The Virgin Diet Cookbook: Drop 7 Foods Lose 7 Pounds Just 7 Days

JJ Virgin. Grand Central Life & Style, $27 (320p) ISBN 978-1-4555-7779-8
Bestselling nutrition expert Virgin (The Virgin Diet) offers 150 recipes in this companion cookbook. While it’s helpful to understand the reasoning behind Virgin’s premise—that so-called “healthy foods” may cause weight gain and that food intolerances can be identified by a process of eliminating certain foods and then reintroducing them—readers can go straight to shopping lists, meal plans, and recipes, diving head first into a program that Virgin claims will lead to fast and effective weight loss without deprivation. Her plan cleverly provides “lateral shifts” to help readers navigate what may for some be a whole new way of eating. For instance, in her “top swaps” list, corn chips give way to kale chips, pasta morphs to spaghetti squash; white potatoes are replaced by sweet potatoes. Virgin also advises going organic when possible and staying away from genetically modified foods. With concluding chapters on the diet for diabetics, vegetarians, and vegans, paleo-low carb followers, and “on a budget,” “on the go,” and family meals, Virgin broadens her message to address the needs of a wide audience. Still, one must be willing to think (and eat) outside the box (i.e. lasagna noodles are replaced by packaged chicken slices; one shopping list calls for wild caught squid). Readers ready to cut to the chase will welcome this straightforward yet inventive cookbook. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 11/18/2013
Release date: 02/18/2014
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