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Book Reviews

by Susan Blake, M.S., R.D.


The Easy 4 Ingredient Diabetic Cookbook: The Smart Way to Cook Healthy
by Sally N. Hunt, PhD.
Cookbook Resources, Inc., 2004

The Easy 4 Ingredient Diabetic Cookbook by Sally N Hunt, PhD, is a MUST for diabetics who like to eat, but enjoy simple, delicious food with easy cooking methods. This is a fun cookbook! Recipes really do feature 4 ingredients per recipe. You don’t have to shop for seventeen ingredients you will never use again. These ingredients may be waiting for you in the cupboard. You do not need to be a gourmet cook, but you can feel like one!

Ms. Hunt presents a nicely organized table of contents, a definition list of carbohydrates and diabetic terms, and attractive illustrations. She also encourages readers to follow a healthy diabetic diet and lifestyle and discusses food choices, including advice on commercial ready-made products that will speed your time in the kitchen.Chicken salad garnished with lettuce and olives.

The recipes cover breakfast to dinner, starting with appetizers and on to main dishes and side vegetables, then through to desserts. You may soon begin your day with Wake up Wraps or Buttery Cinnamon Toast. Are you ready to invite 4 friends over to feast on your 4 Ingredient cooking? Start your next dinner party with Hot Artichoke Dip and Curried fruit. Chicken salad or Spicy Beef Enchiladas make for tasty entrees, and select a special happy ending such as Chocolate Mint Ice Cream Pie or Creamy Peanut Butter Bites! Is your mouth watering yet? These recipes will give you new ideas about your daily food horizons. There is something for everyone in this 261 page book.

As an RD, I endorse this book because of its simplicity, easy-to-understand terms and nourishing meals that need little preparation time or skill. Our goal should be to cook and eat meals together at the table and reap the bounty of healthy eating. The nutrition information is listed in a simple format. The carbohydrate and exchange values are easy to understand and appear to be quite accurate. These ingredients should easily fit into your budget and dietary needs as well. I asked my friend Cris, a diabetic, to read the book as well. She loved the format, easy recipes and especially the dessert section! She echoed Jackie Gleason’s famous exclamation: “how sweet it is!”….So, let’s follow Cris’s call, let’s eat! Thanks Cris!

Everyone is busy these days. This book is a fast fix for time and energy crunches for inexperienced cooks, students, single parents, bachelors, the energy-deprived executive as well as seniors who find cooking difficult. The print size, page arrangements and divided sections in the edition make this spiral bound book a great gift-giving idea!

There are more than 4 reasons to buy this book. If you like to use new cookbooks and show off your kitchen skills then remember these Fs: Fun, Fantastic Food, Financially Fit and Food Wise. This book gets an A in the dietician’s grade book. This book is 4 you!


Beating Diabetes: The first complete program clinically proven to dramatically improve your glucose tolerance
“From experts at Harvard Medical School”
by David M Nathan, M.D. and Linda M Delahanty, M.S., R.D.
McGraw-Hill, 2006

David Nathan, M.D., and Linda M. Delahanty, M.S., R.D., are the director and chief dietician, respectively, of the Diabetes Center at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. In this book they present diabetes and prediabetes advice gleaned from their review of The Diabetes Prevention Program, (DPP), a National Institutes of Health study which found that long-term strategies for lifestyle changes could reduce the health effects of diabetes or help to prevent it. Their recommendations include more activity, exercise, a low-fat diet and balanced eating plans that are reasonable and will allow for comfortable eating and behavior changes.

Drs. Nathan and Delahanty write clearly, in well-defined chapters, about blood glucose control, hypertension, triglycerides, cholesterol, heart disease and associated longer term complications. They also present thorough reviews of fad diets, popular weight loss programs, nutrients, and causes for weight loss failure. They map out DPP in a sixteen-week format. They conclude the fourteen-chapter book with an explanation of gastric bypass surgery, personal testimonies, and appendices that include shopping lists, calorie levels for diet patterns, nutrition studies, and recipes.

This book is not for the everyday diabetic who needs quick answers. Drs. Nathan and Delahanty have written for those who have had diet/diabetic education and lifestyle coaching. This foundation will allow the more serious learners to understand more in-depth explanations. It would also be ideal in a classroom format for advanced diabetics with previous education as listed above. Allied health professionals and dietetic students might also find it helpful in developing classroom nodules to advance their knowledge of diabetes. Additionally, this book could be used by an RD or CDE to develop out-patient diabetic and weight loss programming.

As an R.D., I endorse this edition as a good, reliable and comprehensive resource for health care professionals and for diabetics who want to know more on their quest for long-term lifestyle changes and improved diabetic control.