Sep 28, 2009

Diet Book Review: Fire Up Your Metabolism: 9 Proven Principles for Burning Fat and Losing Weight Forever

Back in April of 2009 I reviewed the Nutrition Twins diet book and am in the process of reading and reviewing their brand new diet book, The Secret to Skinny: How Salt Makes You Fat, and the 4-Week Plan to Drop a Size and Get Healthier with Simple Low-Sodium Swaps.

In case you missed it, here is my review for Blogcritics: Fire Up Your Metabolism: 9 Proven Principles for Burning Fat and Losing Weight Forever
A genuine diet book that will "fire up" more than just your metabolism.
Review in Books — by Christine Lakatos — on Apr 06, 2009

If you want to lose weight, sifting through the thousands of diet books on the market today is quite a task. I've seen diet books come and go, some offering healthy and long-term solutions to weight loss while most are just "fad diets" that leave dieters unhealthy, less energetic, fatter than before they started their "diet", frustrated, and desperate — only to seek out another quick-fix diet again, resulting in chronic dieting with no real results.

So when you find a diet book that is authentic (one that works and is based on sound nutrition), its significance can't be ignored. Fire Up Your Metabolism: 9 Proven Principles for Burning Fat and Losing Weight Forever, is such a diet book.

Lyssie Lakatos and Tammy Lakatos Shames, registered dieticians, nutritionists, personal trainers, and identical twins (we will get to that later) are the authors. Their main focus in this diet book is one of the most important aspects of losing weight — metabolism (BMR). BMR stands for Basal Metabolic Rate. BMR is basically the amount of energy your body needs to maintain normal body function. This includes the function of vital organs like the heart, lungs, brain and nervous system, liver, kidneys, sex organs, muscle, and skin, and accounts for about 60-70% of calories burned in a day. The amount of energy required by these processes must be met before any of those calories can be used for food digestion and physical activity. As the authors put it, "metabolism is the way your body uses calories from the food you eat. The speed at which it does so is called your metabolic rate." Why focus on metabolism for weight loss? Because the higher the metabolic rate the leaner you will get!

The authors provide and prove nine principles that will speed up your metabolism: 1) never skip meals, 2) eat at the right times, 3) choose a diet rich in the best carbs, 4) appropriately time intake of lean proteins, 5) drink appropriate amounts of certain beverages at specific times, 6) eat a diet low in bad fat, 7) get enough sleep every night, 8) find surprising ways to stay active, 9) incorporate muscle strengthening in your exercise routine.

As two authors with such an extensive background coupled with their experience in the health and fitness industry, and two women that are very healthy and fit, we can agree that they are knowledgeable enough and qualified to write a diet book. It's one thing to have "head knowledge" but having "experiential knowledge" allows ones expertise to take on a deeper meaning and increase its value. These young women (known as The Nutrition Twins ) did something I've never seen in any other diet book — "twin trials". They set out to verify their principles through experience — thus the word "proven" is very relevant to the subtitle of their diet book.

There's an old saying from the 1600s, "the proof is in the pudding" (actual line "the proof of the pudding is in the eating"), and metaphorically, means "seeing is believing", "don't believe things without proof", or "the true value or quality of something can only be judged when it's put to use or tried and tested". In this case the proof is in the twins! The Nutrition Twins' theories about weight loss (the nine principles) are rooted in their nutrition expertise and intensified by their desire and tenacity to actually test them — on themselves! They took each principle and did an experiment, lasting anywhere between three weeks and three months, and used the appropriate approach, methods, and instruments to track their starting point and final results. With a toss of a coin, one ended up being the "guinea pig" while the other remained active and on their normal healthy diet (eating and drinking), sleeping, and exercise practices.

The Nutrition Twins' bravery must be admired because how many fitness experts, especially those that enjoy the fruits of their own labor, would test a theory using themselves as "guinea pigs" knowing that the affects would be a slower metabolism (although temporarily), and would alter their body, energy and health in a bad way. It may have been a worthwhile endeavor because their technique enabled them to confirm how some commonly used diet plans, diet habits (food and liquid), activity level, exercise, and sleep impact results when trying to lose weight (enhance or hinder). It also produced a very educational, useful, and motivating diet book. I'm sure at this point The Nutrition Twins probably have a better appreciation of what dieters go through when they choose a poor diet plan, incorporate a few bad dieting habits, ignore exercise, don't consume enough water, and/or are sleep deprived!

As a fitness expert it was fun to analyze their experiments and I was quite entertained by some of The Nutrition Twins' reactions toward "gaining weight". Their "twin trials" confirmed their nine principles and the "loser of the coin toss" ended up with a slower metabolism. In summary these nine trials (separate or combined) resulted in higher body fat, extra body weight, bloating, tighter clothes; showed a significant decrease in health, energy, muscle tone and definition, and lean body mass; demonstrated a loss of strength and endurance; and displayed a negative impact on temperament, moods and overall self-confidence!

Within each "twin trial", The Nutrition Twins include expert information while offering practical solutions to help the reader make better choices in that particular area. The authors also incorporate helpful segments like myth busters, tips, client stories (testimonials), sample daily menus, and more. The only thing I would change about this diet book is their way of listing their recommended daily nutrient amounts (protein, carbohydrates, and fats) from servings to actual grams — but that is just "me" — I like my food in grams!

Although we're not related (but do have a lot in common, including our last name), I give Lyssie and Tammy Lakatos five stars for Fire Up Your Metabolism: 9 Proven Principles for Burning Fat and Losing Weight Forever. It's comprehensive enough to get the results you want yet it is presented into a simple but powerful list that you can put on your frig, in your Blackberry, or on a Post It note!

I'm sure you will "fire up" your metabolism, as well as your fitness, health, energy, knowledge, drive, and confidence and you'll end up looking and feeling your best with this genuine diet book.
Stay tuned for my review of their brand new book––The Secret to Skinny: How Salt Makes You Fat, and the 4-Week Plan to Drop a Size and Get Healthier with Simple Low-Sodium Swaps.

Great last name by the way
Christine Lakatos:
Check out their review of MY DIVA DIET: A Woman's Last Diet Book

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