and drink plenty of water. So why do I have these love handles and why do my thighs rub together when I walk?
For me, having an extra 15 pounds on my frame means the difference between having PCOS or not. It's enough to slow down my metabolism and cause me to gain even more weight. It's enough to make exercising painful. It's enough to make me feel tired all the time. I've tried diets and exercise but I always gain the weight back. It seems my body is set at staying this weight, no matter what I do.
Now, after reading The Gabriel Method I understand why my body is holding onto these extra 15 pounds of fat. All of the lifestyle changes I made in the past were physical, none were psychological. I realized that the change has to happen in my mind for it to happen in my body. I am seeing amazing results so far and I've only been using the method for a month. The first week my appetite reduced and my thirst increased. The second week I began feeling better about my body and gaining confidence. The third week I began exercising regularly. I've never been this consistent with my workout routines. (I now run 4-5 times and week and will begin swimming soon.)
I've learned why depriving myself of the foods I love can backfire in the end. I learned why diets don't work. I learned why counting calories doesn't work. I've learned to love my body. And best of all, I've learned patience. I was so desperate to lose weight before, I would give myself a deadline and I'd torture myself with dieting and exercising and when I didn't see the results I wanted quickly, I'd give up. Now I understand this process is going to take time. I'm not going to expect immediate results. I tell myself that I will see the body I want in a year's time. I have a clear picture in my mind of what that will look like. I could not see that image before, and that explains why I failed so many times.
The mind is a powerful thing. If your personal philosophy is: "If you can imagine it, you can achieve it; if you can dream it, you can become it", then you will love this book!
This book is essentially the theory and practice of a healthy, non-diet way of living that will actually lead to greater weight loss than even healthy diets. The main tenet of The Gabriel Method is that the body will not lose weight until it is ready; that is, until you (and it) feel safe. So it's really important to find ways to help your body feel safe, and then weight loss will naturally occur.
The author emphasizes visualization as a part of this; he strongly suggests (although it's not absolutely necessary) that you use his own CD for this, which is sold separately from his web site. He emphasizes lots of ways of eating healthfully, but stresses that these need to happen by following the body's needs and listening to your own body, as opposed to forcing anything. He also emphasizes things like forgiveness, and other types of self-care.
What I think is unique about this book is that it is a comprehensive approach to the anti-diet mentality. I am already following this, and have found it is the only way I can healthfully and sanely lose weight. However, this book was still of value to me as it added really good tips--like the importance of visualization, and reminders of noticing the life force of food, and much more. I liked the author's style of writing and found it encouraging and motivational.
For anyone who diets, please read this. Especially if you are a yo-yo dieter, I think you will appreciate this book. And if diets HAVE NOT worked for you in the past, and you don't know why, this book is an absolute MUST READ.
on March 28, 2009
Mr Gabriel was interviewed on Coast to Coast radio towards the end of February 2009. I bought his book on February 25 and read it. There were some thoughts in the book that really stayed with me and I incorporated them into my daily routine. I decided to give my body the nutrients it needed before eating anything questionable and to do some visualization. I did not use Mr Gabriel's CD but just did it on my own. I did not think I was doing much different than I had been doing before reading the book, however when I weighed myself on March 23 I was very surprised to find I had lost 10 pounds. Thats better than I did when I spent over $300 on a well known food program that provided some really nasty tasting packaged meals and left me constantly hungry. I am rereading the book and plan to download Mr Gabriel's visualization too.
on July 29, 2009
I have a graduate degree in nutrition and extensive knowledge of nondiet approaches, including Shapedown, Intuitive Eating, and Eating Competence. That said, I believe we all have our own inner wisdom and should follow what works for our own, unique bodies. So this review is my own personal view. It doesn't mean I bow to the USDA or don't have a critical thought in my head, it's just my review of the book (which I liked).
THE BABY: Gabriel's book has some wonderful qualities, including the visualizations, which I find to be a missing link in many nondiet approaches to weight management. He also gets the reader to "add in" healthy foods rather than "restricting out" foods that they see as "forbidden." This is something I've always preached and agree with wholeheartedly. His take on the dynamics of dieting and emotional starvation are spot on.
THE BATHWATER: Although he has "notes" and citations at the end of each chapter, don't get caught up in some of the nutritional assertions he makes. Pasteurizing milk does not "denature" the calcium in it. Calcium cannot be denatured... it's a mineral, not a protein. The calcium in any milk is just fine. Eating foods in a specific order is also unfounded. He says that meat requires an acidic environment, where milk and starch require alkaline ones... well yes, no, and it doesn't matter. Protein (from both the meat and milk) is digested first in the acidic environment of the stomach, and then in the alkaline environment of the small intestine (the pancreas shoots in bicarbonate to neutralize the stomach acid). Sugars and starches are primarily digested in the small intestine. The key: your stomach is like a blender, and all the nutrients are in one big glob. You have mroe enzymes than you can shake a stick at, and they only recongize the nutrient they're trying to break down, be it protein, carbohydrate, or fat. There is no reason to eat foods in a particular order or at separate meals.
He also asserts the aspartame causes an insulin response. This is based on a small study (that he doesn't cite, but it's the only one I could find) from 1988 on a handful of type 2 diabetic patients. The insulin peak was no different than with the unsweetened product, and the area under the curve was slighly greater.
I could go on (and on, because he really does make some outlandish nutritino claims) but you get the idea. He makes some mistakes, as so many authors do, by not consulting with experts in areas with which he's not familiar enough. He relies on "it sounds good, and makes sense."
NOT THROWING THE BABY OUT WITH THE BATHWATER: There is so much about this book that is excellent, just not the nutrition information (other than eating whole, healthy, unprocessed foods). I suspect Jon Gabriel will correct some of his errors in subsequent editions of the book. I hope the next edition will be even more grounded in science, as there is a LOT in this book that is uncited. It's a red flag for me, as the citations he does give are often news articles or simply "notes" that are his opinions. I'm concerned that some readers might see the smattering of citations and swallow the whole shebang without a critical eye.
THE BOTTOM LINE: A good read for those struggling with weight issues, although there are other similar books grounded in science. Simply take the nutrition information with a grain of salt. No pun intended.
on November 2, 2009
I love reading the few negative comments, "haven't read it but he's wrong...calories in calories out....diet and excercise...just too woo woo for me....when I saw the part about all the supplements??????????????????Jon is almost anti-supplement!
Let me tell you, it works. My wife and I have been trying to lose that last 20lbs for years. I can't tell you how great we feel now, and guess what? I still drink too much beer, eat a bacon cheeseburger when I want one, or pretty much anything I want, and did it by adding what my body needs to tell it it is OK. Visualization and positive attitude are a must. If you are the kind of person that writes a negative review on a book you haven't read and a diet you haven't tried, an expert that sticks his nose up in the air because that's not what SCIENCE has taught us, or so closed minded that you can't realize what a huge part belief plays in who we are, yet can be changed very easily through positive meditation, please do not buy this book. Jon is not a doctor or scientist, he went to those guys and got fatter, their wallets did too. He believes that which serves him and works for him. How do your negative beliefs serve you? They don't. Maybe someday you'll get to tell all of us skinny people "I told you so, Jon was wrong about ___________." Have fun being fat then. You can be right and fat, and that's OK.
It truly is not a diet of "I cant's." You must get what your body NEEDS to shut off the fat storage and stop the cravings for empty calories. The trigger to switch this off is nutritional(good healthy lipoproteins and real food)and what you believe about yourself. 3-5 times a day you must have good assimilable proteins (not soy or heavily processed meats) with healthy raw fats and live raw uncooked produce. You need digestive enzymes and probiotics for proper digestion because these things are no longer existent in our food. That's his only supplement recommendation. Of course you need to avoid fast sugars and carbs, in favor of ones that hit the bloodstream slower. Do a little research on the glycemic index. Probably want to dump that Big Gulp out. He says get out in the sun each day which we only see 4 months a year where I live, but I supplement vitamin D which I believe, and science is FINALLY coming around to is absolutely vital. When you do these things the crazed food cravings are gone. I can't even stand the smell of a deep fryer anymore. I still like my pizza and beer, yet my wife and I weigh what we did at 18. After our kids were born we were both overweight but not obese, and diet and exercise never got rid of the last 20 lbs. The only other thing to do is VISUALIZE. Get a picture of you at your best weight or someone of your body type you admire and see yourself looking like that every day in your mind. Its that easy. Yes this is a simple book. It ain't hard! Yes it may go against somethings you believe, but isn't that the problem in the first place! Would you rather be fat and right, or skinny and wrong. Believe what serves you.
Diet and exercise is BS and if any of you professionals out there are telling your obese clients to start a rigorous exercise program like the big boys I see at the gym, stop it. Walking to and from your car at work for an obese person is a LOT of exercise. If you don't believe me put on a hundred pound pack and give it a try all day. You are begging for an injury setback when you do this. Go for a long walk everyday, do low impact stuff sure, but save the aerobics for when you feel good, strong and able. Diet restrictions just make your body even more sure that it needs more fat, and causes you to crave anything that will accomplish that. When your body needs air you breath, when it craves salt you go nuts with the salt shaker, and when it wants to store fat you wake up in the middle of the night with chocolate cake all over your face. Your body will get what it wants every time. Pushing diet and exercise is humiliating to an obese person, if you really believe that nonsense, just tell them "hey you are a crazy glutton and a sloth you lazy pig" because that is what it really means. You need to feel good about yourself to lose weight, and this book and CD set will be a revelation for you.
I think that most of what he says about diet has been known by some for a very long time, but didn't get mainstream because there really isn't any money in it. Dr. Johanna Budwig had huge success over 50 years ago with cancer patients and other serious illness. Primarily fat free cottage cheese whipped up with flax oil and freshly ground flax seed and live food. This is the bricks and mortar of what your cells are made. You get sick when your body makes retarded cells out of that potato bacon bomb you just ate. Why have you never heard of this? Nobody could make any money off it. Instead we have the colossal failure of allopathic medicine. You know what the best vegetable protein/fat combo in the world that you can entirely live on is? Hemp seed! It's more legal to grow stoner weed in your yard in some states than it is to grow industrial no-THC hemp producing the most perfect human food known, and importing it adds massively to the costs. Wake up people. Healthy lipoproteins (omega 3/6/9 in the proper proportions bonded to proteins containing all of the essential amino-acids)and daily vitamin D, and something real, live, from the produce section. Stop living on soda pop, and get something without an ingredient label, cause it is what it says it is. Then go eat a chocolate cake or a potato-bacon bomb if you still want that. Your body won't store it anyway, and the energy might make you go for a walk. When you are at you're ideal weight you'll find that you just don't eat that much anymore, and food ain't runnin' your life anymore. If you can't figure out how to do that give up. The rest of you, go buy this fantastic book and get started. Change your life. Whew.
I need a beer.
on March 22, 2011
I bought this book after failing yet another diet. Crushed, dismayed, and depressed, I went back to the drawing board looking for a way to lose weight. It was ALL the same! Avoid some sort of food, eat less of everything, exercise and lose weight. If that really worked, I'd be super model thin by now! So I gave up. Then I hurt my back and couldn't do anything for a few weeks while it healed. I pretty much sat around using my laptop and surfing the web when quite by accident I came across an ad with this guy on it who claimed to go from over 400lbs to like 180lbs. The thing that intrigued me about this particular ad was that the before and after guy looked like the same guy(as opposed to the slimgenics ad where the person not only lost weight but grew taller and changed hair and eye colors). So I was a bit skeptical. I did a little research and still didn't find too much out there saying it worked or didn't. I didn't want to pay the $49 or whatever for the set on the website so I looked on Amazon for the book and saw that it was just $9.49. I spent more than that on a pack of slimfast in the past so why not give it a try. I ordered the book and it came in about 4 days. I read the book in 2 days. It's a very small book, but every part of it is packed with insightful bits to help you figure out why your body wants to be fat and how to undo that programming. It was a real eye opener! So as soon as my back healed from my injury, I put the method in action. In the first 6 weeks I lost almost 4 inches off my waist and my energy level went from lethargic to crazy. I couldn't sit still. I even started running(albeit not very fast or far since I am carrying around a lot of weight) Since starting I've lost 4 clothing sizes(and may be on my way to a fifth) I've lost one whole shoe size and a half. I feel happy and healthy. results do vary as does one's personal comitment to using the method and not saying"Oh well, Jon said eat what I want and I want a 20 scoop sundae" I only wish amazon carried the other materials that are offered on the Gabriel Method website. I feel like I did myself an injustice of just buying the book for $9.49 and downloading the free cd, because there's tons more material included in the hefty pricetag I saw on the author's website. I highly reccomend this book to anyone who has been on diets all their lives while watching their weight creep higher and higher over the years. This IS the book you need. This really will work for you if you actually read AND comprehend AND put it in action. You'll never diet again and you'll feel amazing!
on September 23, 2010
Consise, well rounded with useful suggestions for dealing with weight control thru body, mind, and spirit techniques. These seem to be do-able and likely to work.
I am a semi-reired pediatrician and found his insight into how we are malnourished despite large food intakes and "starving" nutritionally, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually a novel approach to lots of traditional weight control programs. I also agree with him whole-heartedly. Also, the insights and ways to deal with toxins and modern day stresses were good. Even better were his recommendations for healthy foods, water, and supplements to restore the physical body to health and techniques for nourishing our minds and spirits.
I highly recommend this information packed book.
on February 26, 2009
The eighty pounds I've lost are only a small part of The Gabriel Method's impact on me. Jon's insight that many of us are "starving" and compensate with food has led me and several of my friends to look inside ourselves and become better people. At first I thought it was too good to be true, but it's all based on sound logic and biochemistry, and the real proof has been in the results. I have re-discovered my passion, which has led me to stop fighting the logic of my body and I've never been happier. This book is an absolute life changer.
I've done my share in the past 30+ years of losing weight by dieting and gaining it back. The current advice to cut calories and exercise just hasn't worked well for us. At some point you have to realize that what you're doing isn't working. I finally gave up on dieting, and in the past two years I've lost over 30 pounds.
This isn't just a book about "thinking yourself thin." It's a fantastic compilation of advice that covers the mental, spiritual and physical aspects of body identity and nutrition. And it's all very simply presented and easy to execute.
Gabriel offers so many wonderful suggestions that include eating grass-fed meat and living fruits and vegetables; drinking water; consuming omega 3s; exercising like our ancestors; eating earlier in the day rather than later; chewing food; conscious eating; the role of enzymes and bacteria; and spending time in nature and in the sun. He discusses how the body uses fat cells to safely store toxins and how drugs and other items ingested affect our bodies.
Equally important to diet is understanding how our thoughts affect our body image and possible psychological reasons as to why we are fat, such as using fat as a barrier to intimacy or control by others, or consuming foods as replacements for love or security. No weight loss can be sustained without addressing these emotional factors.
Gabriel also discusses the role of physiology and the reptilian brain inherited from our ancestors that controls the level of fat we retain based on inherent survival needs--the classic fight, flight or freeze.
And the icing on the cake is the New Thought use of the mind to change physical reality, popularly known as manifesting. Visualization of the desired body and faith in its eventual manifestation not only affects reality but prompts different choices. If you're sitting in front of the TV getting depressed thinking you'll always be a fat slug, you'll be much more inclined to eat a bag of potato chips in resignation than if you're looking at a picture imagining you're thin and active. Using our mind to imagine our future is a powerful tool for change.
Forget low-calorie diets, shakes, pills and procedures, and get to the root of your weight problem by following the advice in this book. Highly recommended.
on November 18, 2009
Author Jon Gabriel lost 220 pounds and morphed from an uninteresting fat guy into Mr. Yummy, a lean mean muscle machine with 6-pack abs. This book explains his weight loss techniques, which he calls The Gabriel Method. According to Gabriel, permanent weight loss is less about diet and exercise and more about the mind-body connection.
The basic idea is that your mind must be used to undo the default fat program your body is following. Participants have to be willing to invest considerable time and energy in visualization exercises, meditation practices and other mind work. They also need to be prepared to make changes to diet that include eating whey protein and drinking wheat grass juice. This is not the book for the person who wants to take off 10 or 20 pounds in a hurry. The Gabriel Method would most appeal to a seriously overweight person who has tried everything else without lasing success.
That said, any book that gives me a living, breathing role model and a few useful ideas is worthy of my reading time, and The Gabriel Method easily meets this minimum quality requirement. For example, Gabriel advises putting your mind into SMART (Super Mental Awareness Re-education Training) mode to eliminate the non-physical causes of obesity. This is an alpha or transcendent state of mind where fears are released, worn-out dysfunctional ideas are changed, and new ideas can firmly take root.
Gabriel also talks about the importance of living with purpose. "Meaning and purpose are soul food and many of us are starving for this essential non-physical nutrient." He says the ultimate cure for frustration and hunger that cannot be satisfied is to follow your heart and do the thing you're afraid to do. I absolutely love this idea!
Unfortunately Gabriel does not always fully develop his excellent ideas. Rather than going deeply into the direct relationship between lack of purpose in life and lack of care for self, he provides us with a provocative snippet and no clear direction about how to implement the idea. This abbreviated writing style occurs repeatedly throughout the book, and we end up with a mishmash of things to consider that can overwhelm a potential participant and block further action.
Gabriel also talks incessantly about the "FAT program," where the word FAT always appears in full caps for extra emphasis. I totally "get" that he's using FAT as a clever acronym. That said, using and seeing and thinking about the word "FAT" puts attention on what's not wanted, and this is counter-intuitive. I would prefer to hear about the SKINNY program, not the fat one!
And lastly, Gabriel's eating and exercising direction is too vague for my personal taste. I would prefer more concrete, authentic advice that explains exactly how Gabriel eats and exercises on a day-to-day and week-to-week basis. Instead, he gives an undiet variation of the eat when hungry/stop when full message - one of those platitudes that sounds easy but isn't. Gabriel also does not share his personal exercise routine and he downplays the importance of exercise. This is highly suspicious because his 6-pack abs didn't get that way by magic.
Bottom line: 1 thumb up; 1 thumb down. There's good stuff in here, but you have to dig for it.