136 of 138 people found the following review helpful
on 13 November 2009
I knew Alicia Silverstone was a committed vegetarian from her work with Peta and other groups. What I didn't realise is that she was also very into cooking (and eating) good food. 'The Kind Diet' is full of great recipes, from the more indulgent (but still healthy) nudging towards vegan to completely vegan (and gorgeous) right through to the 'Superhero' diet which is more macrobiotic - but still tasty.
'The Kind Diet' is just that and her book is full of compassion - explaining why veganism is better for us, the animals, the environment and the world's hungry. As a long-term veggie and now vegan, I know all of this stuff but I really hope the book opens up the eyes of a new generation. While I love the 'Skinny Bitch' series, they may be a bit confrontational for some. Silverstone's book isn't fluffy - she tells the truth - but she does it in a less judgmental way. It's also very practical - the recipes encourage cooking for a couple of days so you always have a stash of basics such as brown rice, quinoa, millet, pulses etc in the fridge. That way it's easy to create a quick but highly nutritious meal in minutes.
I'm from the UK but familiar with US veg*n books. Some may find it a bit US-based, but check out a good health food shop for the vegan alternatives she suggests; some different brands but most things are available here.
And give it a go. You are what you eat and the rise of the Western diseases of affluence: heart disease in all its forms from high blood pressure to strokes to attacks; most cancers; diabetes type 2; obesity and many more - is a sign that we are more sick than well, despite the fact fewer of us starve and that we have a massive health support network. Too many pills, not enough decent nutrition.
Finally, it's refreshing to hear another side to the raw food fad - I've been interested in macrobiotics for years and believe that the invention of fire opened up a much wider variety of foods - especially wholegrain carbohydrates - which are invaluable for health, taste and variety. And as Silverstone says, eating raw in California is one thing - eating imported fruits in the middle of a New York winter is another thing. And raw fooders seem to do little else but prepare their food in my experience! Eat some raw, sure, but temper it with good quality cooked food too - it seems to me that the body needs both. So, eating more simply, eating more local foods - it's all good, common sense stuff that doesn't mean hair shirts and 'giving up' - rather, a welcoming in to better health, vitality and a clearer conscience.
Good on her for this lovely book.
74 of 75 people found the following review helpful
on 17 February 2010
I cannot recommend this book highly enough. I bought it because I was looking to eat more healthily in general, but it is so informative and so inspriational that I went from being a part-time vegetarian to a vegan within a week of reading it!
It's full of information, advice and encouragement on how to adopt a plant based diet but it isn't pushy. Alicia Silverstone's tone is friendly and upbeat, and you're invited to make as big or small changes as you wish. I would even recommend it to those who have no interest in changing their diet; the information alone on the impact of livestock agriculture on the planet, on animals and on the human body is fascinating and eye-opening.
And even better, the recipes are just fantastic! I have made a number of them and they are truly delicious.
This book for me has really been a life-changer. I urge you to read it!
59 of 61 people found the following review helpful
on 27 January 2010
This is not just another celebrity lifestyle book - it is really excellent, adventurous and informative, and yes, if you are in the UK you can source ingredients (health food stores online such as goodness direct are excellent for any specialist items if your health food store locally does not stock - unlikely).
The book is great for long term vegans, those wanting to lose weight healthily, new vegans, vegan dabblers, macrobiotic experimentalists and so forth...as a long term vegan, i find it adds a new slant to my eating habits, and refreshes and revitalises my menu ideas, it also reminds me/updates me on my nutritional needs.
Because Alicia Silverstone is more widely known in the US, Amazon.com has many many rave reviews on the book....I love it so much i bought 3 copies, (i can't ever afford to be without this one) and i've bought even more copies to give as gifts.
To the publisher - please do us a KINDLE VERSION - i need this with me when i travel !!!
19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
This was really great! It came up in my recommendations because of the other books I'd bought and my first thought was "huh, Alicia Silverstone's a vegan?" So then I had a quick read about it and decided I wanted to read it. It arrived on Friday and I finished it yesterday. The wonderful thing about this book which I didn't notice from the blurb is that not only is it vegan it is also MACROBIOTIC!!! I was so happy, I even risked taking it to the bath on Friday night, even though it's hardcover. There were some reviews like "who needs a book by yet another celeb" but actually it's really very good. I had only read 40 pages on Friday and already I was thinking of people I would like to send it to (if I could afford it).
The book has a preface by Paul McCartney and a foreword by Dr Neal Barnard MD (Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM)) and is in three parts - the first part is all about food - what's good, what's not, and why, the second part is about changing your diet, stocking your kitchen, getting fit etc, and the third part is recipes. Alicia also tells her own story of how she went from meat eater to vegetarian to vegan to macrobiotic vegan along with her husband. There are also plenty of inspiring stories about other people who have changed their food and saved their lives, plenty of examples of vegan athletes like Carl Lewis, Martina Navratilova, Edwin Moses, Chris Evert, Bill Pearl (Mr Universe bodybuilder) and many more. Also Christina Pirello who I haven't heard of before but she has a cooking show in the US so perhaps someone else has heard of her?
"Christina Pirello, MFN, CCN is one of America's preeminent authorities on natural and whole foods with a radiant personality that only serves to make her message more powerful. At age 26, she was diagnosed with terminal leukemia. By the time her illness was identified, the cancer had already advanced to an acute stage. Her doctors gave her little reason to have hope for the effectiveness of conventional medical therapies and told her she had only months to live. Then a co-worker introduced her to Robert Pirello, a whole foods advocate who helped her adapt her lifestyle and diet based on whole, unprocessed food. With love, dedication and death-defying discipline, Christina overcame the odds, and in the process developed an expertise in cooking with whole foods. After just two months of eating beans, grains and vegetables, her doctors noticed a significant improvement in her condition. In fourteen months, her cancer was gone. "
Anyway, this is not a new subject for me, I have been reading about food and nutrition for years and have been vegetarian for many years, and attempted to go vegan several times, and I thought this book was excellent and very accessible and down to earth, especially for people who have no previous knowledge, and very inspirational for everyone, even those who do.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 19 April 2011
I bought this book as a vegetarian, turning vegan. It is full with great information, really useful facts about nutrition, including meat and dairy products, what goes on in the industry, and the truth about what they can do to your body. It also answers your questions about important nutrients, iron, B12, calcium etc. Dont get me wrong in thinking its just for the basics or beginners, I had already tried going began before so was aware of nutritional facts like these, but this time Ive taken my research further including buying various books on the subject to help me. I came across this book on youtube while looking into vegan interviews etc, and up came Alicia Silverstone. I think shes a great role model for people confused about their diets and the facts behind the food industry. The book is not only imformative of the food industry, nutriton, the effects the industry has on the planet but also gives people the un pressured chance of exploring a plant based diet at different levels. I think this is a really great factor because is allows consumers to make up their own minds about what theyre comfortable with without feeling like they have to go cold turkey over night. Also a great thing if we want to make other members of society warm to a plant based lifestyle.
So if youre interested in a plant based diet this book gives you the chance to gradually ease into this lifestyle at whatever speed your happy with, while gaining all of the benefits as you go along.
For me its really been a great source of information to boost the way I feel about cruelty to animals, destruction to the planet and my health,(including the health of others around me).
Its also filled with lots of great recipes, tips for cooking, travelling, snacking and entertaining as a vegan.
Hope this helps! Samantha
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on 25 December 2010
I saw the author promoting her book on Oprah Winfrey and was interested in her discussion about protecting animals. However this book really opened my eyes to how cruelly animals are treated in being bred for the meat industry especially at birds having their beaks removed and that 30 per cent of cows are not stunned properly before they killed so are literally skinned alive. It made me feel so passionate about not eating meat that I didnt want to eat the turkey I had cooked for christmas dinner for today. I found the facts in this book very interesting especially how breeding animals causes methane gas and uses considerable amount of water that takes away the availlabibilty for human consumption
The book is divided into three sections, flirt, vegan or superhero. I am going to start with the flirt which eases the reader into this way of eating slowly such as using soya milk in drinks or ordering a vegan meal in a restaurant.
I found this book inspiring
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 1 July 2010
Alicia gives the facts, no judgement, pure facts, an eye opener I recommend this book to anyone who feels the need for a radical change that can actually start with the way we eat, how we treat our planet, our fellow animals and ultimately our souls, brilliant read!
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 13 August 2012
This book is AMAZING.
It is written really well and is as if Alicia is chatting to you over a cup of green tea.
It is bursting with real interesting facts about food and what you are really putting into your system.
The recipes are really tasty and fun to cook.
I Love the kind diet and am now living the kind life.
I recommend to anyone who is thinking about living a healthy life and being the best they can be.
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on 6 October 2012
Alicia writes with a lovely easy style- the whole book is very 'friendly' and easy to follow. Lovely quality paper and the pictures are first class. She speaks with compassion and sense, showing why we should think more about what we eat and how it is sourced and produced. This book would be useful to anyone thinking of the environment and how to do their bit, but it gives all the reasons why being a vegan is THE way to live. She herself has taken vegan living to the next step and follows a macrobiotic lifestyle and this is also looked at in this book - and shows that its not as difficult as it seems! There are loads of excellent and yummy recipes to follow and what is nice is that these are in three sections - section one for those who want to dip in and try at times, section 2 the vegan way for those who want to commit fully and section three - the macrobiotic way of eating for those who want to take it a step further. All of these plans can be mixed and matched. Even though this is an American book, I had no trouble sourcing any of the ingredients - not that there are many in the book which cannot be found in Britain.
There is a lovely website which compliments the book - [...]
If you are thinking of exploring the vegan way of life - or macrobiotic, then this book is a definite must for you! Or if you are just deciding to eat and live more responsibly with greater respect for yourself and the world then this book will be a big help to you.
Don't dismiss this book as a 'do-goody' read and not for you. It's a beautiful book getting across a big message in a friendly, relaxed way and has great recipes! A cookbook with added oomph!!
Would make a great Christmas present!
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on 2 July 2010
This is one of the best books for people wanting to change their lifestyle & live a far healthier, cruelty-free life. Extremely well written, easy to follow & loads of delicious recipes. I've been vegan for two months now and have seen the difference for myself. Natural weight loss, feel stronger, no more illness & best of all I have learnt about new food that offer tremendous benefits for my body & mind. I have purchased several copies for friends & family...a definite must read for all. Highly recommended.