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The Diet Code    by Stephen Lanzalotta order for
Diet Code
by Stephen Lanzalotta
Order:  USA  Can
Warner, 2006 (2006)
Hardcover, CD
* *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

Master baker Stephen Lanzalotta's Diet Code recommends that we 'Eat Bread, Drink Wine, Lose Weight' Da Vinci style. Lanzalotta applies the Golden Ratio (3 parts vegetable, 2 parts protein, and 1 part grain carbohydrate), and advocates a return to fundamental foods. He includes a fascinating history of bread, as well as pantry tips, a grocery shopping list, best brands and food sources, cooking techniques, meal plans and delicious recipes.

Lanzalotta waxes lyrical about his craft as when he tells us that 'The physical act of making bread is a daily participation in the timeless ... there's no arguing with the soul satisfaction of making something so primal, so ancient, so nourishing and so nurturing - and sharing it with others.' In presenting his approach to healthy eating, the author warns against buying into the oversimplification of imbalanced fad diets, and talks about 'buono carbs' and the best fats. He promotes fundamental foods, including leafy greens, asparagus, peppers, lentils, whole grains, seasonal fruits, raw honey and dark chocolate. He avoids highly processed food products, sodas, juices, and alcohol other than wine and beer in moderation.

The author offers a Fundamental Food Pyramid for optimal nutrition, along with five principles for healthy living. And he presents three levels of his program, with detailed instructions on serving sizes, pairing foods to reduce glycemic load, and applying the golden proportion of food groups. About half the book is split between cooking tips, menu plans, and recipes - from Antipasti to Dolce (Desserts). I especially like the look of Sweet and Sour Eggplant and Frittata, while the Lemon Chicken has me salivating.

This is my kind of diet - one that encourages the enjoyment of bread, cheese, chocolate and wine (in moderation) in addition to healthy fruits and greens. Read The Diet Code, for a renaissance approach to health and nutrition, and for inspiration on baking ... I'm off to dust off my breadmaker and start kneading.

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