3 out of 5 stars
I would like to thank Murdoch Books for sending me a paper copy of this book in exchange for an open and honest review.
As someone who finds great health benefits and healthy weight loss/management from a 16 – 8 fasting diet, I was very interested in reading ‘Fast Your Way to Wellness’ as, quite honestly, I’d come up with this fasting/ feeding pattern as it suited me and I didn’t really know if what I was doing was the right thing.
Turns out, Ms Holmes thinks it’s one of the fasting patterns that does indeed help! Though I do love how her book encompasses all the common fast/ feeding options there and does emphasis that it’s not a “one size fits all” sort of thing and how people need to find an eating pattern that best suits them.
What I also liked was how I have now been given more options to as to how to fast and what meals would best suit. Some days I just don’t have the opportunity to stick to my fasting ways, but I feel days like that – rather than me just ignoring food or over doing it – I can now treat them as “fast days” and refer to some of Ms Holmes super easy recipes to keep me going and keep me feeling good. As I honestly feel better if I allow my body to remember what it is like to be hungry. Not starve myself, but not just eat out of routine. It was so good to find a book that encourages and endorses this type of eating without turning the whole process into a fad diet or over commercialised trend.
The guidance given by Ms Holmes at the beginning of the book is very insightful and made me feel quite welcome and comfortable to keep reading. This wasn’t a trendy “in fashion” thing to give me a beautiful body. No meal replacements, yo yo dieting – none of that nonsense. It was all about eating better, improving your gut health and holistic health through better eating and how to simply enjoy real food.
The recipes that followed simply encouraged that feeling. I am someone who is totally against fad dieting and restriction dieting – you can only eat lettuce today – sort of thing… which is why ‘Fast You Way to Wellness’ is such a terrific book as there is none of that nonsense in it!
Yes there is calorie counting… but that is the point of fasting. You don’t have to scrimp and calculate points and kilojoules… you just need to eat the right level of calories for your body, your active/ not active life and that’s it. And, to be honest, that is the most fundamental thing about healthy eating and maintaining a healthy body weight for who you are – calorie intake. We want to make sure we eat the right amounts to keep us going and not starve… but also ensure we’re not eating too much so that we just store it as fat. That is the only reason I see the calories mentioned. As we truly are what we eat so let’s just eat what we need, no more no less.
Yes you are being taught the benefits of fasting to see if it’s something you would like to try, but there is no strict “thou must or else” attitude. This is a guide book to better health and better eating – a cook book for the soul and well as the stomach.
And no, fasting is not the same as starving or deprivation diets. Fasting is simply controlling what we eat and when we eat but ensuring we eat well. Yes, you can maintain the body weight best suited to who you are and eat your cake too! 😉
Now, if you’re like me you are fasting because you’re overweight, or simply want to ensure you don’t become overweight. Me, I am prone to eating far more calories than I will expend if I’m not careful and right now am very overweight due to a back injury almost immobilising me for the last year. But! This book isn’t about being super skinny with a six pack and thighs you can crack walnuts with. It is simply about looking after yourself through eating right and in amounts that suit you – the individual – not the mass market. We are all different, our body types and we react to foods are different and so what we weigh is different. What is an ideal body weight, shape and size for me with my heavy bone structure and 187cm height is not going to be ideal for the light framed person who is half my height. And please ignore the BMI – it is wrong and based on text book people. You are not a text book, be yourself and eat well. Which is exactly what I feel ‘Fast Your Way to Wellness’ is all about.
Okay, I feel I am getting a little too soap boxy there so will step down and get back on with the review. 😉
So, I loved the introduction. It really got me into the right sort of mindset to enjoy reading it all. Simply loved the section on which foods are best at helping to support your health and, if needed, weight loss. Then, before getting into those sooo yummy recipes, it gives super simple and easy to follow calorie/ kilojoules charts on all the ingredients used within the recipes of this book. And they are broken down into super easy sections to make looking them up a breeze.
Then – for those into the most common form of fasting – there is even weekly meal plans that map out the foods, calories, etc. Seriously, this book doesn’t just teach you the benefits of fasting and share a few recipes; it gently takes you by the hand and walks you through process every step of the way. Such a positive feel as it comes across that Ms Holmes truly does want to help people find and maintain a better way to eat and isn’t just about selling you a book or idea. Her passion for helping us all find better health through fasting and whole food eating simply shines through the pages.
Now to the all essential formatting and layout: excellent. The book is set out in an easy to read and follow manner. Introductions to what it’s all about, important information that will help and then the recipes themselves.
And the recipes? Perfect for cooks of all skill levels. Well laid out, easy to read and follow (uses both metric and imperial measurements) and each comes with a little extra information to help you connect. Whether it be a brief intro or a super charge tip. They’re all good.
If I loved this book so much, why the average rating? Well, it is totally a fault with the reader as the recipes, on average, are “Serves 2” portion sizes. And so trying to cook for myself, my husband and my hungry hordes – I prefer recipes for “Serves 5” or higher. 😉 ‘Fast Your Way to Wellness’ is obviously not a book for feeding the family, and more for your couples or singles. This is perfectly fine and totally acceptable. I am just not the right audience for that range. See, the flaw is with ME!
Would I recommend this book to others?
Yes I would. Already have been actually as the information provided, the guides to better health through better eating and the recipes are really good. And I’m a big girl; I know how to double a recipe! Others with larger families can too. Or they can feed their kid’s one thing and the adults another. Totally fine!
Would I buy this book for myself?
I might. If I hadn’t been sent a paper copy to review, I would have probably sought it out through my local library first to get a better feel for it before I would purchase it. I am a picky cook book buyer!
But now that I have a copy, will I be keeping it? Yes I will. There are quite a few rather interesting recipes to try out and incorporate into our daily life. Look out for them on my Instagram account as berry cacao smoothies and baked apple pancakes will be appearing there soon. 😉
In summary: If you are looking for an introduction to the various ways of fasting and eating well, this is a great book to start with. Loved it.
Until next time,