Tuesday, December 22, 2020

Intermittent Fasting Diet Guide and Cookbook


Intermittent Fasting Diet Guide and Cookbook is a simplified method for weight loss and management by Dr. Becky Gillaspy (recipes developed by Lovoni Walker). Due out 22nd Dec 2020 from Penguin Random House on their DK imprint, it's 224 pages (print version) and will be available in paperback and ebook formats. 

The premise (eating for weight loss by fasting intermittently or utilizing strategies for controlling food intake) sounds very new-age and scientifically dodgy, but the author has exhaustively "shown her work" by citing real and pertinent scientific peer-reviewed research to back up her claims. As we learn more about the incredibly complex endocrine (hormone) effects on physiology and metabolism, we start to understand how to utilize our body's natural capacity for healing and function. 

Although based on scientific research, the author explains the concepts in accessible language. New words are defined in context and in ways that are easy to understand. The research behind the concepts are cited - the chapter notes and bibliography are extensive - for readers who wish to understand more of the background, but it's not necessary to have a doctorate in biochemistry to understand what Dr. Gillaspy is trying to say.

The first part of the book covers the concept of the diet and of intermittent eating/fasting periods. There are different methods and she does a good job of describing them and their uses. The second part of the book includes the meal plans and recipes. The meal plans are adjusted for the reader's needs based on whichever plan they're following: 12:12, 16:8, 20:4, one meal a day, alternate day fasting, and modified ADF. The recipes and meal plans are generally low-carb, but there are extensive instructions included for modifying the recipes to allow for different macronutrients, fat content, or further reducing carbs. For readers who prefer not to have to get into the nuts-and-bolts of adjusting and customizing, the recipes can easily be used as provided. 

The author has included pantry lists with lots of good food suggestions, as well as weekly meal plans. Individual recipes are listed with special labels such as gluten free, dairy free, egg free, and vegetarian noted. The recipes for each of the meal plans are provided in the cookbook. 

Each recipe has an introduction along with special labels, serving sizes, prep and cook times. Recipe ingredients are listed bullet style in a sidebar. Ingredient measurements are provided in American standard with metric in parentheses (yay!). Ingredients are "normal" and will be readily available at an average well stocked grocery store. Some items might require a health food or specialist market (sweeteners like stevia or granulated monkfruit sweetener for example). Basic nutritional information is included for each recipe.

The photography is not abundant. The photos which are included are attractively styled, and appetizing; serving suggestions are appropriate.

This feels like a well grounded and sensible plan for readers who are struggling with healthy eating and weight loss as well as making good and logical food choices. Meticulously annotated and accessible. Five stars.

Disclosure: I received an ARC at no cost from the author/publisher for review purposes.

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