Saturday, February 15, 2014

Happy Hormones, Slim Belly: A Book Review

What eating strategy does Jorge Cruise, the #1 New York Times best-selling author of 19 weight-loss books, propose for those weeks when life seems overwhelming and you're at risk for diving into the first pint of ice cream that crosses your path? 

It's the same plan he recommends if you're under 40 and experiencing PMS, or if you're having trouble sleeping, or if you're feeling overly anxious or irritable. It's called the Extra-Happy Meal Plan, designed to boost your serotonin levels, by separating your proteins and fats from your carbohydrate consumption by three hours. (See page 73)

In Happy Hormones, Slim Belly (Hay House), Jorge Cruise outlines various eating strategies (not the same as dieting) designed to balance hormones, fix a broken metabolism and maximize long-term weight loss. 

The dilemma women over 40 face:

"Women over 40 need to both cut Sugar Calories (for weight loss) and add Sugar Calories (carbs) to repair their metabolism and balance out their hormones and neurotransmitters. How do you do both simultaneously?"
According to Jorge Cruise the answer is "Carb Cycling." This is where you eliminate sugar calories for two consecutive days per week, while eating real, non-packaged foods that are rich in protein, healthy fats and vegetables.  Then for five days, you include up to 500 sugar calories per day.  This program is based on research conducted at the Genesis Prevention Center at the University Hospital in South Manchester, England.  

"...researchers noticed that when women in their study restricted what I call Sugar Calories in their diet for just two days a week, they lost nearly twice as much weight and body fat compared to women who ate an overall calorie-restricted diet (a Mediterranean-style diet with 1,500 calories per day) all seven days a week..."

Carb-Cycling is one of three detailed meal plans in Happy Hormones, Slim Belly, which also includes shopping lists, weekly menu plans, recipes with photos and substitutions for gluten-free, dairy-free, vegetarian and vegans and various food lists (freebie foods, sugar calories per serving, etc.)
One of the recipes that I've tried and liked is the Basil Pesto Pizza (0 Sugar calories).  The crust is made with cauliflower, mozzarella, oregano and garlic.  I omitted the pesto as a topping and it was still fantastic!

This book is geared towards women over 40, but insightful for younger women and men too. 

Happy Hormones, Slim Belly receives 4 out of 5 stars for it's easy-reading style, especially when presenting medical information and scientific research, it's detailed menu plans, and easy-to-follow recipes with photos.

I do believe that this book is worth having.  What I don't like is the "guarantee" on the cover which states: "Lose 7 lbs the first week and then 2 lbs weekly --Guaranteed." 

While this way of eating has been proven to reset insulin sensitivity, we all know that every body is unique and not guaranteed to respond exactly the same.  So if weight-loss is your goal, don't be discouraged if you don't lose 7 lbs your first week.  

You can purchase the book at any of the following booksellers:


Hay House

Barnes and Nobles

FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from Hay House Publishing for this review. The opinion in this review is unbiased and reflects my honest judgment of the product. 

Kathleen O'Malley

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