August 21st, 2013
Starve Mode By Leigh Peele: Book Review
“Have I messed up my metabolism?” “Am I in starvation mode?” “I know I should eat more, but won’t I gain weight if I increase calories?” “How long does it take to restore a “damaged” metabolism back to a revving metabolism?” “Am I stuck at a plateau and if so how do I break it?” “At my age, is there no hope for my metabolism?” If you’ve ever asked yourself questions like these, there is an important new book you will want to read…. “Starve Mode: Explaining and Resetting Metabolic Problems That Can Come From Dieting.”
I’ve intended to post regular fitness and fat loss book reviews for Burn the Fat Blog readers this year and I apologize for not posting more. This new book – Starve Mode – is one I could not pass up the opportunity to review. In fact, I was one of the first people to receive a very early preview copy, since the author – Leigh Peele – and I have worked together before for quite a few years.
When I finished reading Starve Mode, I was so impressed with it that I told Leigh I would be thrilled to write a book review. When she replied, I was quite flattered when she asked me if I’d like to go one step further and write the foreword. I did, with pleasure.
So instead of writing a traditional review, I decided, with Leigh’s permission, to reprint the entire foreword here on the blog. I think it serves as a great review and will help you decide if the book is right for you. If you answered yes to any of the questions above, especially anything like, “have I screwed up my metabolism, this one is a must-read.
If you have questions, please post them in the comments. I’ll answer any that I can and/or forward them to Leigh and she will pop in here and answer them personally.
Train hard and expect success,
author of Burn the Fat Feed the Muscle and The Body Fat Solution
Starve Mode: Foreword by Tom Venuto
In Leigh Peele’s previous book, Fat Loss Troubleshoot, making “troubleshooting” the big idea was a stroke of genius. That’s because we almost never reach our body composition or body weight goals in a straight line. The essence of continuous progress is navigating through all the inevitable ups and downs and getting beyond frustrating plateaus.
In Starve Mode, Leigh has continued her tireless quest to research and share the facts about fat loss physiology and psychology in another brilliant book that builds on and goes even deeper than her first one.
Starve Mode gives scientific explanations and practical solutions to some of the biggest challenges faced by dieters and fitness enthusiasts, including problems with metabolism, hormones, water retention, disordered eating and unexplainable body weight fluctuations – predicaments that drive even seasoned veterans crazy.
A major focus is metabolism. No other word is used so often by dieters, exercisers and athletes, yet is so completely misunderstood. In Leigh’s Starve Mode, finally, an expert has de-mystified metabolism, busted common metabolism myths, and uncovered the truth about metabolic damage and metabolic repair. In this book, you’ll learn what a slow or fast metabolism really means, the factors that affect metabolic health, all the most accurate ways to calculate your metabolic rate, and of course, the truth about starvation mode.
This book is written for men and women. I can confirm first hand that this information is vital for men to know – for our own benefit, and for helping us understand the differences between us and our female companions. While reading Starve Mode, women may find in the author, for the first time ever, a coach and friend who understands and thoroughly addresses their gender’s unique problems – both mental and physical. Even better, after explaining these female metabolic, hormonal and emotional challenges, Leigh provides the solutions in a practical way that cannot be found in any other book or program.
True to the style of Leigh’s entire body of work – her books, blogs and podcasts - Starve Mode is one-hundred percent objective and evidence-based, so you can trust that the information is accurate, or even go verify the data or investigate further yourself. You’ll learn enough science after one read to be the most informed person in your gym, or even in your entire town – that’s how deep the detail is.
If you’re a person who is always looking for information that’s new and cutting edge, with a level of sophistication beyond the basics, you’ve found the right book. On every topic, Leigh begins where others leave off. A prime example: No book more thoroughly and accurately discusses how to repair, rebuild or refeed a “damaged” metabolism after a period of restrictive dieting. Other books only introduce the subject. Leigh leaves no question unanswered. If you’ve ever been worried (or terrified) that you’ve ruined your metabolism, you can take a sigh of relief, having this book in your library.
Do you want the truth about hormones? This is your science-based hormone bible. Want to make sense out of nutrition and fitness research? You’ll get step-by-step coaching on how to find it, read it, make sense of it and become your own expert in the process. Want the real scoop on exercise, movement and Non-exercise activity thermogenesis (NEAT)? There’s no better resource: Leigh’s experience with calorie and activity monitoring devices is unmatched and the fascinating discussions about her discoveries will make for many “aha moments” for every reader.
Starve Mode is free of agenda, dogma or zealotry. Leigh freely offers her opinions, but she doesn’t push an ideology. Instead, she helps you find the approach that’s best for you. Leigh doesn’t sugarcoat anything. She tells it like it is – not just what you want to hear, but what you need to hear – even when that includes, “YOU are solely responsible for the condition your body is in now.”
Leigh says there’s no one who wouldn’t benefit from reading this book, and I agree. I would add that Starve Mode is such a smart, thoughtful book, that it will be most appreciated by the smart, thoughtful reader who wants an education about the science, as well as a plan of action, not one or the other, and not surface-level pop-diet advice.
Bottom line: Do what Leigh suggests and don’t skim this book – study it – because Starve Mode is clearly the new definitive guide to getting a healthy, fat-burning metabolism.