Don’t wait until New Year’s Day to fight the holiday weight creep (oh, and it’s a nasty creep!). Stop it in its tracks before it gets out of hand with these new books that also work on the mental aspect of weight loss.
“The Virgin Diet” by JJ Virgin, CNS, CHFS (Harlequin, $25.95). Nutritionist Virgin, featured on the TLC show “Freaky Eaters” and “Access Hollywood,” says food intolerances are a hidden cause of weight gain so her plan is to remove the “7 High FI Foods” from your diet. Those foods include corn, soy, nonfat dairy and gluten among others. After a 21-day assessment, you determine whether any or all of these foods are affecting your weight loss and you can start to return some of them to your diet. But what do you eat in the meantime? She has substitutes for all seven foods with meal plans and lots of recipes, including Fish Stew With Coconut Milk and Cilantro, Shrimp Dijon, Roasted Vegetable Stuffed Pita, and Black Bean Soup. Now, that doesn’t sound like suffering, does it?
“Side Effect: Skinny” by Denise Austin (Bird Street Books, $25.95). The point to the latest book by workout pioneer Denise Austin is that in changing your diet and exercise habits to more healthful ones, weight loss will be a happy side effect. She recommends nutrient-dense foods that target heart health, better skin and nails, and brain health. And of course there’s exercise. She has interval training, strength and stretching tips and techniques. There’s also lots of recipes, eating plans and shopping lists to set you on your way.
“The Hunger Fix” by Pam Peeke, MD (Rodale, $26.99). Dr. Peeke works on the matter between your ears to help you recover from overeating and food addiction. It’s those pesky hormones that can trip some of us up and cause us to race to the kitchen even when we’re not physically hungry. But how do we quiet the voices inside our head and gut? She outlines a three-part plan that works to rewire our brain and break the addiction to overeating, replacing that with healthier fixes, such as laughter, exercise and yep, even sex. Former “Biggest Loser” contestant Tara Costa is a big fan of Dr. Peeke’s plan and wrote the foreword to the book.
“Balance Your Life, Balance the Scale” by Jennifer Tuma-Young (HarperOne, $25.99). Life coach Jennifer Tuma-Young lost 100 pounds years ago and today designs health, wellness and inspirational programs for women. This is also a book that aims to get into your head and not your stomach. The book works to fix the food/life connection that many women throw out of balance. It also works to lower the level of the stress hormone cortisol that can wreak havoc on your weight.
“The Carb Sensitivity Program” by Dr. Natasha Turner, ND (Rodale, $26.99). Carbohydrates have been vilified by some diet gurus, and frankly, they aren’t all bad, but they can have an adverse affect on weight loss for some people. This is where Dr. Natasha Turner’s plan comes in. Dr. Turner, a naturopathic physician, banishes the junky carbs for better-for-you ones, based on your sensitivity to certain foods. She sets readers on a six-week metabolic rehab program that rotates various carby foods in and out of your diet to see whether your body reacts positively or negatively to them. After that, you can rejigger your eating plan with the carbs that are “friendly” to your body.