Grandma Emily’s Book Review and Giveaway: Practical Paleo by Diane Sanfilippo

by Dr. Christopher on August 6, 2012

Think of your family members, one by one, and list all of the medical conditions that run in your family.

I’d put money on it that your list is long.

As somebody who values your own health and happiness, dealing with your family can be frustrating.  Your uncle just wants to continue crushing donuts and spaghetti and meatballs and you just want him to eat better so that he is present on this Earth for you to spend time with him.

Just because I am a doctor doesn’t mean that my family members listen to me either.  Trust me, they don’t.

Family members ask me all the time:

“My neck hurts … or I’ve gained 5 pounds … or my asthma is getting worse.” ~ Suffering family member

“Do a, b, and c.” ~ Me

“Yeah, I won’t do that.” ~ Stubborn and annoying family member

“Then this conversation is over.” ~ Me pulling the hair out of my skull

To avoid the frustration of the above, I now just hand them Diane Sanfilippo’s new educational recipe book, Practical Paleo: A Customized Approach to Health and a Whole-Foods Lifestyle (affiliate link).

Instead of telling you exactly what’s in the book (which you can do here), I thought I’d share what my family members thought of the book.

A Family Gathering

As I looked around the dinner table, I went down the list:

  • My aunt, who has MS.
  • My grandfather, who is recovering from brain cancer.
  • My grandmother, who suffers from diabetes.
  • Several members with nicely sized love handles.
  • A couple little sisters nicknamed, “The Carb Queens”.

I wanted to tell them about the book, but I’ve learned that I can’t reach out to them myself. They have to make the first move.

So I left the book on the kitchen counter as bait.

Throughout the day, I saw various undercover family members discretely flipping through the book.

By the end of the day, my grandmother and aunt had pre-ordered it.

The book sold itself.  That’s how sweet this thing is.

Let My Family Tell You How Serious This Book Is

“Are there desserts in here?” ~ My nine-year-old sister Lea

Yes, there are desserts in there Lea you little maniac.

“Recipe books are all the same.  This one has simple, whole food ingredients.  I don’t need to buy crazy spices from the mountains of Tibet.  I can simply follow the “Blood Sugar Regulation” section for my Type 2 Diabetes and know that I’m helping my body.” ~ Grandma Emily

Diane has included 30-Day Meal Plans for specific medical conditions:

  • autoimmune conditions
  • blood sugar regulation
  • digestive health
  • thyroid health
  • multiple sclerosis, fibromyalgia, and chronic fatigue
  • neurological health
  • heart health
  • cancer recovery
  • athletic performance
  • fat loss
  • squeaky clean paleo

All of the guess work has been taken out so that someone with any medical condition can find a specific meal plan and follow it.  The educational material about each condition comes from a functional medicine perspective, which means giving the body what it needs to operate at its highest capacity and treating the cause of the problem.

After all, you can’t hammer a nail with a screwdriver.

“I love the way the book is written.  Diane makes disease so easy to understand.  Nobody has ever explained to me exactly how my digestion works from the brain to the mouth and through the intestines.  Telling me that ‘insulin is like my mom always trying to put things away’ makes complete sense.  Why wouldn’t anyone completely understand and embrace the Paleo Diet?”  ~ Aunt Jennifer

Exactly, Aunt Jennifer.  (She’s lost 25 pounds on the Paleo Diet by the way and no longer needs red blood cell transfusions for her anemia since going gluten-free.)  Keep it up AJ!

With beautiful images of foods and body parts as well as diagrams educating the readers on different aspects of food processes, Diane makes the somewhat complex topic of dietary physiology more palatable.

After all, the book is called Practical Paleo.

There are even tear out shopping guides in the back to take with you in case you forget that linguini or fusilli is not on the shopping list.

The book was designed with the intent of creating an action plan for anyone to eat Paleo.  Even if a medical condition is a concern.

Practical Paleo Book Giveaway

In my practice and at The Humble Observer, we talk about Paleo alot.  But that’s because it’s a big deal.

The first priority to someone’s health is not getting treated by a good manual therapist as myself, nor is it to start Crossfitting immediately, but getting the internal system of the body in good functioning order.  And that means de-inflaming the system with Paleo.

If interested, do your body a huge favor and buy Practical Paleo.  You won’t be disappointed.

Learn more about Diane at  Because of Diane, I eat a cup full of sauerkraut on a daily basis and I don’t drink any liquids with meals.  She’s a Paleo Powerhouse that knows how to help you make lifestyle changes.

Not only is she one of my Paleo gurus, but she’s a wonderful person with your best interest in mind.  Supporting her is an easy choice to make.

In honor of the upcoming release of Practical Paleo, I am giving away a copy of the book on August 7th, the date of its release.   To enter the GIVEAWAY do the following and then come back here and leave a comment letting me know you’ve done so:

Only one entry via comment is allowed per Homo sapien.  One winner will be selected at random (using on Tuesday, August 7th at 9pm Eastern time. Please be sure that you include your email address in your comment (not publicly displayed) so that we may contact you to claim your goodness.

For the New Jerseyans: Diane is giving a Balanced Bites workshop on Saturday, September 22, 2012 at Crossfit 908 in Berkeley Heights.  It’s an all day seminar about Paleo for $45.  I’ve already attended once and will be attending again with my family and a bunch of my patients.  I can’t recommend anything that Diane does enough.  Sign up here.

PS.  The Humble Observer wouldn’t be a great resource if we didn’t help you find where to get health sources of food as well.  While we always recommend local (I order from Mini Mac Farm in Long Valley, NJ), US Wellness Meats (affiliate link) is another great option for grass-fed animal products if you don’t have quality local sources.

Dr. Christopher Stepien is a chiropractor, chronic pain specialist, and A.R.T. provider, and clinic director of the Barefoot Rehabilitation Clinic in Denville, NJ.  He has been trained under the Integrative Diagnosis system for “clinical excellence”.  He loves to help people in ANY way he can. Please reach out to him if he can be of a service in any way. It doesnt hurt to ask.

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{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

dustin August 7, 2012 at 11:07 am

Heard about the meal plans via the balanced bites podcast and I’m super excited about digging into those, especially since it’s not one general meal plan, it’s a few different ones. At least that’s what I gathered from the podcast. Stoked to find this website via the twitter account! Was already following both balanced bites accounts, not “liking” you and glad I found the site!

Nappy August 7, 2012 at 11:39 am

Heart Disease

Wish I could get to Dianes seminar but will be away that weekend. Look forward to hopefully attending one in the near future.

Denise Zapf August 7, 2012 at 11:40 am

I have been doing paleo for over a year with great results. I want more recipes and meal plans.

Lisa August 7, 2012 at 11:41 am

Liked, liked, and followed. Pre-ordered the book, but also have family members who could benefit!

Kristine August 7, 2012 at 12:01 pm

I would love to share this with some of my family that have many health problems to get them eating better and healthier. Also, I am hoping to use some of the meal planning for me.

christopher sorel August 7, 2012 at 1:04 pm

Love all the teasing she has done with great new looking idea and recipes. Looking forward to the meal planning and getting the rest of the family on board Like on facebook and Balanced Bites on FB and twitter

christopher sorel August 7, 2012 at 1:05 pm

email is cjsorel at hotmail dot com

Spencer August 7, 2012 at 2:56 pm

Don’t have a Facebook, but I follow you and Diane on Twitter. Would love to win this book for the various meal plans.

Mindy Nagle August 7, 2012 at 5:04 pm

I have been Paleo for a year now but I still fall off at times. Always looking for more support and food ideas! I plan to attend the seminar in Sept and hope it will motivate me further 🙂

Tina August 7, 2012 at 7:42 pm

I’ve been hearing Diane speak on several podcasts and each time I get more excited about her book. I’m hoping that her book will provide the nudge I need to finally give up dairy and finally donate away all the bags, boxes and cans of non-paleo food that I have lurking in my pantry.

Dr. Christopher August 7, 2012 at 9:45 pm

Thanks for commenting all. picked “Lisa” as our winner. I’ll be emailing you very soon Lisa.

To the rest of you, still can’t recommend Diane’s book enough. So simple and easy to understand. Grab it if you can. And if you need any help implementing or making the transition to Paleo, feel free to ask me and I’ll help you to the best of my knowledge!

Love, Chris

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