Power Eating is one of the most practical, common-sense guides to nutrition for the active person that you'll find on the shelf today. Written by an educated nutritionist and dietician, this book is devoid of much of the bravado and extreme advice that plagues books written by bodybuilders and miscellaneous charlatans. This isn't a guide on how to "get jacked" or look like a "freak." It's a book for the "train to live" crowd rather than the "live to train" group.
Dr. Kleiner advocates a diet based on whole foods and shoves supplements back into the niche where they belong. People often forget that bodybuilding magazines are almost wholly supported by sponsorship from supplement companies, and they have a vested interest in painting those products as vital for getting in shape. For the most part, supplements are highly dispensable, and the author is very forthright in her approach to the subject. Basically, she identifies the gold-standard supplements that are supported by clinical research (caffeine, whey protein, creatine) and categorizes the rest based on the information in the literature. It may be disturbing for some to see that the vast majority of supplements are either unproven or potentially harmful.
The one caveat I will issue about this book is that it is general in its approach. It's not specifically a bodybuilding nutrition book, and the author doesn't delve into the more lurid details of bulking cycles or other such topics that primarily interest the chemical sports society. She also avoids tackling the specifics of nutritional biochemistry, a decision I believe adds greatly to the clarity of the book. The author instead chooses to keep the book on a practical basis. This is a positive thing in a world in which so many people are suffering from analysis paralysis in their nutrition programs. If you are specifically interested in bodybuilding nutrition, you should probably look elsewhere, because that isn't the focus of the book.
Power Eating addresses nutrition for gaining muscle, but it also focuses on nutrition for performance, a welcome change from the vanity-based programs that have become so common. Low-carb junkies will probably be appalled at some of her recommendations, but that's more a sign of how far off track that fad has gone. Michael Phelps was skinny while eating 10,000 calories of carb-laden fare a day because he trained like an animal. The fact is he had to have those calories to fuel his training. Certainly anyone who isn't eating carbs isn't training very hard.
One of the most important and helpful aspects to Dr. Kleiner's diets is that she encourages dieters interested in fat loss to keep calorie intake high rather than go to the big deficits that many people adopt. Her approach is the high energy flux, slow weight-loss method of body recomposition. She encourages people to maintain a small deficit while eating nutritious foods in order to avoid the starvation response and preserve lean body mass. While the extremely obese can get away with cutting calories heavily at first, almost everyone else will do better with this approach. It isn't a sexy idea, though, because it doesn't promise the massive, overnight, miracle weight loss that so many people are seeking. She does this because that type of weight loss is often only transitory. Slow, steady body recomposition is much more effective at creating long-term body transformation.
The book has detailed programs in the back for different goals (i.e. gain muscle, lose fat) along with sample menus and recipes. Overall, there's enough information here to work with but not so much that it gets in the way of a clear understanding of how to accomplish one's goals.