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Book Review: The Little Book of Thin

Thursday, April 24, 2014

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I happened upon this book purely by accident a few weeks ago and was hooked after reading only a short excerpt. It looked exactly like the kind of book I needed to read so I picked it right up and read it straight through in one afternoon! It’s really cute and small enough to fit into a handbag, which I think is very convenient! The illustrations throughout the book are too adorable. I also like that this is not really even a diet plan, so the author doesn’t give you a strict diet you have to follow. It’s more like a lot of healthy tips and tricks on how to stay slim or lose the extra 5-10 pounds you might be having a difficult time losing. And she does NOT advocate calorie counting, which I absolutely LOVE! I also appreciate that the author has a masters degree in nutrition. When I read that she likes eating sprouted grain bread, prefers grass fed beef (I can’t always afford it, but I like eating it when I can), and that she believes fat free milk and soy products (besides fermented soy) are unhealthy, I instantly knew I was going to like her. It’s nice to have an updated health book that is not all about the low fat and processed diet foods. I just don’t see how so many people are still buying into the highly processed, fake fat free food hype! Fat free should be a thing of the past, but unfortunately a lot of people still think fat free foods are good for you. I’m happy to say Lauren Slayton actually discourages highly processed and fat free foods in her book.


There are a lot of great tips throughout the book, and while I don’t agree with all of them, I don’t think the author’s intention is to force me to do everything she says. For instance, she says you should be doing 180 minutes of cardio a week or 100 minutes if you are just starting out. I’m sorry, but even 100 minutes of cardio seems like a little bit much to me! I love going on hikes and walks on a regular basis, don’t get me wrong, but I hate the thought of all that cardio! I also happen to think you can do other types of exercise that take less time and can be more beneficial. Of course I’m no expert, so I could be wrong! My favorite type of exercise (for someone who HATES exercise) is the kettlebell swing, which is an exercise combining both cardio AND weight training! I have only been doing it for a short time, but so far it’s the best kind of exercise I’ve ever done, and I don’t even need to step outside my living room to do it! I am trying to do it 2-3 times a week at about 15-20 minutes per workout (as a beginner). It’s not easy, but it’s a lot more fun than running on a treadmill for an hour! And I feel it makes a bigger difference on my body in a shorter time compared to when I tried doing only cardio workouts. Even if I get in one workout a week, I know it was a really good workout.



Anyway, back to the book! I think one of the main points the author is trying to make is that you need to build lasting habits that you will stick to if you want to stay thin and healthy throughout your life. Crash dieting may work for losing weight in the short term, but you are unlikely to keep it off unless you figure out a habit you can stick with. And she has loads of tips to help you plan it all out. Again, not all of her suggestions fit into my lifestyle, but many of them do. She really stresses the importance of planning your meals ahead of time. You will have much more success if you take a little time each week to plan a menu. I have always done this, but I haven’t always planned out my snacks. I think that is my problem, snacking way too often, even when I’m not really hungry. So if I can plan out what snacks to have in advance, and wait until snack time to have it, I am much more likely to eat the amount that I need and not over indulge.


I really enjoyed this quick read and it’s a refreshing change from your average diet book. It also has some fun and interesting recipes with minimal ingredients. I like her simple salad dressing recipe that is made up of only three ingredients, miso paste being the featured ingredient (new to me, but unique and flavorful). If you are looking to lose a few pounds or worried about staying thin as you age, you might be interesting in checking this out. It’s one of those “diet” books I actually wouldn’t be embarrassed to read in public!

xoxo
Anna

11 comments :

  1. Hey Anna, I'm an American reader living in Sweden for the time-being, and I just wanted to let you know I'm super excited for your new blog, and this review is a great kick-start. I'm purchasing this book as soon as I head home for the summer thanks to this lovely review!

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    1. Hello, Nat! I'm so glad you are enjoying the "new" blog! I have been so out of it over the last year or so and have been thinking how much I miss blogging. So I hope to keep it up and write more articles like this. Let me know what you think of the book when you get it! xo

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  2. This looks like an interesting read! I don't personally feel like I need a diet plan besides "Eat real food" and "play once a day" but it looks like it could be a great and attractive launch point for someone who needs motivation to get started and change their habits.

    By the way, are you still doing ballet beautiful? I think I remember you posting about that a while ago...Do these work in conjunction with each other?

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    1. Yes, exactly. I gained a bit of weight after going off of bcp which is the main reason I feel the need to re-evaluate my eating habits. But I think I'm on the right track now. I've learned I cannot stick with anything that is too restrictive because I know it's not sustainable for me. But changing little things here and there and starting a few good habits always seem to help.

      I haven't been doing the ballet beautiful workouts for quite some time, actually. I did it for about a month and it was so difficult for me to fit in the hour workouts. They were also SO HARD! And I was a little discouraged to find it really didn't do much for me. But I think it would be a great workout to add for variety.

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  3. oooh, what a great looking book! I love the nutrition advice you spotlighted and I think it's right on. Miso is a great ingredient to have around. Mix it with hot water, throw in some tofu cubes or cooked noodles, some scallions, and a few dried pieces of seaweed = miso soup! (I blogged it here: http://thriftathome.blogspot.com/2011/01/miso-soup-homestyle.html

    Also, about the exercise: at my OB appointment, my OB was asking about what exercise I do and after I described it, she said, oh, you like integrated exercise. And I said YES, thank you! Now I have a name for it! I am not fond of gym routines, but I love running errands on my bike or walking the kids to school or getting sweaty with the yard work or scrubbing.

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    1. Your miso soup sounds delicious! Thank you for linking to your recipe, I'll definitely have to make it one of these days, now that I have a tub of miso paste in the fridge! :) I also love that it is fermented. I am all about the probiotic foods! I take supplements, but I love when I can get it from food naturally.

      That is so great! Integrated exercise! I think I will start using that! I really hate the gym, not that I've ever in my life had a gym membership... ;) But I just don't see myself realistically going to the gym several times a week. Give me a day doing yard work or running errands on a bike ANY day over the gym.

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  4. Definitely need to add this book to my reading list. Thanks for the review!

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    1. You're welcome! You'll have to let me know if you liked the book! :)

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  5. I can't be the only one who finds using the word "thin" a turn off. If it's about eating healthy and being healthy, the focus should be on health...not on how you look. For many people, their metabolism won't really allow them to be "thin" and yet they can still be healthy. Appearing thin should never be the end-all be-all.

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    1. I don't really get turned off by the word thin, but I understand how some people do. I think her book is geared more towards health, which is one of the reasons I really liked the book. She also discourages diet foods and nonfat foods. But I liked her strategies on getting more thin or staying thin as you get older, if that is your goal. I happened to find this article on the subject while perusing the author Lauren Slayton's blog. You might take a look if you are interested: http://foodtrainers.blogspot.com/2014/01/i-call-it-thin-you-call-it-strong-she.html

      Oh and btw, just in case anyone is wondering, I'm not making any money off of my review! ;)

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  6. The book sounds good and I can agree to a lot of things you (and she) are talking about. About 6 months ago I did a bit of research and drastically changed my diet - less sugar, strong focus on fruit and veg, whole grain food instead of processed food and so on (details on my blog http://littlehomebyhand.wordpress.com/category/food/ if your're interested).
    I wanted to feel better and live healthier, but the side effect was that I have lost a lot of weight in these few months. It wasn't even my goal and I've even been to a check-up because I was getting worried at losing so much but my physician assures me it's normal to drastically lose weight when you start eating better.

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