Although JJ Virgin’s Cookbook is a companion to her Sugar Impact Diet book, one need not have read the diet book first. Most of the diet plan’s crutial information is condensed in the beginning of the cook book and so the plan is easy to start. What Virgin brings to the table is a solid diet plan, an upbeat but never saccharine writing style, and a sensible, no-nonsense approach to good health.
The book breaks down as follows: Part 1: Understanding Sugar Impact (Not all sugar is created equal, The sugar impact plate, Setting up your sugar impact kitchen); Part 2: Sugar Impact Diet Recipes (shakes and breakfasts, wraps, salads, and sandwiches, snacks, mains, soups and stews, sides, sauces, rubs, and dressings, Desserts); Part 3: the Sugar Impact Diet Meal Plans (The basics, Diabetes and insulin resistance, Gastrointestinal healing, Paleo and low carb, Vegan and vegetarians); Conclusion, Resources, Converting to metrics, References.
So why the Sugar Impact diet? It all comes down to hidden sugars that are causing cravings, packing on weight, and causing unhealthy conditions. Most of the recipes break down to whole or organic foods taking the place of processed or high sugary foods (from fruits like apples to mustard). Most of the meal plans aim to bring down added sugar and slow down the metabolism/digestion.
The recipes are easy to follow and surprisingly easy to make. There are very few exotic recipes; mostly we have staples that are recreating using much healthier ingredients. From turkey bean chili to beef bourguignon, braised leeks to easy lemon vinaigrette, strawberry ice cream to various morning protein shakes.
In addition to the sugar impact diet plan, optional paleo, vegan, diabetes, and gastrointestinal healing plans are also included. The resources in the back has recommendations on products Virgin uses and the introduction sections has shopping suggestions and lists to make setting up the plan easy.
The book has a good balance of useful information to ease of use/reading. It’s a 20 minute read at most but has all the needed information (including cheerleading and motivation) to get a healthier diet and lifestyle going – starting with the first two weeks.
In all, highly recommended. Reviewed from an advance reader copy provided by the publisher.