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on 17 May 2013
I've tried to follow all diets over the years and find as soon as a food group is restricted then I binge. This book makes complete sense to me.
I love that I'm encouraged to take responsibility for my own eating and to use the table to work out if I'm eating the right amount from each group.
I like the advocating of healthy eating without any gimmicks and no calorie counting.
I'd recommend this to anyone who struggles with calorie diets.
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on 18 August 2013
Simple, concise, just enough detail and just what I needed. After skimming through a number of other books in an attempt to find a 'back to basics' nutrition guide, I thankfully found this one. The others contradicted one another regarding what to and not to eat and all seemed to focus on weight loss. This guide focuses on healthy eating and has a more practical foundation to it reinforces the 'everything in moderation' ethos. A guide I will go back to as and when needed to help me and my family make healthy nutritional choices whilst still enjoying our food :)
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on 8 December 2013
As a nutrition student, from the University of Reading, a major strength of this book is that it's not a diet book; it's a guide on healthy eating. I believe it is important we stick to reading these kinds of books because this is what we need for health and longevity. Although a diet book may help an individual lose weight, this usually is not a long-term fix and your body is usually being deprived of something in one form or another.
It contains advice on many of the simple-sounding things that many of us need help with, such as portion sizes, and how many of these portion sizes we should consume on a daily basis.
It accentuates the importance of a balanced diet. As a society, of all the cereal products that are available to us, the majority of the human diet is wheat and rice based. The guide puts forward the importance of other cereal grains; oats, barley, rye.
In addition to all of this, the guide gives useful advice on what tricks to look out for regarding `low-fat' or `light' alternatives that dominate the supermarket shelves.
The advice extends from inside the home on how to make healthier choices when shopping or eating out as well.
Finally the guide concludes with anthropometric measures such as BMI using your weight and height as predictive factors for health status. Following this, a useful section on controlling weight and appetite the right way is described.
I think this is a good choice for those individuals who want to know what a personal dietician would recommend, with understandable advice.
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on 11 December 2012
Lots of simple, clear and interesting info on how to eat well, and what to avoid, without resorting to a fad diet! Felt a bit like going back to school. Well worth it.
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HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERon 20 September 2013
This is a no-frills, easy to read introduction to the basic facts of eating healthily. It's not a glossy photo-filled recipe book, nor is it a celebrity-led spurious short-term diet. In fact it's not a diet at all: it's an overview of the nutritional basics around which you can choose to build a whole lifestyle.
I'm studying medicine with a particular interest in nutrition, obesity and diabetes, so am comfortable that the majority of information in here is based on good practice. (Every dietician in the world has a slightly different viewpoint on what exactly is best practice - but I'd be happy to follow most of the author's advice).

The chapters are short, broken down further into simple sections, and written in plain English. There is some technical language - can't be helped, when you've got to talk about glycaemic index or monounsaturated fats then you've just gotta do it - but every abbreviation is explained. The guide details a successful method of controlling you eat: breaking down your foods into major groups (protein, dairy, carbs, fats, fruit n veg, etc), balancing intake among the correct groups, with advice on what to avoid and what to choose.
There's a useful couple of chapters at the end about cutting down salt (a major step towards all-round health) and how to apply all the info when you find yourself away from home and confronted with restaurant menus that seem to have no 'good food' whatsoever on them!

Overall, a very useful handbook and more than enough for most people's needs. Easy to dip in to and read in short sections. It's refreshingly free of cuckoo ideas (like eating nothing on one day and binging the next, or only eating grapefruit peels on Tuesdays or whatever), too. However, it does emphasise the Awful Truth: that no book can make you healthy. It's only a tool. It's up to the reader to use the information...

Oh, and I was a bit surprised to find that the author bothered to parade his BSc and MSc qualifications, considering they relate to robotics and technology! His experience in exercise, nutrition, health and fitness for the YMCA seems a lot more relevant.
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on 7 September 2013
People want to know the secret behind weight loss and control? Boom sorted! Easy simple way to understand nutrition recommend to people.
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on 27 November 2013
In my opinion Tim Shaw succeeds in his ventureto create a simple guide that covers the basics of good nutrition. The guide contains honest-to-goodness nutrition information as well as practical suggestions for its application into one's daily life. Shaw presents the information in a straight forward and easy to read format great for those beginning their journey to better health or those using this guide as a quick point of reference.

Shaw begins by providing some general guidelines on what, when and how much one should eat. He then examines each of the major food groups, briefly addressing the bodily functions, misconceptions and pertinent concerns relating to each group. This is followed by a section with tips for shopping, cooking and eating out. The guide concludes with a section dedicated to weight management.

The guide's strength lies in its readability and reliance on solid, widely accepted nutrition information. I found the information contained within refreshingly more reminiscent of my introductory nutrition class than the pseudonutrition tabloids bombard us with. That being said, this guide deals with the practicalities of nutrition; those looking to understand the mechanisms behind the recommendations may have to look elsewhere. On the other hand, the average person will likely find Shaw's practical applications and suggestions more useful than the sometimes dry technical details. On another note, I did appreciate that Mr. Shaw seems to understands that nutrition does not exist in a vacuum and that other needs (e.g. social needs and emotional needs) sometime take priority over perfect adherence.

I will raise one significant point of contention though. As a member of a growing group of aspiring and practicing nutrition professionals that believe healthy habits should be recommended and valued independently of weight loss, I would have very much liked the omission of the concluding weight loss section. Admittedly though, most of Shaw's advice here would be appropriate for anyone trying to adopt healthier habits.

Overall however the guide very much serves its purpose and demystifies the basics of nutrition. After disclosing the mentioned caveats I would recommend it to my loved ones.
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on 22 December 2014
Content is very limited and almost all of it is so common sense this book is fairly useless.

If you have a basic knowledge of the food groups, BMI etc you will gain very little from this book.

However, I appreciate that if you are a total novice about nutrition there could be some useful information here.
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on 5 July 2014
A really well planned easy to understand book which tells you what your body needs on a daily basis, as opposed to you eating what you think you need/crave. Although the advice is sound and well known, I was surprised by what I found and have adjusted my diet accordingly. I don't feel like snacking unhealthily anymore - that's got to be worth reading it for.
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on 13 November 2013
This guide is great in the fact that it does not include any "fad" diets or unsuitable eating advice. It has easy to follow simple explanations of some of the science behind energy content of foods and what makes a balanced diet. Readers will be able to make an estimate of what their energy needs are using simple calculations.
The guide provides practical advice with different chapters on the different nutrients as well as covering the issue of different types of fat and cholesterol.
It also provides relevant advice on shopping cooking and eating that will be helpful for many people and also gives hints and tips for those trying to manage their weight more effectively.
A good guide overall for the general public.
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