As much as there are some very good "healthy cookbooks" on the market today, I must give Dr. John Berardi’s Gourmet Nutrition the blue ribbon, after reviewing numerous hardcopy and ebooks in this category, and here’s why:
- John Berardi (that’s Doctor Berardi, as in PhD in nutrition, by the way), is extremely intelligent and knows what he is talking about. He is a trainer of elite athletes, an exercise physiologist, a nutritionist and he practices what he preaches (with the body to prove it).
- These are diet, fitness and bodybuilding friendly recipes, written for fitness enthusiasts. General audience cookbooks are filled with recipes that are delicious, but not so good for you (or for your abs!)
- This is NOT just a cookbook or recipe book. In between the 100+ recipes, you will find advice on shopping and food preparation as well as dozens of tips and factoids on muscle-building, fat-burning and health-promoting nutrition.
- John writes simply, clearly and truthfully. No scientific jargon. No BS. Very practical info that you can use in daily life.
John is not only a great writer, he’s funny too! John will have you ROTFLYAO at the same time you are learning about nutrition and healthy cooking.
For example, on the subject of whether it’s ok to have caffeine or coffee in your diet, most writers start their articles or book chapters with something like, “Caffeine is a member of the methylxanththine family which inhibits phosphodiesterase, and increases cellular concentrations of cyclic AMP and…” (yawn)
John, on the other hand, says, “A couple hits of espresso before hitting the gym will not only pick up your mood and intensity, it’ll improve your performance and help you burn more fat! But Italian coffee offers other benefits as well. When trying to lure fitness models back to your place, nothing makes them quite as amorous as coffee from Italy.”
John, buddy, where do I stock up on that Italian stuff?
Anyway, let me get down to brass tacks here and tell you exactly what you will find inside this ebook…
In the introductory pages, the first thing you get is Dr. Berardi’s 10 good nutrition rules. The tips are short, to the point and so practical for daily life that if you never went beyond page 13 in this book (where the 10 rules end), and you followed these rules faithfully, you’d be in great shape!
You also get a few other interesting tidbits such as the 6 steps to stop tolerating food intolerances (if your bodybuilding diet has caused you any, uh…. gastrointestinal disturbance…. Then you’d better read this... for the sake of those you live with if not for yourself.)
The rest of the book is broken up into three major sections
Section 1: building your gourmet kitchen
Here’ you’ll learn what kind of appliances, cookware, food scales, and rice cookers are best. Then you find out what foods to keep in your freezer and fridge – poultry, red meat, game meats, fish, dairy, cheese, and eggs. You also get lists of the best fruits and vegetables, plus how and where to shop for them.
Lets see, what else…. what to stock in your pantry, like oats, nuts, legumes, whole grains, which supplements are worth buying, and how to spice up your spice rack.
Next it’s a lesson in sauces and condiments. Heck, he even wrote a whole page on how to chop your vegetables! Did I mention he was thorough? Then he explains fats and oils, what to drink and not to drink, water, water filters, green tea, Moet and Chandon…. Whoaaa, wait a minute, is Moet really on pg 31 of the book????
SECTION II: Gourmet nutrition recipes
Once your gourmet kitchen is stocked and equipped, then you get the good stuff: over 100 delicious gourmet recipes. Once again, John is incredibly thorough. For example, in the breakfasts, section he doesn’t just teach you how to make omelets and frittatas and how to spice up bland oatmeal into delicious steaming hot high protein porridge, you get all kinds of neat tidbits ranging from how to separate egg whites from the yolk to how to flip your omelet without the darn thing falling apart.
You also get some great nutritional factoids such as what kind of phytonutrients, antioxidants and other good stuff can be found in each of the foods you eat.
Here’ s a partial listing to whet your appetite:
Asian scrambled eggs
Tex-Mex chicken & Rice
Citrus chicken stuffed acorn squash
Seared sea scallops in spinach cream sauce
Sesame crusted salmon with sautéed peppers
Striped bass with artichokes and asparagus
Beef and lamb
Seared ground beef with zucchini and tomatoes
Thai ground beef
Asian scrambled eggs
Broccoli beef stir fry
Wait! There’s even four more categories…
6 soups and stews
12 side dishes
16 bars and snacks (healthy smores and peanut butter banana bars… yum!)
9 delicious protein shakes
John’s book closes with a very encouraging word to “set the record straight”:
“You can build a great body AND eat great food.”
In summary, Gourmet Nutrition gets two BIG enthusiastic thumbs up from Amazing Abdominals.com (and from me personally). I’ve read a lot of nutrition books in my time, and trust me - you cannot go wrong with this one.
Click here to order John Berardi's Gourmet Nutrition E-book