May 212013

I was asked to review the new book, Foodist: Using Real Food and Real Science to Lose Weight Without Dieting by Darya Pino Rose, Ph.D. I said yes immediately because it sounded like the type of book I would want to read. I’m less interested in reading books about diet fads and more into the science behind healthy eating.


The book was written by the blogger behind SummerTomato. I hadn’t read her blog before I received the book and went into it thinking I was reading a book written by a doctor who specializes in nutrition. I was impressed with how easy to read it was and then realized, OH! It’s written by a blogger!


“How horrible would it be if, in order to look and feel amazing, you had to deprive yourself of foods you love for the rest of your life, skipping birthday cake and Michelin-rated restaurants, just so can feel good about yourself when you look in the mirror? Seriously, screw that. [pg 4]”

That is exactly why I live my life in moderation! I WANT my birthday cake! :)

“Chronic dieters believe that success comes from sacrifice. [pg 5]”

I learned pretty early on that I would not be successful if I was sacrificing everything I loved. I didn’t want to eat a diet of iceburg lettuce with no dressing and plain chicken breast with no flavor! If we change our mindset from dieting to learning to live healthy, I think we’ll all be more successful. I appreciated the author’s real-life suggestions.

“Foodists do not diet. Modern weight-loss diets are temporary eating plans that emphasize  single nutrients and restriction over real food and lifelong habits. Foodists, in contrast, focus on real, high-quality foods in order to optimize our quality of life. [pg 10]”

She called herself a “Foodist” and I liked the term. Basically it meant that she ate real food and focused on healthy choices, without severe restriction.

There were parts of the book that felt like I was reading a blog post. The subjects were things like: 9 Surefire Ways to Sabotage Your Weight Loss [pg 22], 10 Simple Ways to Eat Less Without Noticing [pg41], 10 Simple Goals to Get you Started Eating Healthy [pg108]. But they did have useful advice.


She talks about how to build successful habits and she suggests choosing simple, specific goals. “For example, ‘Eat more vegetables’ is a less useful goal than ‘Eat green vegetables every day with lunch and dinner.’ These clear goals are effective because there is no wiggle room. [pg 49]” YES! Make specific goals! It’s crucial to success!

Mid-way through the book she had a chart that listed the sugar content for a lot of popular items for comparison. I was completely blown away. I was so shocked by this and I think you will be too:

Krispy Kreme original glazed donut – 10 grams of sugar

Yoplait Yogurt – 27 grams of sugar

Odwalla Superfood, 15 oz – 50 grams of sugar

Seriously?!?! A Krispy Kreme donut is a healthier choice than Yoplait? That is kind of sad if you think about it. It just goes to show you how much junk is in processed food.

“Have a weakness for after dinner snacks? Maybe you’re not eating a satisfying enough meal, or maybe a difficult family situation or school work procrastination is triggering you to eat more than you need. [pg 95]”

The above quote from the book really hit home for me. I wondered about my own routines and habits. I often get the munchies after dinner is over. Why? Do I need to take a look at what I’m eating? Do I need more carbs or protein in my dinner to sustain me? It’s something I need to look into.

“Once you’ve grown accustomed to vegetables and healthy food as the basis of your healthstyle, it becomes very uncomfortable to go for many days without them. I’ve noticed that if I eat in restaurants for too many meals in a row…I’ll start to crave vegetables and salads…[pg202]”

YES! This is totally me. I am so used to having veggies with every single dinner that if I don’t, the dinner feels incomplete. I am totally that person that will make a salad or heat up some green beans to go along with my slice of pizza. That chapter of her book talked about creating healthy habits and I am living proof that you CAN change your habits for the better and they will become your norm.

While I enjoyed the book, I wouldn’t say it’s really for me. I already lost my weight and I’ve kept it off for 5 years. I think this book is more geared toward the person just starting out or contemplating losing weight. In that case, this book is an excellent starting point and I recommend it to anyone interested in losing weight.

I get to give away one copy of the book to a US/Canadian citizen. To enter, follow the instructions below!


1. Leave a comment here about anything related to this topic.

2. Tweet “I want to lose weight in a healthy way with @lisaeirene” and leave a comment here telling me you did.

3. Join my Facebook group and leave a comment here telling me you did.

You can enter three times. I will pick a winner on Friday, May 24th. Good luck!

Nov 032011

There’s a guy I see at the gym sometimes with a big gallon jug full of apple juice. He drinks it while he works out. I am so fascinated by this. I really want to know WHY he does this but I don’t want to engage in conversation with him about it, you know? I am so curious about this. How many calories is he consuming in one workout with that apple juice? I need to go to the grocery store and see how many calories are in a gallon jug of juice.

Foods Masquerading As “Healthy”

These are goods that the commercials, ads and packaging claim to be “healthy” for us. I’ve definitely fallen into that trap. I didn’t really know HOW to eat or what to eat to be healthy in the beginning. I didn’t have help either, I just muddled my way through it and figured things out on my own.

I realized I was eating a lot of junk food. Especially the “diet” junk food. Processed food was making me feel sick. I realized the hard way that I needed to stop eating “diet” food I thought  was healthy and eat real food instead.

Granola/Granola Bars – Granola is something I thought was healthy when I first started out. A good snack, I thought, was a Yoplait yogurt with granola mixed in. I bought granola in bulk from a natural health food store (sort of like Whole Foods) in Portland. Of course I never used just one serving, either. When I started counting calories I was shocked at how high granola was in calories. I realized I was eating a super sugar yogurt with granola that was over 200 calories–my “healthy” snack was probably 400 calories. Yikes!

Breakfast Bars – Oh my gosh! These are the WORST. They are high in sugar, high in calories, high in carbs with absolutely NO nutritional value. It’s just manufactured junk food masquerading as “breakfast.” Eggs! Eggs! Eggs! They are the perfect food.

Vitamin Water/Gatorade – This is another one I see at the gym a lot. Personally, I prefer water. It taste better than a bunch of sugar water. I see people at the gym doing this and I wonder why they’d waste the calories they burned at the gym by sucking down liquid calories. Gatorade was developed for athletes and did amazing things for their performance and recovery. It does improve performance.  For high level athletes.  It’s for endurance sports–prolonged, competitive activities. For example, Gatorade is great for someone training for a marathon. Someone walking on a treadmill? I’m not so sure it’s needed.

Trail Mix/Dried Fruits – Dried fruit is higher in sugar than fresh fruit (they add sugar to them!). Higher in calories than fresh fruit. Trail mix is a big culprit in packing on the pounds. Did you know a typical serving size of trail mix is about a Tablespoon? If you’re like me, I don’t eat just a tablespoon of trailmix–I eat a handful. Just wagering a guess that could be 400 calories!

Yogurt – I’m talking about the sugary yogurts–the ones that taste like candy? The ones the that are high in calories and sugar and not high in anything good. A few years ago I discovered Greek yogurt and I have never looked back. I won’t eat anything else. And my palate has changed even more, I prefer the plain Greek yogurt instead. It’s much healthier, higher in protein, lower in sugar and I can add fresh fruit to my yogurt instead.

Frozen Yogurt – Sure frozen yogurt may be a healthier choice than ice cream. But….if you’re adding five extra servings of toppings onto the frozen yogurt you’re defeating the purpose. Butterfingers? Snickers? Cookie dough? Coconut? Chocolate sauce? Shoulda just had the ice cream!

Cereal – When I wrote A is for Abstinence several people mentioned that cereal was their trigger food. I can understand this–especially since the cereal I like is the super sugary ones (Frosted Flakes, Frosted Mini Wheats to name a few). The problem with cereal is that it doesn’t have the filling nutrients in them to keep us full for very long. Whenever I eat cereal I’m hungrier than before.

Bagels – I love bagels. I used to eat them all the time. I loved the big, thick bagels with cheese baked into them, slathered with full-fat cream cheese. A-maz-ing. But, those lovely treats are about 600 calories. My poor waistline. Now? I eat the bagel thins when I’m craving a bagel. 110 calories toasted with cream cheese tastes just as great as those other ones I used to eat!

QUESTION: Do you agree or disagree? What did I leave off this list?