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Recipes and Tips From 3 New ‘Non-Diet’ Books


If you are — like me — still working on getting yourself svelte for summer, here are three books offering new perspectives on cleansing, fitness, healthy living and weight loss that each offer practical tips and recipes that are game-changers.

These books were each written by women who have found success in creating their own unique paths and philosophies to maintaining a healthy weight. Their tips and recipes can help make wellness and weight loss easier. The books are: Rainbeau Mars’ “21-Day Superstar Cleanse,” Lauryn Evarts’ “Skinny Confidential,” and Rachel Pires’ “Diet Enlightenment: The Real Secret to Weight Loss.”

1. “The 21-Day Superstar Cleanse” by Rainbeau Mars
I first met Rainbeau Harmony Mars at her book’s early May launch party hosted by Russell Simmons, Rosanna Arquette, and Shannon Elizabeth at Rainbeau’s home in Los Angeles. It was an impressive party, with live music and group yoga, and the event was catered with delicious raw, organic food. Rainbeau is incredibly fit, strong and flexible and she showed some impressive yoga poses.  As her name implies, Rainbeau truly radiates light and positive energy.  ”This gal is doing something right,” I thought to myself. “I need to find out what it is!”

So many successful actors, directors, musicians give enthusiastic quotes about Rainbeau’s philosophy in the first pages of her book. James Cameron, David Duchovny, Ione Skye, Josie Maran, Jason Mraz and Joan Rivers are just a few of the people who are fans of Rainbeau’s approach.

Rainbeau does King Pigeon pose

Rainbeau does a One-Legged King Pigeon pose at her book’s launch party in May.

Rainbeau does not advocate counting calories. Her “21-Day Superstar Cleanse” is about eating whole, nourishing, raw vegan food.  As Rainbeau explains it, her cleanse is not so much a diet as a lifestyle shift that can help with weight loss and weight stabilization, increased energy, deeper sleep, increased memory and attention span and more. In addition to a daily eating plan with tons of delicious vegan recipes, each day has a toolkit with a meal plan, yoga pose of the day and a mantra of the day. The book has a clear plan to follow, and I am loving the recipes I have tried so far, particularly the ACV Tonic (morning liver cleanser) and the Chia Breakfast bowl. I look forward to later in the summer when I will commit to doing the 21-Day Cleanse in its entirety!

Rainbeau’s Game-Changing Recipes:

1. Easy High-Protein and High Fiber Chia Breakfast Bowl

2. ACV (Apple Cider Vinegar) Morning Liver Kick Tonic

Rainbeau’s Game-Changing Tips:

1. “Put yourself on the top of your list daily. Contrary to being selfish, this will only enable you to give more to everyone else around you.”

2. “What you feed yourself, both physically (food) and emotionally (thoughts), represents how you feel about yourself. By changing just one of these, you can shift the other. As you change your diet to delicious, nourishing and healing choices, you can watch your thoughts take on a more positive outlook. Shift your thoughts to those of love, self-worth, and confidence, and watch how you will be naturally and magnetically drawn to the foods that will nurture, energize, and support your body.”

2. “The Skinny Confidential: A Babe’s Sexy, Sassy Health and Lifestyle Guide” by Lauryn Evarts

Lauryn Evarts is creator of popular health and fitness blog The Skinny Confidential, and she published a book based on her blog with the same title. In her introduction, Lauryn explains that The Skinny Confidential Lifestyle is about balance and discovering to live a happy healthy life without deprivation.

The recipes in Lauryn’s book are simple and yummy, and her writing style is brief, blog-like and loaded with personality. For example, in her recipes section she introduces it with “I am not freaking Mario Batali. These measurements are not exact to the decimal. What I can promise is that they’re clean recipes — so clean, they don’t really need to be exact.” One of her kale and banana smoothies is called “The Ass Tightener.” In addition to recipes, eating tips and exercises, Lauryn offers tips on choosing a wardrobe that works for you and helping your significant other to eat healthy too.

Lauryn’s Game-Changing Recipes:

1. The Skinny Confidential Sexy Magic Elixir

2.  Peanut Butter & Banana 2-Ingredient “Ice Cream”

Lauryn’s Game-Changing Tips:

1. “My favorite dining out tip: Say no to entrees. I usually choose a salad as an appetizer and then pick an appetizer in place of an entree. Substituting apps for entrees is an effective way to practice portion control.”

2. “Tell yourself you’re going to work out seven days a week. Shooting for all seven days will force you to get in at least five or six. Plan for every day and you’re bound to get more workouts than if you had planned for five workouts.”

3. “Diet Enlightenment: The Real Secret to Weight Loss” by Rachel Pires

New mother Rachel Pires spent a lot of time learning about the science of weight loss online, and she tells us in the first chapter of her book that she has hit her goal weight. “At 5’2″ and 103 pounds,” she writes, “I weigh the exact amount I have always wanted to, and I maintain it effortlessly.”

How does Rachel do it and what is the secret that she reveals? Calorie counting. Yes, she has an entirely different philosophy from Rainbeau and Lauryn, but she explains it in practical terms and gives useful tips. She gives links to many helpful online tools and resources including LIVESTRONG’s free MyPlate calorie tracker. You can’t argue with calorie counting, as it really is a science that works. Rachel breaks it down in a way that really helps it all to make so much more sense.

Rachel’s Game-Changing Tips: 

1.By combining calorie counting with listening to your body, you’ll lose weight naturally, develop a healthy relationship with food, and set yourself up to keep the weight off for good.”

2. When determining your caloric needs using online tools such as MyPlate, when it asks for your activity level, don’t try to account for your exercise. If you have a desk job, select that you are sedentary.

3. “It’s important to recognize that most people significantly overestimate the calories they burn through exercise. You can’t always rely on your treadmill or Stairmaster to tell you how many calories you burned. For example, when I go on the treadmill for 30 minutes at 3.5 mph it says I burned 260 calories. That is probably correct for a 185-pound man. However, since I’m 5’2″ and 103 pounds, that’s pretty unlikely.”

These three gals all have different voices, approaches and attitudes, yet they seem to have all succeeded in finding a path that works to get them to their goal weights and help them maintain those weights. Maybe some of their tips and recipes will work for you. I recommend you check out their books, and let us know what works best for you.


Readers -- Do you read health and diet books? Which are the best and most helpful ones that you have read? Do any of these books sound interesting to you? Will you try any of their tips and recipes? Which ones? Leave a comment below and let us know.

Jess Barron is Editor-in-Chief of LIVESTRONG.COM. Read some of her other health and fitness articles here. A longtime foodie and fan of farmers markets, Jess particularly loves heirloom tomatoes, fresh figs with burrata cheese, and anything with pumpkin or peanut butter in it! Her love for food fuels her desire to exercise daily. In the summer of 2012, Jess lost 20 pounds in a test group for a new fitness program. Some of her favorite workout routines include walking, running, yoga, P90X, INSANITY and mixed martial arts. Jess's writing can also be found at She has appeared on MSNBC's The Most, ABC News Now and XM satellite radio[MR1] , and her writing has appeared on and Yahoo.

Follow Jess on Twitter @jessdandy. Also, you can add her on Google+ and follow her on Pinterest.

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