Book Review: The Paleo Approach

Holy cats, people.

I like to think I’m a cool customer. I know the dangers of hero worship. I know no one is perfect, but dang it all: Dr. Sarah Ballantyne — AKA The Paleo Mom — has written a book so thorough, so thoughtful, so … awesome, that I have officially added her to the list of people I want to be when I grow up. Effusive praise, I know. However, there is no way to be cool about this: The Paleo Approach knocks my socks off.

The book, all about how a more fine-tuned version of the paleo way of eating can help heal autoimmune disease, is broadly divided into two sections: The Cause and The Cure. In both parts, Dr. Ballantyne’s clear, precise prose — along with her clever illustrations — takes you through an astonishing amount of science without ever making you feel as if it is too complex or over your head. Each chapter is jam-packed with information; you can’t learning something from this book. In incredible detail, Dr. Ballantyne makes the case for getting inflammatory, damaging foods out of our diets and getting nutrient dense, gut-healing foods back in.

Once you’ve decided to embark on the autoimmune protocol (AIP), Dr. Ballantyne includes tips on how to get started, a thorough troubleshooting section, and a further chapter on what she calls “the long haul” to get you thinking about how to eat (and live — she strongly emphasizes lifestyle factors as well as food) in the long-term.  An extensive reference section gives plenty of information for those who want to dig into the research. It’s exciting to see such a thorough, thoughtful, encouraging approach to what can easily feel overly restrictive.

Equally exciting, The Paleo Approach Cookbook, the companion to The Paleo Approach, was just released last week. I have not yet got a copy of it, but am definitely looking forward to getting my hands on that book as well. The Paleo Approach is a well-done resource book that belongs in most every paleo eater’s library: I am certain its companion piece will prove equally excellent.

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