Captain Fantastic and the Chocolate Planet by Tommy Balaam is an imaginative and educational children’s adventure story of a spaceship captain and his dog Winston. When Winston is hungry and they find that there’s no food in their fridge, Captain Fantastic gets an idea. They travel to a Chocolate Planet full of sweets and treats for them to devour. They roam around, eating nearly everything in sight. When they return to their ship they’re so stuffed that they can’t fit through the door and don’t feel well. How will they ever get home?
Tommy Balaam’s has fun story full of vivid imagery, and it’s use of onomatopoeia and rhymes just makes the book much more engaging an interesting. The art in the book reminds me of a comic book style, with bright colors, clear pictures with some depth to them along with floating text boxes. The detailed artwork is visually appealing and will easily capture any child’s attention. This book does a fantastic job of delivering a message on health, eating, and exercise. It is certainly one of the more creative ways that I’ve seen to educate children on these topics.
I am giving Captain Fantastic and the Chocolate Planet, by Tommy Balaam 5 out of 5 stars. Filled with incredible artwork, a sweet story, and fantastic characters, this a perfect gift for young readers.
Pages: 32 | ASIN: B08PJPWJ18
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Tricia Silverman brings a wealth of experience on nutrition and health in a compact and informative book. She teaches readers how to beat unhealthy food cravings and reveals that one can enjoy night outs in restaurants without breaking their diet. She uses some fad diets as examples of how to recognize a diet that is more harmful than useful. This book also comes with useful tips for self-motivation. Motivation is quite possibly the biggest enemy of healthy living. How do you motivate yourself to eat a healthy meal when there is fast food wafting in your airspace?
Tricia Silverman is not fueled by popularity and certified by social media. She is an academically certified nutrition expert. Her advice is evidence-based and factual. Her programs have been top-rated by clients, beneficiaries, and peers in her field. She has a refreshing way of delivering her message. The tone in the book is light while still maintaining an air of professionalism. She engages the reader in her book right from the beginning with her warmth and demand for full participation. Her advice is practical and realistic. While some diet goals can be designed to make you fail, she keeps in mind that you are human. She knows that you need to build up to an expert level. This is why it is a nutrition staircase. Stairs are meant to be taken one at a time.
This book is an easy read that is both motivating and inspiring. It made me feel like healthy living is actually possible. It takes you, step by step, from a novice to a well-oiled healthy machine. The writing style is laid back with both original and borrowed nuggets of wisdom scattered all around. The language used in this book is simple and friendly. Like two friends sharing stories of their wellness journey. Tricia adds a personal touch by sharing her own story of struggles with weight as an obese child.
This book is everything a wellness guide should be. It is simple, engaging and backed by science. It comes from a place of expertise and experience. For all of that and more, this book deserves five stars out of five. It is a must-have for anyone looking to live healthy, prevent disease, and simply be happy. Tricia Silverman has done a wonderful job. This book is your own personal wellness coach.
Pages: 186 | ASIN: B07ZQMYSJ9
Osteoporosis & Osteopenia: Vitamin Therapy for Stronger Bones, by Bryant Lusk, is a comprehensive guide to bone health. The author discusses the link between lifestyle choices, age, gender, and eating habits (largely vitamin intake), and bone health.
Interestingly for a book of this subject matter, Lusk seems to have gone the ‘choose your own adventure’ route for his writing technique. Readers can choose between intensive study modes and brief overviews to ‘get the main idea’, and there are ways to achieve a hybrid approach that sits somewhere between the two extremes. It is a fantastic idea on the writer’s part to include that kind of flexibility for his readers, and it is a tool that will likely help this work reach more people than most other books on the subject.
The driving principal behind this work is, of course, to educate. To that end, the author goes to great length to discuss each topic as fully as necessary. The book is laid our in bite-sized chunks, each one focusing on a particular aspect of the overall topic. For example, there is a chapter on zinc, one on vitamin D3, another on liver and kidney health, and many more. Included in each section, there is information related to standard vs vegetarian diets, guidelines for how much and how often various vitamins should be taken, information on inhibitors that adversely affect the given vitamin or mineral, and then personal advice from the author.
An example of the type of background information provided for each of the mineral and vitamins can be found at the start of each chapter. You’ll see the vitamin or mineral’s impact on the human body in list form. Not only for bone-related issues but for all others as well.
One of the most useful parts of each chapter is the ‘how much and how often’ section. Here, the author goes into the recommended daily dosages of the various supplements, all the time adjusting for different types of people living different types of lives. Then, a convenient table is provided to show what types of foods contain said vitamin or mineral and how much would need to be consumed in order to absorb enough. Then, another table showing differences between common supplements, along with which are best and which to avoid. A short discussion about how to inhibit and enhance absorption is then held before advice from the author and finally moving on the next chapter.
This book is certainly important and is full of wisdom that is not always easy to find in such a digestible package. In fact, in all the years I have researched the effectiveness of supplements, I’ve only come across a handful of texts as well balanced as Osteoporosis & Osteopenia: Vitamin Therapy for Stronger Bones. This book is going to go into my collection as a reference book that I will frequently visit.
Pages: 138 | ASIN: B07QPWPLG7
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What is your experience in health and fitness and how has that helped you write this book?
I came across BX plans about 50 years ago, and used it regularly. After 30 years of hard and varied living I got back into using the exercises.
What is one common misconception people have about exercising?
One of the biggest misconceptions about exercise is that most people think it has to hurt when it doesn’t. Slow and regular is the best way.
What are the BX plans and how are they designed to help people stay fit?
It is based on the world famous Canadian Air Force fitness plan. The purpose is to create a satisfactory fitness level and keep you there with light exercises.
Get fit and stay fit with the XBX 12-Minute Plan for Women Based on the world-famous Royal Canadian Air Force exercise plan, these progressive exercises will take you to peak fitness in your own time and at your own pace. No special equipment needed. No expensive gym fees. No group memberships. Just you, the book and twelve minutes a day. With a minimum of space required the full-colour illustrated plans can be enjoyed by anyone, anytime, anywhere. Get fit and stay fit in the time it takes to drive to the gym!
Posted in Interviews
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Physical Fitness XBX 12-Minute Plan for Women is a short book that provides an exercise program for women who are over 20. Each age group has a suggested length they should spend on each workout. Useful information on reasons why someone should be fit, weight control, and how exercising can change how you feel physically are also provided. In addition to tips, there are also charts that provide which exercises a woman needs to complete and how many for how long. There is also a useful chart to fill out goals and progress.
This book was a quick and interesting read. One of my favorite parts of the book was that it gave pointers on how to exercise by not exerting oneself and taking it slowly. Another part I loved was that they cautioned people, who may not be able to exercise, to consult with their doctor. It is important to note this because not everyone is on the same health or abilities level. Exercise should not hurt, and people should stretch beforehand as well as take it slow. That is why the author suggests a certain amount of days on each workout as well as not trying to get all the exercises done in the amount of time if you struggle with it in the beginning. I think it is great to tell people to slowly build up their workout routine rather than trying to rush and possibly harm themselves. While it seems like there are a lot of exercises to do in a short amount of time, the book does state to do them at your own pace and continue to work toward the goal. Do not get overwhelmed or be intimidated. It is important to not hurt or strain yourself.
I also like that there are charts to show you what exercises to do, how long to do them, and how many to do. The chart was a little confusing at first but easily understood with the explanation. The pictures in the book are very useful. Not many people, myself included, would know what some of the exercises were. Additionally, with each increase in the charts, new steps are added to the exercises. The illustrations show exactly how the exercise should be completed and really help with any confusion. Finally, if you have a physical copy of the book, it gives you spaces to write goals and where you are. So if you have a specific goal to meet weight wise, you can write it in the book.
There were a couple of things I would have liked to see. For instance, the author mentions how research indicates certain aspects of health and exercise, but it would give it more credibility with references. The book mentioned healthy eating, as such, I think it would have been better to include more detail on this topic. I would definitely recommend this to anyone who would be interested in looking to help with their sedentary lifestyle.
Pages: 100 | ISBN: 1910843008
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Life happens. We all know this and generally don’t have to be reminded of this truth. Along with the rigors of work, family, and relationships come changes in metabolism and eating habits. Women seem to bear the brunt of these changes with weight gain following the transition into marriage and motherhood. Make no mistake about it, women are well aware of the changes their bodies undergo, and they are hyper aware of the impact their weight gain has on relationships and their overall health. Whether women work to lose weight or not, they don’t need reminding that their bodies are changing in ways they may not necessarily like.
Carl Turner’s Gain Weight…Lose Your Mate examines the tendency of women to gain weight and focus less on maintaining the size they were upon entering the relationship with their mate or spouse. Turner spends a significant amount of time examining men’s awe regarding their girlfriends’ and wives’ seeming unwillingness to lose weight following childbirth. Though I understand some of the reasoning Turner sets forth, he focuses rather relentlessly on the desire men have to see their wives lose the baby weight.
Another aspect of Turner’s writing lies in the fact that he relates men’s feelings to the physical appearance of their wives and girlfriends. According to the author, there is a certain level of happiness most men feel as a direct result of their wives’ physical appearance, and that level of happiness is negatively impacted by their choices not to pursue exercise and healthier eating habits.
Peppered throughout Turner’s book are scenarios and examples of couples coping with the woman’s weight gain. Turner presents these situations in order to better illustrate his point but succeeds only in making men look more and self-centered. In once such scenario, Turner introduces a brief scene in which one man tells his wife that he will leave his wife alone with their children if she keeps her weight as is and doesn’t find a way to drop the extra weight she gained after having the two children. Sharing this story would have been effective had Turner used it to explain the selfishness behind the man’s comments. However, Turner goes on to explain that men don’t care what their mates eat as long as their weight/appearance is not negatively affected in their opinions.
Turner does include research-based measures and manages to warn readers of the consequences of obesity and the ensuing health conditions which result from overeating and failing to exercise regularly.
Turner’s writing style is straightforward and polished. Overall, I am mortified by the tone taken by the author and feel the writing lacks solid advice to rectify an issue rather than pointing out that there is a problem. His point of view is well crafted and easily understood.
Pages: 140 | ASIN: B079K5D4FY
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Every athlete has the same goal: Victory. Game Changer: The Elite Athletes Guide to Peak Performancebrings together the best of the best for taking any athlete from any sport and catapulting their performance to the top, FAST.
Combining the most cutting-edge scientific wisdom with real life case studies, Game Changer provides a clear blueprint to victory, and will put you at the top of your game faster than anything you’ve ever experienced. Ready to reach your peak performance? Apply the scientifically proven, easy and straightforward practices in this book and get ready to WIN!
Posted in book trailer
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The Vegetarian Diet Guru is a guide that provides strategies to design diets for specific nutritional needs. Why was this an important book for you to write?
Diet plays a central role in determining the structural and functional basis of our living and is basic to our sustenance and productivity. Modern medicine has relegated the role of nutrition in our well being, and I wrote this book mainly to bring its importance to the fore and also provide individuals with the knowledge and means to be in charge of their dietary planning. Nature has provided us with a bounty of options to fulfill our nutritional needs but it is up to us to make the right choices for good health. I wanted to outline recipes that use natural, time-tested ingredients and combinations that utilize the latest scientific principles that enhance the value of food, while providing flavor, nutritional balance and variety.
In normal body homeostasis, all parameters fall within normal ranges and the body is on autopilot mode, with the various systems working in unison to provide robust energy, growth and vitality. However, in disease conditions, the body is off balance and requires additional monitoring, medications and diet therapy to function effectively. While the recipes in this book are based on vegetarian selections, they can substitute or supplement non-vegetarian diets as well, as the nutrients and their actions are very similar.
This book has more than 150 recipes. My favorite recipe was the Green Chilies Curry. What is your favorite recipe from the book?
My favorite dish from this book is Masala Okra Curry. Okra is a valuable vegetable in vegetarian diets due to its multiple benefits. Okra is high in fiber, being a rich source of soluble pectins and gums that lower cholesterol, insoluble fibers that aid digestion, and mucilage containing polysaccharides and glycoproteins that lower blood sugar. Other carbohydrates include low glycemic neutral sugars galactose and rhamnose. Okra seeds have 20-40% essential unsaturated fats, and also, rare in vegetables, high amounts of protein, made up of amino acids lysine and tryptophan which are usually lacking in cereal-based vegetarian diets. Okra is also rich in polyphenols and catechins, which provide exogenous anti-oxidant defense against lipid peroxidation and increase endogenous glutathione peroxidase for stabilizing intracellular redox status. This powerhouse of nutrition in this recipe is combined with tomatoes, onions and spices which add to its value. This curry can be a side dish to accompany rice, rotis or complement other menus.
What is a common misconception you find people have about dieting and how they can overcome it?
The common misconception about diet is “one size fits all”; however, people are very unique with respect to their dietary needs, tastes, cultural preferences and health status. Thus, menus have to be customized taking individual factors into consideration. Often, it is difficult to find the right solution for dietary problems and information sources can be confusing or misleading, sometimes even dangerous. In addition, there are plentiful natural, prepared and commercial foods to tempt our palate. In these cases, it may be best to follow safe or tested alternatives that are proven to be effective.
Another common aspect of diets is their content and how the combination of foods affects their assimilation. That is why knowledge of nutrient values helps to precisely target the recipes and menus towards meeting the requirements as closely as possible. Often, with diets and nutritional health, a holistic approach works best rather than an isolated, symptom-based approach. The dieter should aim at harmonizing various body systems in the most optimal way, gearing towards maintaining equilibrium and normal function. Diet should be the first line of action in preventing disease and always have a supportive role in curing and ameliorating abnormal conditions.
Some diets can give results for a short time, but may not be practical for the long term, but here the diet plays a timely role to correct deficiencies or excesses and normalize after which, one can switch to a maintenance diet. Also, some degree of experimentation or trial and error can be allowed with diets and individuals can tailor their diets according to how their body reacts to foods. In the final analysis, a good diet is one that makes you feel happy, energetic and healthy.
What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?
In this book, I have explained basic principles of Nutrition and Diet Planning in health and some abnormal conditions. In my next book, I would like to provide further details, better understanding and additional resources for healthy diet planning. Dietary practices are very personal and it takes time for people to commit to change. Diet should be habit forming and in tune with our lifestyle and modifying them according to our needs is a lifelong process. I would like to provide convincing arguments for food choices, simplified menu planning and food preparation strategies, dietary guidelines for other specific conditions and equip people with knowledge, freedom and practices to plan and use their diets optimally for the health and well-being of their family. As we delve deeper into our knowledge about what, how and why our body works, we realize that we have to reclassify foods and nutrients further into sub-categories that work in a coordinated manner. Although all this information may not fit in a book, I would like to popularize these ideas and publish at appropriate times to reach a larger audience.
“The Vegetarian Diet Guru” is a nutrients-based menu planning guidebook that explains and provides strategies to design diets that meet nutritional specifications according to individual requirements. There are low-calorie recipes for weight loss; low-glycemic carbohydrates based recipes for blood sugar control in pre-diabetes and diabetes; rice, millets and oats-based recipes that can be used for individuals with wheat gluten hypersensitivity; high fiber vegan and vegetarian recipes for gastro-intestinal health; high protein dishes using lentil bean and dairy proteins to lower BMI (Body Mass Index) and increase muscle mass for vegetarians.
Posted in Book Reviews
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