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Foodist: Using Real Food and Real Science to Lose Weight Without Dieting

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3.94  ·  Rating Details ·  1,069 Ratings  ·  126 Reviews
In Foodist, Darya Pino Rose, a neuroscientist, food writer, and the creator of SummerTomato.com, delivers a savvy, practical guide to ending the diet cycle and discovering lasting weight-loss through the love of food and the fundamentals of science.

A foodist simply has a different way of looking at food, and makes decisions with a clear understanding of how to optimize hea
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Hardcover, 336 pages
Published May 7th 2013 by HarperOne (first published September 10th 2009)
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Community Reviews

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Pam
Jun 11, 2013 Pam rated it really liked it
I've read all the foodie books, The Omnivores Dilemma, Food Matters, Real Food, to name a few. Now, I will add Foodist to the list. Why bother reading another food book? Don't they all say the same thing? Well, yes and no. Some of the books come from the perspective that you should be mindful of what you eat for the good of the planet and for the good of the animals. Some want you to eat good because it's good for you. Some want you to eat real food, which means whole milk and full fat dairy ...more
Cathy
May 14, 2013 Cathy rated it it was amazing

As a longtime reader of Summer Tomato, I am so glad Foodist is here.

This isn’t a diet book. It's a healthstyle book.

I've been on every diet under the sun and each time I start a plan, I find things about it I don't like. If I can't eat carbs, carbs are the only thing I suddenly want to eat and therefore binge on. If I was supposed to drink two shakes a day and have a sensible dinner, I wolfed down my "sensible" dinner should of burger and fries because I was starving. If I was supposed to eat no
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Shelly
May 17, 2013 Shelly rated it it was amazing
Shelves: food
This book's approach - re-wiring bad habits to make healthy choices more automatic - has definitely hit home with me. I'm a whole-foods devotee, but I occasionally get stuck in unhealthy patterns promoted by old, bad habits. Foodist offers strategies to rewrite those patterns. I feel a turning point coming on!
Christine Theberge Rafal
Jun 20, 2013 Christine Theberge Rafal rated it liked it
Shelves: health
Another book I am glad I borrowed from the library. Even better, the library was able to lend it to me as a kindle-book so it just "evaporated" on the due date without me having to remember to take it back! I say this to qualify that my notes here are impressions and recollections, no quotes exactly from the book. It's pretty amazing to think that our society is in a place where people are writing books to remind you to eat only food. Don't eat things that are not food. There is a flow chart in ...more
Jennifer
Jun 15, 2015 Jennifer rated it it was ok
Recommended to Jennifer by: Jae
Shelves: 2015
Not impressed - the same "eat real food" message that can be found in a hundred other places. The "science" is pretty non-existent, unless you count Dr. Rose mentioning lab birthday parties or saying "insulin resistance" about 100 times.

I'm sure people that stop eating processed foods and start eating vegetables will feel better, but I don't think this book is the magic bullet it pretends to be.

Finally I found the tone of the book a bit too snobby. I get the impression I wouldn't want to be se
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Jan Costas
May 29, 2013 Jan Costas rated it it was amazing
I agree with Michael Pollack's "Eat real food, mostly vegetables, not too much."
Darya Rose tells you exactly how to do that, along with the why-- the science behind it. This has been the most helpful, real book about how to change your eating, be satisfied and happy, get to where your body needs to be, and just live. No dieting, no on-again off-again, lose and regain. Freedom!
Gina
Mar 31, 2016 Gina rated it liked it
I was expecting more about the science of nutrition, like why fiber or protein fills you up for longer and how sugar cravings develop. Something that I could apply to my already-solid knowledge of nutrition and dieting. Instead, it's just another book about healthy lifestyle choices. Very little of the information was new to me.

I also found that I couldn't identify with the author - a size 2 who admits she never had a problem with sticking to a diet and exercise regime (but just wasn't 100% hap
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Benjamin Torres
Jan 28, 2016 Benjamin Torres rated it liked it
This book has an ok message if you really have health problems, but for people who want to know how to get in the best shape possible, this is probably not the right book.
She repeats the same message over and over again, "eat real food and not much", but is a little loose when it comes to indulgences.
To a vegetarian like myself this book is not much help, because even when most part of the book she talks about how great vegetables, fruits, lentils and beans are, she also states that there is n
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Claire
Jun 13, 2014 Claire rated it really liked it
This is my kind of food book. It talks about eating healthier by focusing on real instead of processed foods without focusing on diet deprivation methods. Rose uses her neuroscience background to explain why relying on willpower doesn't work for dieters.

Use your willpower to build better habits instead.

Read the footnotes: they are a mix of funny and informative.

Watch out for the end of chapter 7, "Zen and the Art of Mindful Eating" if you are not currently grossed out by certain food's textures.
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elizabeth
Dec 05, 2015 elizabeth rated it it was amazing
This book is great if you're like me and realizing that your diet could use a little help, but you don't really know where to start. It's pretty simple, relatively concise, and if you've read the blog you'll likely already be pretty familiar with the content. The nice thing about the book is that it's organized into a logical structure, whereas with the blog I find myself clicking around randomly.

Is it revolutionary and groundbreaking? No, but there are some good recipes in here, some good advic
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Donna
Feb 23, 2015 Donna rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction, health
This book was easy to get through. I didn't roll my eyes once. It contained a lot of information that can also be called 'common sense'. It wasn't peddling any type of new fad diet but how to use 'real' food to your true benefit. What I appreciated most was its emphasis on creating a log to write it all down in. NO ONE likes doing that, but I liked the importance they placed on that.

There is a lot of practical and useful information in this. I am not a dieter at all. I have always believed that
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Danielle Langlois
Oct 01, 2013 Danielle Langlois rated it really liked it
I loved this book. Though I highly recommend reading Intuitive Eating along with it to really get a grasp of the mindful eating and looking deeper into the psychology of a dieters way of thinking about food. Foodist ties in all the other material I've read on the subject into one approachable reference. Darya's way of breaking down what it is to be a foodist with a dash of humor and backing it with intellect makes it really relatable. I would gladly read this again. It was such a relief to find ...more
Tom Merritt
Jul 28, 2013 Tom Merritt rated it it was amazing
This book consolidates a lot of things I've tight about eating and then adds a bunch of stuff I didn't know on top of it. Darya's ability to combine science and common sense are extraordinarily rare, especially in the realm of nutrition books. My only regret is that there isn't a clearer plan to get started, but then again, one of her points is that everybody's different, so one plan wouldn't work for everyone anyway. If you want to be healthier, you owe it to yourself to add this book to your ...more
Simon James
May 12, 2013 Simon James rated it it was amazing
Must read book if u r looking to improve your food intake. Mostly about the psychology of food rather than a particular diet. I was needing to move off the low carb diet so this was perfect for me.
Jennifer
May 20, 2013 Jennifer rated it it was amazing
Great book. I adore Darya & her blog.
Sam
Nov 26, 2016 Sam rated it really liked it
I think I love a book about healthy eating that quotes Carol Dweck (the Mindset author) and Homer Simpson in the same chapter.
Margaret
Oct 23, 2016 Margaret rated it really liked it
Turns out I was a foodist all along. Some great, clearly described strategies for planning a strategy for eating. Real food.
Tine
Oct 29, 2016 Tine rated it really liked it
A book about shopping for, preparing, and eating healthy, whole food that is simple and joyful.
Cindy Dyson Eitelman
Apr 17, 2016 Cindy Dyson Eitelman rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2016
I can't go all gaga over this book--there were a couple of things that bugged me. For one, I wished she'd used more citations. I respect Darya Pino Rose and I trust her research. But when she snaps out a fact like, "eating too little causes the body to go into starvation mode," I want to know a couple of things: where's the research? And what's the current definition of "too little"? If this is an established scientific theory, then I would assume it applies to anorexics or persons in a famine. ...more
Erin
Jul 21, 2013 Erin rated it really liked it
Highly recommended. I've read a lot of diet and nutrition books over the years while trying to figure out how to best manage my various food-related health issues, and some have worked better than others. The thing is, they all tend to be extreme versions of whatever it is that they are, and that ends up turning me off considerably. The author of Foodist avoided that kind of nutritional zealotry and zeroed in on things that just make sense to me. I know there are some people out there who see ...more
Beth
Sep 12, 2016 Beth rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: health-food
I feel like this book was slightly under the 4 range for a few reasons, but since it was really the book I needed to read at this point in my eating life, I decided to give it a 4 anyways.

The basic summary of the book is: Eat food you like, choose quality over quantity, and don’t sweat the small stuff. I feel like if VB6 by Mark Bittman wasn’t claiming to be a structured diet, it would be “The Foodist.” I eat 70% healthfully and 30% incredibly unhealthfully, and this book was the push I needed
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Andrea James
Jan 12, 2016 Andrea James rated it really liked it
Shelves: nutrition, cooking
A caveat before I write this review, I was already a "foodist" by Darya's definition before I picked up this book. I bought it because I was curious to find out how she presented the information (and I generally prefer reading books to blogs). I mention this because my interest is academic rather than personal so I can't say how effective the book has been for me personally.

I've given it four stars because compared to a lot of crappy information selling you on "THE" way to lose weight, become he
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Vanessa
Jun 09, 2016 Vanessa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
Foodist is convincing, well-researched common sense advice from a scientist about our relationship with food. Along the lines of Michael Pollan, the author makes the case for eating real food as opposed to edible products, but in the same breath, she tells you that no foods are forbidden. The logic is that if you try real food, it is so much tastier that junk foods will lose their appeal, that it is counterproductive to restrict food choices, and that occasional indulgences make life awesome. At ...more
Katherine
Apr 11, 2016 Katherine rated it really liked it
A useful blend of modern nutrition research, Alice Waters-y cooking, and habit formation for exercise (including weightlifting). The tone feels fairly millennial, with references to hip farmers markets and SF lifestyles, but aside from the coining and use of "healthstyle" (like "lifestyle"), fortunately it tries not to be snobby. I like that it covers as broad a range of topics as it does, versus something like Intuitive Eating: A Revolutionary Program That Works that's just about the food side ...more
Hester
Jun 14, 2014 Hester rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction, food, health
I really enjoy Darya's webpage, "Summer Tomato," so I decided to pick up her book. It is an examination of how we eat, and why we eat the ways we do. She points out the ways in which we have a toxic food culture--how we are pressured to think of mediocre treats (think terrible birthday cake) as indulgences, and ways to get out of that mindset. I recently suffered a head injury which impairs impulse control, and put on a medicine that makes me crave sweets, so I was looking for a way to have a ...more
Courtney
Oct 12, 2014 Courtney rated it it was amazing
This is the best health & wellness book I've ever read. I already read her blog, Summer Tomato, so I was familiar with Darya's philosophy and writing style, but this book is even better than the blog. It's helpful that it's all in one place and put together sequentially and logically, rather than the blog, while excellent, where posts are about many different topics. The book guides you through a process of becoming a Foodist without being preachy or boring. Darya is a scientist, but she ...more
David MacDonald
Jun 05, 2014 David MacDonald rated it really liked it
Shelves: health
I liked Michael Pollan's Omnivore's Dilemma, but I felt that it grew gradually less practical and more preachy toward the end. Rose's Foodist picks up where Pollan leaves off, giving practical strategies for eating and being healthy. Everything from social strategies in restaurants to recipes (be sure to download the PDF if you got the audiobook). She's adorably enthusiastic about health, and is vehemently anti-dieting.

My only complaint is that Rose is a bit out-of-touch when it comes to the ava
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Matt
Jul 26, 2014 Matt rated it really liked it
There is a lot to like about Foodist. The author added plenty of personality with stories, recipes, and humor.

I think I have two problems with this book. 1) Rose really pushes hard for getting real food from farmer's markets and the like. She also points out that she lives in San Francisco, a veritable mecca for real food and farmer's markets (by her own admission). To me, this seems out of touch with what many families deal with on a regular basis. I live in a region of the country that gets co
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diane
Feb 14, 2014 diane rated it really liked it
I was not ready to read a diet book, but I also realized I needed more insight into how my diet impacts my life and what to do about it.

This is not a diet book, in the sense that if I do these 5 things, don't eat these 3 things, and sacrifice a goat on the full moon my weight will come down and I'll be healthy. That's not what this book is about. It's about creating healthy habits that will last for your life. It uses 'diet' in the correct way - as the things you eat all the bloody time. Not 'di
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Lauren
Feb 22, 2015 Lauren rated it liked it
I came across Foodist via Pino Rose's blog Summer Tomato. I read a collection of her most popular posts and decided to try her book-length advice (it was January 1st, it was the thing to do). While I like her ideas and her general tone, I found that this suffered a bit from the blog-to-book problem, in that a lot of the content was a repeat of what I had already read on the blog and some of the book content got repetitive. Thus, three stars.

However! For those who don't read the blog and want a l
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Darya is the author of Foodist and creator of Summer Tomato, one of TIME's 50 Best Websites. She received her Ph.D in neuroscience from UCSF and her bachelor’s degree in Molecular and Cell Biology from UC Berkeley.

Darya helps people get healthy and lose weight without dieting. Because life should be awesome.

She spends most of her time thinking and writing about food, health and science. She eats a
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“Humans are omnivores, which means we are adapted to eat plants, fungi, and animals. The nutrients in the plant foods we consume depend on the genetics of the individual species, the quality of the soil they are grown in, and the weather conditions during that time. For animal foods, nutrient levels are dependent on what the animals eat throughout their lives and are also affected by their stress and hormone levels. Any toxins or environmental pollutants that the animals and plants are subjected to have the power to impact human health as well.” 0 likes
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