Naturally Thin: What You Can Eat
As a natural foods chef, Frankel advocates eating:
- Raw foods when possible.
- Local, organic produce.
- Foods with ingredients you can pronounce.
- A mostly vegetarian diet.
Specifically, she says you should eat lots of low-calorie veggies, small amounts of fruits, whole grains, and meat, and moderate amounts of protein.
No foods are off limits; she even shows you which candy bars are best (or at least, less bad). But portions should be small -- except for the veggies.
A template for daily meals is provided, calling for:
- 1 carb-based meal
- 1 protein-based meal
- 1 carb- or protein-based meal
- 1-2 servings of fruit or juice
- Unlimited vegetables, except starchy ones
- 2 servings of fats (optional)
- 2 servings of sweets
- 2 small snacks (100-200 calories, like a small bowl of popcorn or fruit and a few nuts)
- 2 beverages, including alcohol
- 6-8 glasses of water
- 2 exceptions (such as a few bites of a dessert, rich entrée, half a piece bread with butter or olive oil, a glass of wine)
Although the sample menus don't specify portion sizes, some guidance is offered on normal serving sizes for some foods.
A sample menu on the Naturally Thin plan might include:
Breakfast: Vegetable frittata with feta cheese and 1/2 pita
Lunch: Bruschetta appetizer with tomato and mozzarella
Snack: Bag of soy chips
Dinner: Soup, vegetable stir-fry over brown rice
Sweet Snack: Fruit skewers with a few nuts
Naturally Thin: How It Works
The principles and rules are laid out in the first 10 chapters, followed by a description of a week of living the Naturally Thin way. Frankel describes a week's worth of her food intake, along with the rationale for her choices and examples of how to implement the 10 rules.
Frankel recommends using the "differential" concept to make better food choices – a way to balance your splurges and calorie savings.
"If you can enjoy turkey bacon as much as regular bacon, you should go for the lighter, healthier option," she says. "But if you can’t, then just eat a few bites of the higher-fat food that you love."
Naturally Thin contains more than 30 recipes, including Frankel's famous Skinny Girl margarita. Throughout the book are "Bethenny Bytes"’ -- meal ideas, tips for dining out, snacks, and satisfying cravings.
Frankel recommends regular exercise, but doesn’t stress it, saying "it goes hand in hand with obsessive dieting and over-exercising can be counterproductive."
She notes that exercise doesn’t have to mean going to the gym. Find something you enjoy -- walk, try yoga, or just be active, she says. And, if you miss your workout for a day or two, no problem.
Naturally Thin: What the Experts Say
Weight loss counselor and American Dietetic Association spokeswoman Elisa Zied, who was once overweight herself, gives a mixed review to Naturally Thin.