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on April 21, 2012
This is the best diet book I have ever read, and I lost 44 pounds following it.

This book takes the low carb approach made popular by Dr.Atkins and perfects it. I originally started on Atkins and eventually changed my diet according to what I always thought was common sense - For example - While staying under 30 carbs a day I added 2 servings of fruit, ate lots of fatty fish (only wild caught), eliminated processed meats (e.g.: bacon, cold cuts) and replaced them with GRASS FED, naturally raised meats while restricting my calories. Add in some interval workouts, get plenty of sleep, try not to get too stressed and BAM - the weight comes off! Little did I know I was following a Paleo lifestyle!

Robb's book brought a lot of what I already suspected into focus and taught me A LOT about WHY eating paleo works. He cites both anthropological and biochemical evidence to support the plan in an easy to understand, fun read. I read this book mostly while sitting on the can (where I do all of my quality studying), and I did it in two days! My legs fell asleep three times - it's that good!

I never bother to write reviews, but I thought this book was worth it.

MY ADVICE TO YOU, Dear Reader, if you want to lose weight, reduce inflammation and FEEL better is to follow the following rules after you have read Robb's book:

1. FAT will help you lose weight faster than protein, carbs or alcohol. Even though fat is 9 calories per gram, there have been many studies that prove that a 1500 calorie per day consumption of fat will shed weight faster than 1500 calories of protein or carbs. I know this to be true from personal experience. Fat is GOOD for you. Yes, even SATURATED fat, as long as it is from a natural source - no GMO's or anything processed. Just keep in mind that you still have to watch your overall calorie intake. If you eat 5 rib steaks every night, you won't lose weight. Make at least 50% of your calories from FAT. Go ahead and eat that chicken skin!

2. The only carbs you eat should be from fruits, nuts and vegetables, and they should be organic whenever possible. No grain, no pasta, no rice, no sugar, no way. If you are overweight, keep your fruit to one or two servings daily. Avoid excessive dairy. This will reduce chronic inflammation in your body, which is the root cause of most autoimmune diseases today and a major factor on poor health and weight gain (as explained very clearly in Robb's book). Reducing carbs will also help restore your body's sensitivity to both insulin and leptin, two key hormones tied to energy storage and utilization.

2a.: Note on Leptin: Leptin is the master hormone in your body that controls ENERGY. It is mostly produced in the fat cells, and one of it's functions is to tell your hypothalamus when you are full. It stands to reason that if you have a lot of fat, a lot of leptin is being sent to the brain to tell you to stop eating, right? In a fit person, yes - but in an overweight person over time the brain (and muscles) become leptin resistant. This means that the brain stops listening to the leptin and doesn't know to stop eating. This is analogous to how type 2 diabetics develop insulin resistance from chronically over producing insulin. You need to "RESET" your leptin receptors so that your brain starts listening to the "Stop eating" signal. This is a very new idea in that leptin was only discovered in 1995. You can find more information on this by looking into Dr. Jack Kruse, the neurosurgeon who is pioneering the notion that increasing leptin sensitivity is the key to weight loss.

3. Eat a big breakfast with lots of protein. It is universally accepted that eating breakfast is a cornerstone of a healthy lifestyle, why not make it a big one that keeps you going throughout the day. The protein will satiate you through lunch as well.

4. Meats should be naturally raised organic. Beef should be grass fed, eggs should be free range, and fish should be wild caught.

5. Consume 3 grams of omega 3 fish oil every day. A can of sardines or some wild salmon should do the trick. Your mood will improve, along with your thinking and everything else. Omega 3 fish oil has been PROVEN to transform the small, high density form of LDL cholesterol (which damages your arteries) to the soft fluffy (safe) variety of LDL. If you don't like fish and want to supplement - read the labels. A lot of "MEGA" omega three pills only have 300 mg of actual epa/dha. You would have to swallow ten of those softgels to get the same amount of omega three found in ONE can of cold water sardines! It's better to get it in food form anyway. Note: GRASS FED beef contains omega 3, corn fed beef does not; WILD salmon contains omega 3, farm raised contains far less omega 3 and it is less absorbable. Also note: Omega 3 oil is one of the best things you can put into your body to reduce chronic inflammation.

6. Keep it under 1500-1800 calories a day. No matter what you eat, if you eat too much you will never lose weight. Besides, if you are eating protein and fat, you won't be nearly as hungry and this restriction will happen naturally.

7. Lay off alcohol. Drink wine if you have to, but keep it to two glasses or less. Alcohol will postpone fat loss while it is being processed by your body, plus it can cause a spike in insulin which will give you hunger cravings. Personally for me, alcohol is the trigger that makes me run for the pizza and wings. Stay away if you can! You will find that you will feel very different after a drink once you start eating low carb anyway - the effect won't be as pleasant. Stay the hell away from beer! That's liquid bread!

8. Limit caffeine. Caffeine can screw up your insulin levels too. Remember - if insulin is high, you CAN'T BURN FAT. You must reduce your blood insulin levels. If you need the coffee (like I do), keep it to one or two cups in the morning, no sugar!

9. Dump the diet drinks or anything with artificial sweeteners. Stop putting chemicals in your body! That stuff is toxic! Not to mention that all of those sugar substitutes can spike insulin as well. Do this for a few weeks and then try a diet soda and you'll see how awful that fake stuff really tastes.

10. DRINK LOADS of PURE, FILTERED WATER! I recommend investing in a reverse osmosis filtration system. 12 glasses a day - you are going to need it to flush out all the toxins you will be shedding. Remember - toxins are stored in fat cells.

11. SLEEP 8 straight hours every night. Shut the T.V. off! This is when your body heals. Your hormones will balance out, your leptin sensitivity will return, your stress will be reduced and you will feel better and lose weight faster if you get enough QUALITY, uninterrupted sleep.

12. STOP GRAZING! I always knew this theory of "Eating 6 small meals a day to keep your metabolism from slowing down" was bull. Eat three meals a day and don't snack - this will help you to reset your leptin receptors. Give your liver and digestive system a break, you'll feel better. Intermittent fasting is natural and good for you. It has been PROVEN that animals who consume fewer calories live longer. You can offset any metabolic slow down with moderate exercise.

12. Workout every day for 30 minutes minimum. Warm up with a little cardio, and switch to body-weight or weight bearing exercises. Too much cardio is NOT GOOD FOR YOU! See Kevin Richardson's website and book on this. Remember - the heart and lungs serve the muscles, not the other way around. If you focus more on FULL body, COMPOUND movements you will see better results. Example: 20 minutes on treadmill to warm up and get the blood flowing followed by: pull ups, push ups, rows, overhead presses, deadlifts, squats and some core exerciese (crunches etc..). Use natural movements that employ more than one joint and more than one muscle group. Make sure that you are sweating for at least 20 minutes to help get rid of all those toxins! Sweating is GOOD!

13. Do no eat 4 hours before bed. This is a great idea - you will sleep more soundly if your body isn't working hard to digest dinner. This is another way to help reset your leptin sensitivity.

14. As for the carb bingers out there (I am one of them), remember that refined carbohydrates are addictive. Years ago, I sucked on two packs of Newports a day and was able to quit. That was child's play compared to skipping the bread. There is no denying the highly addictive nature of refined, processed foods and the only way to break an addiction is to remove it completely. Make no mistake, refined carbohydrates are insidious and will kill you just as surely as smoking will - probably faster. You must defeat this addiction. Don't even think of refined starch as food, because it is not. It is poison. Once you get through the first 30 days you're home free. If you fall off the wagon, don't let that be an excuse to quit! Go to the gym, burn off that sugar and get right back on the plan!

15. Lastly - there are a lot of "Don'ts" here. In order to successfully change your lifestyle you must change your mind. When you deny yourself things that you want (like the pizza), your mind can interpret this as "loss." By depriving yourself of the high carb foods that you have been accustomed to, your body may react to this loss in the same way it would have reacted 5000 years ago when food was scarce - with stress. This body equates this stress to fear of starvation, and reacts by retaining as much energy (calories) as possible. There is a real physiologic response to the "stress" of dieting.

You must change your mindset in order to minimize this feeling of loss. Convince yourself that eating this way is "SAFE," and try only to focus on how good you feel when doing so. Also, distract yourself from the feeling of loss by introducing something positive in your life. My recommendation: Take up a hobby at the same time you begin restricting carbs. Find something that you love to do and make it your business to do it. Being happy and content with life will make it much easier to lose weight. Fill your spare time doing something you enjoy and distract your sub conscience from what it is being denied. Be fulfilled with something other than food. Change your mindset, strengthen your body and SUCCEED!

Good Luck!

-Christopher Snow
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on September 27, 2017
I wanted to know what the Paleo diet was all about and this was very thorough. But just like every diet book, it is biased. I've read so many books on eating to try to find the perfect "diet" but every author of every book is sure his is the best way of eating. Nothing against them, of course. It just all gets very confusing after awhile.
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on March 24, 2011
This was a great book. I got it on Kindle because most nutrition books I read and then I never look at them again. However this one I am considering buying a hard copy so I can lend it to friends and family. I want my whole family to read this.

I actually have been diagnosed with Celiac disease and multiple food allergies (dairy included), so I was already gluten and dairy free but continued to have chronic health problems including thyroid disease, multiple allergies, stomachaches and fibromyalgia. I already knew that when I ate more starches, grains and sugar I didn't feel as good, but I loved them so much, so I never had enough motivation to actually cut them out and see how I felt. I have some friends who do Crossfit and mentioned Paleo to me, and after one of them read this book and told me about how gall bladder problems can actually be a problem with grains (My gall bladder was removed at age 21), I decided to read it. This book convinced me! My story is very similar to Rob's, and I actually went mostly vegan for several years, feeling awful the whole time.

I devoured this book in 3 days and immediately decided to try the Paleo lifestyle. My family thought I was crazy. I have been paleo for 4 weeks now and I feel better than I have in a long time. It was difficult at first because I really wanted starches and sugar, but now that I'm past that I have more energy, I still have some body/joint pain but not nearly as much as before, my head isn't so foggy and I can concentrate better, I don't get bloated after meals, I don't wake up feeling "puffy" and I just overall feel better. My husband (who was extremely skeptical about me cutting out grains) even commented that I seem happier and more confident lately. I feel like I'm actually doing something about how I feel instead of just surviving every day. I was not really overweight so my goal was not necessarily to lose weight, but I have lost 10 lbs so far without feeling hungry and I'm 4 lbs away from my high school weight (which is my ideal). I don't get the munchies like I did before, I'm not ravenously hungry when I get home from work, my appetite slowly works up so I have time to find something good to eat before I'm starving, and I LIKE vegetables! When I was eating lots of grains and sugar, vegetables didn't even sound appealing to me. However now that I've broken my sugar addiction they sound good and make me full! I even find myself not wanting dressing on my salads. I actually taste and enjoy my food instead of inhaling it!

I recommend reading this book and at least trying the Paleo lifestyle. I'm still not totally convinced that everyone has a significant problem with grains and beans, but I certainly do and I feel better off them. I think it's definitely worth a read and worth a try. This book was pretty easy to read and I am a science-y kind of person so I actually wanted more detail on the science of it, but it was convincing and interesting. I saw at least one review mention his corny jokes and vegan bashing - yeah there is a lot of that. Personally, I like corny jokes though. I could do without the warnings that he was going to talk about science, but it was still a pleasant read. I recommend it!
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on June 18, 2013
I bought this book after being referred to it by my son's wife. My doctor had told me that I needed to lose some weight and was placed on a low dose of blood pressure meds. The meds were the first I had EVER been put on, and I was motivated to lose weight and get my body back under control. I am a very active and relatively fit 70 years old.

In the past I have lost weight and gotten into better shape through vigorous, supervised exercise and weight training with a sort of careful diet. The weight has been lost over time, but the diet hasn't been a really carefully engineered part of the program. When I read The Paleo Solution the entire digestive process now was brought into clear focus for the first time. Wolf's approach from the viewpoint and knowledge of micro-biology made absolute sense. I immediately told my wife about the book and she began to read it also. Immediately after that, we became a "Paleo-household."

I began Wolf's "Thirty Day Challenge", going completely paleo and rigidly so for a month. At the end of the month I had another appointment with the doctor. I had lost SEVENTEEN pounds in one month, lost two inches from my waistline, had dropped ONE HUNDRED POINTS from my triglycerides and my other cholesterol levels had changed as well. My doctor was astounded.

Yet during this one month of absolute Paleo carb, high protein, intense fresh vegetables and zero dairy...I experienced absolutely NO desires or cravings. A normal Paleo meal filled me completely and left me feeling enormously satisfied. I have now put aside the bread and pasta based on Wolf's book. My wife is now 100% on board as well, and is enjoying learning new ways to "cook like a caveman" (or woman).

I have more energy and more enthusiasm than I have had for "getting myself back into shape" than I have had for years. My first goal has been reached, and now I have redoubled my efforts with increased physical exercise and even more dedication to The Paleo Solution. This is the real deal!
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on November 25, 2012
I am not reviewing the paleo lifestyle/diet here (my husband and I are planning on embarking on that journey starting today, as we both just finished reading The Paleo Solution: The Original Human Diet), but the book instead.

First of all, I could have done without the "okay, buttercup"s and the "sorry, kiddo"'s too folksy and really quite patronizing. I get that Mr. Wolf wanted to appeal to the masses, but I think he missed his mark with these colloquialisms. It reads more like he's speaking to a five-year-old rather than a self-actualized adult who wants to consciously make a change for the better (why else would I be reading his book??).

Secondly, while there was a lot of very useful and interesting information, I wish there had been a section with FAQs, perhaps directed at his detractors, or at least at the common rebuttals to this lifestyles. My major concerns were 1) won't a protein overload harm the kidneys? and 2) how can one get past the "calories in/calories out" mindset? He did - very briefly - touch on the protein issue by basically saying that the amount of protein won't harm you. But why? I don't have time to wade through the many pages of references he lists in the book (maybe he's counting on that?). The not touching on important points left me feeling like maybe this is hack science and too good to be true.

Other than wishing the exercise section was laid out just a tiny bit better (I think I'm going to have to lay out my own schedule because his seems a little all over the place, which is fine), I was interested in the subject matter - interested enough to give the 30-day plan a whirl. I love love LOVE the meal plan and that recipes are included, and while I feel like my inner cooking goddess won't be getting much of a workout over the next month, that's okay. I like easy, too!

The chapter on stress and its impact on the body was very eye-opening and I really think this is one of my major problems. My husband was interested in the potential reduction in allergy symptoms. All in all, we're starting Day 1 today. If nothing else, I think we'll be far healthier at the end of the month.
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on March 18, 2014
If you are one of the people like me who grew up believing in the "science" we were taught and need to understand why what we have always been taught is the "pseudo science" this book is for you. It all makes so much sense now. When I first began hearing about gluten allergies I scoffed. Later I found myself thinking, "too many people are claiming this allergy". Now I understand it is not an allergy, we are poisoning ourselves and our children. Read Robb Wolf's book, understand the reason why this diet works. Understanding will provide the motivation to stick to it for 30 days so you can see the affects yourself.
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on April 4, 2014
I love the author because he's down to Earth and his stuff just makes sense. I started eating a Paleo lifestyle while I was reading because I was so excited to experience the benefits that were promised. I've been doing this for five days now and I have already noticed a significant difference. I used to get headaches just about everyday for unknown reasons. I have not had one headache since starting. My body feels better. I've lost three pounds in the five days I've been doing this with just a little bit of exercise each day. I feel energetic and just happier in general. Robb Wolf encourages you to just try it for thirty days. If you don't like it, you can always return to your normal ways. If you do, then you can continue to experience the benefits that you have gained.

The reason I have this four stars instead of five is because the writing does get a bit dry. It's very science-based, but Robb does his best to keep it interesting. If you know absolutely nothing about the way food works, it may be hard to get through. However, if you push through, you will have a better understanding of your body.
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on October 15, 2013
I read this book after hearing about the Paleo diet from my (then) 23 year old son. He was on the diet for awhile and I saw his body transform rather quickly.

The book was easy to understand and the diet is super easy to follow. I am not a 23 year old male, though, and I have thyroid issues (another reason I wanted to try this diet), so while I felt amazing on this diet, I didn't lose much weight. I don't blame the diet though, I blame being under-medicated. I do know one thing, though. I have regular blood work done because of my thyroid. One of the routine tests is for cholesterol. My cholesterol has been running in the mid-200's for the past few years. I'm not in a risk factor though because my good cholesterol is so freaking high. But, you still don't like to see a cholesterol of 245, right? Well, after less than 4 weeks on a Paleo diet, my blood was drawn and my cholesterol was at 185! I was blown away.

I went off the diet only because I wasn't losing any weight and let's be honest, it takes time to prepare your food 3 or 4 times a day. And, it's not the cheapest way to eat. Meat and veggies are the most expensive items in the store.

But, I do intend to go back on this diet in a few weeks now that I feel my medications are at much better levels.
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on September 19, 2017
Robb Wolf presents an interesting arguement in his book. Are we trying to eat a diet that we wren't designed to eat? His book is thought-provoking, presents an interesting theory about what we should eat!
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on January 7, 2013
This book promotes an interesting theory. While I don't think the eating plan is for everyone, the exercise plan makes total sense.

I've actually begun dropping a little weight with very little effort and have implemented only a small piece of the advice. My brother dropped over 40 pounds very quickly by following the plan completely. His wife went from a size 2 to a zero and is healthier then ever. (We're all in our 60's)

In an effort to make a very dull subject interesting, the writer attempts humor in a flippant manner. I found it irritating after awhile but I'm slogging through. There is science for the nerd in us which I found informative. The exercise program is simple and does not require special equipment. The food plan is meat/fish plus lots of veggies and some fruit. No grains, minimal starches, and healthy fats like olive oil. He is anti-vegetarian. I've met a couple of healthy vegetarians so I think there are some people who do well as vegetarians.

Giving up grains is more difficult then I thought. They're like an addiction and they're so handy. Bread and rice are a staple in my diet, but I'll get there.

As with all diet and exercise recommendations from a book, read it and use your own good sense and your doctors advice on whether or not to follow the program being recommended. I'm familiar with the blood type diets. As an O positive I'm the perfect candidate for this Paleo diet. Blood type O positive is the most primitive.

I recommend this book to anyone who wants to know more about how nutrition works and what our bodies do with the food we eat. I'm assuming the writer is being truthful and knows what he's talking about of course. It made sense to me based on my decades of dealing with inflammation and digestive issues. I'm using the information as one more tool in taking responsibility for my life.
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