I was worried that this book might be too much inane fluff, but I felt it clearly and somewhat thoroughly covered useful aspects of the French way ofI was worried that this book might be too much inane fluff, but I felt it clearly and somewhat thoroughly covered useful aspects of the French way of living, couched in amusing anecdotes from the author's stay in France, and subsequently in clear and concise lists. After that the author talks for awhile in each chapter about how an American might apply these ideals to her life... I wasn't really a fan of these sections, but for some people they will be perfect. While this book leaves something to be desired, there are very few competing books on this subject out there. Really worth reading, I think, for anyone who knows how to skip sections that aren't to their taste. This is all stuff that is difficult for French people (and other Europeans) to write about, I think (otherwise they'd all be flooding the market and cashing out), because they're too close to it.
Having spent a fair bit of time in France, grown up with Francophile parents and later a Parisian roommate and close friend, I knew most or all of this stuff on some level. Still it was quite helpful to have it spelled out, and to have an opportunity to reflect on how I could adapt these ideas for my own life. Here in the US we threw the baby out with the bathwater as we transitioned from traditional to modern living, and I think these traditional elements that survived in Europe match modern life better than old American styles of cooking, cleaning, and so on....more
I read certain chapters of this book, skimmed others, and ignored a few.
I find the chapters focused on food groups and diets very useful. They are allI read certain chapters of this book, skimmed others, and ignored a few.
I find the chapters focused on food groups and diets very useful. They are all fairly short, which is both a plus and a minus. They're clear, informative, easy and fast to read, but I was left wanting more. I loved the fact that the author is not an adherent or cultist of any particular diet, she treats them intelligently and in a balanced, nuanced, informative way. Also in some chapters the practical points were very useful and short.
As far as the history goes, it was somewhat interesting but a bit too dense, and caught in the weeds of unimportant detail. It just wasn't interesting or illuminating/relevant enough to be worth the space it got. I actually prefer learning about this subject on the author's blog. The fact that these were the first chapters will probably mean that many readers will give up on the book before reaching the good stuff. Having said that, though, the section on Crisco was illuminating.
There was a lot of "wacky bloggy humor" language, but it's restrained so that it never goes over the line... just flits around near the line.
I think that if the author made another attempt at writing on this subject, with an especially talented editor helping to guide more, she could absolutely write a best seller. Her balance and insight goes beyond what is common even in good nutrition writers today.
I read "Why We Get Fat" by Gary Taubes after this book, and they go together well....more
Certainly an odd book. I think the information in here is good, although he spends much more time in the negative perspective of what is wrong about tCertainly an odd book. I think the information in here is good, although he spends much more time in the negative perspective of what is wrong about the way people have sex, and is perfunctory in describing what his actual recommendations are. Short, efficient read. You can't take every single turn of phrase too seriously....more
This is a good book. My complaint would be that it doesn't quite gel, in many different ways--as an epic, in the relationships between many charactersThis is a good book. My complaint would be that it doesn't quite gel, in many different ways--as an epic, in the relationships between many characters, in the use of the some of the more original elements of the world especially the plant life and more complex gender issues, in the beauty of its magic. Nonetheless, it's an enjoyable and interesting read, and the presence of strong women is well done--they're all unique characters, no cookie cutters, fairly nuanced good guys and bad guys, and varied gender hierarchy types in different cultures.
In short, I feel that I read a more modest book than what it was meant to be, but I enjoyed the read well enough nonetheless....more
The author writes that the book came together as she wanted to explain things to her neurofeedback clients. The problem I have is the same I have withThe author writes that the book came together as she wanted to explain things to her neurofeedback clients. The problem I have is the same I have with many books on these subjects... I already have enough rough knowledge of this stuff, I am looking for more clear and specific solutions, and useful information I don't already have. I don't want to be the choir that is preached to, I want to get healthy--not just relatively better, but healthy. And once digestion is already impaired, doing this is more complex than some basic dietary shifts. ...more
If you don't already have ADHD, you will after reading this book. Too much information, not structured in a useful way, and when touching on subjectsIf you don't already have ADHD, you will after reading this book. Too much information, not structured in a useful way, and when touching on subjects on which I know a fair bit, many flaws in the information. Could be a valuable read for someone with very little knowledge of natural health, but simply not accurately actionable guidance....more
First, if you're not a paleo-holic, don't worry. This diet is quite different than paleo as it commonly exists. I find the attitude in AIP circles, inFirst, if you're not a paleo-holic, don't worry. This diet is quite different than paleo as it commonly exists. I find the attitude in AIP circles, including with the author, to be a lot more sensible, no manic enthusiasm or occasional chest thumpers, more acknowledgement (often implicit) that all nutritional guidelines don't apply to absolutely everyone. Why--probably because when you're actually working with diseases and conditions that provide honest feedback, there's less room for all that excess and hubris (which other kinds of dietary ideologues also engage in). When it comes to the "eat more of" lists and paragraphs, I think anyone can benefit, even if they're not sick, even if they choose to adapt this and be less meat-centric.
Get the cookbook instead, and if you can take this book out from the library--buy it only if you are sure you want it. The cookbook has all the practical information you need to follow the diet. She also has a talk floating around on youtube that gets the basic ideas across better: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=02szp...
The author is a good scientist (as far as I can tell) and a good writer, but not really a good science writer. (Her scientific diagrams are excellent, though.) It reads like a textbook, and not a great one. Still, it's important that this book is out there.
I did buy it and read it with interest, but mostly it puts me to sleep....more
As far as I currently know, I don't have an autoimmune disease (unless I have arthritis, waiting for test results, but in any case it isn't severe), but I do know that I have leaky gut, which she says is proven to be often the cause (and if not the cause, then part of the vicious cycle) of autoimmune disease. Also AIP guidelines are similar to what I have discovered for myself over the years, with elimination diets and panel tests and so on. GAPS and SCD both include eggs and dairy, despite a few warnings here and there about them, and I think that's foolhardy; for people with these problems, highly reactive foods should either be removed or be only present as an occasional treat. Anyway, I know for sure I can't normally eat eggs and dairy, tomatoes or soy. And it's such a relief to find sources of recipes where they aren't even present. Of course sometimes one can make substitutions, but these diets already stress your willpower, so the fewer instances of willpower stress the better.
One thing AIP lacks is a way to address gut dysbiosis, microbe overgrowth, including candida. Probiotics are not enough on their own, when someone has a problem the excess microbes must be starved out. This book does have a lot of low-FODMAP recipes and two weeks worth of low-FODMAP meal plans, so that goes pretty far. They don't address ease of digestion the way SCD/GAPS does, so it can be worthwhile to layer diets if one can stand it.
The most important thing about this cookbook--as far as I have tried them so far, the recipes are great!
Also check out Mickey Trescott's AIP cookbook.
I'm very happy to have come across these resources....more
If you already know how to eat healthy, yet you still have trouble kicking sugar, this book is a waste of money. Probably all books on kicking sugar wIf you already know how to eat healthy, yet you still have trouble kicking sugar, this book is a waste of money. Probably all books on kicking sugar will be a waste... it's just not that complicated. You can do it gradually, or you can do it cold turkey. The end.
If you don't know how to eat healthy, this book is a decent place to start, although there are far more clearly written and laid out books. Eating healthy will help you kick sugar, it's true, because your body won't be starved for proper nutrition and seeking a quick fix. See what's top rated on Amazon and check them out at your local library, gradually moving down the list, and take everything with a grain of salt. Remember that nutrition is complex, so to some extent even "food ideologies" that contradict each other can both be right. Learn from everything and experiment for yourself.
The recipes are quite pointless, because it's not hard at all to find sugar-free recipes of savory dishes. Of course I especially find the recipes pointless because I can't eat eggs... there are some mildly sweet desserts, no added sugar, with tons of egg in them....more
I find it incongruous that in a book on communication skills, the tone is often talking-down-to, and imperative. I can understand how that might happeI find it incongruous that in a book on communication skills, the tone is often talking-down-to, and imperative. I can understand how that might happen initially, clearly the authors have worked with people in difficult situations and with various mindsets. It's something that could have been worked on during the editing process.
I also take issue with some points. For instance, the authors say that reflective listening with rephrasing is too prone to problems, and instead one should use questions using the same words as the speaker's statements. ie "I feel very sad," "What is causing the sadness?" They had actually just given an example of a mom whose vocal chords were briefly nonfunctional, and who silently comforted her upset son, who bounced back almost immediately. Sometimes people want to talk further, sometimes they don't need to. Sometimes they want to talk about what they just brought up specifically, other times they actually will feel the urge to talk about something else. Reflective listening with rephrasing is prone to problems, it's true (although I think sometimes they can be fertile, constructive little problems). But a reflective question is still leading in its own way, as well. So there's no perfect rule, and reaching for one leads to oversimplification. Still, in this attempt the authors are still making a good point. And so far each time I disagree with them I still find that what they're saying is insightful and of value, and something I'm glad to learn, even if they take it too far.
Finally, this is one of the very few books I've found on listening skills, and certainly the best so far. A rewrite would do it good, but it's easy to understand and insightful, so as long as one keeps a few grains of salt handy it's a good book for many people to read and learn from....more