I was excited to discover the book and studied it for several months before starting to use the information. There is much good about the book but there are some things that anyone looking to purchase an "ultimate" low GL diet book might want to consider...go and look through the book at a bookstore and see if what I'm going to say is true for you or not.
The book could be better organized. Many pages of my copy are folded in so that I could find critical information quickly.
Some of the critical information pages that could have been better arranged so that the reader could find them easily (should the book have page indexes?) are:
p. 57 No Forbidden Foods - four snack foods, each equaling 5 GL (important to be able to find that -- and why do I have to type out an index card to keep the information where I can find it since that's what I bought the book for?)
p. 67 - Glycemix Index (list) of common foods (some only common in Aussieland) - This is a critical list. So that page is folded in my book so that I can find the list, though the list only runs to about 40 lines. Surely there must be a longer list? And surely it should be somewhere else, not hidden within the book?*
p. 75 - a "Top TiP" about glucomannan - another folded page because the top tip is hidden. Why could this be put into a "Top Tip" index at the back?
p. 78 "Fatburning food combinations" - another possible index in the back of the book
p. 97, another "Top Tip" at the bottom of the page and at the top a chart detailing the whole seeds and seed oils the dieter should be taking daily. Is this important info hidden away, or is it not? Seems not to the author, but it was to me. Why isn't it easier to find?
p. 111 Allergy Testing Gold Standards - important to me but not to the author? Another item for a list at the back of the book?
p. 129 A list of daily supplements and fat-burning supplements - hidden away. What if most people go right to the back of the book where the recipes are and miss this info? Pretty critical to have it handy, I think.
p. 134 How Much Exercise? - again, hidden rather than on a list or in an index where it could easily be found.
pp. 150-152 The Breakfast Action plan - Now this of all things should be located somewhere where readers can turn to it without having to create their own index system. This is the picture of of your daily breakfast, and you need to be able to find it without thumbing through the book or writing the pages on the cover (which doesn't have note-writing space).
p. 155 The Best Egg-based Breakfasts and a list of breads with their glycemic loads - got tired of hunting, so folded the page double.
pp. 161-152 How Big is a Protein Serving and a list, Starchy Vegetables.
If these deserve pages of their own with subheads, don't they deserve to be located where they can be found? Folded page.
p. 170 Chart of what you main meals will look like. Needs to jump right out at readers, but doesn't. Folded page.
P. 189 The when and how of supplements - and how, this is important. But it's hidden.
p. 232 Get up and go - sounds great, hm? Holford mentions "get up and go" mixture so many times that when you finally get to the hidden recipe it's a joy, until you see the line "1 serving Get UP & Go Powder", whose explanation I never did find, nor is a source listed for its purchase. Is this some magic Aussieland thing that is for them only? Should say so, then.
p. 306 Eat to Beat the Blues - important. Why hidden?
There were other pages that I didn't fold which I couldn't find again, and I'm not going to reread the book to find them.
None of the items on the pages I've listed exist in the index pages at the front of the book. "Why" is the question.
*To be fair, the book is about Glycemic Load, not about Glycemic Index, and perhaps the publishers don't want to confuse people. But if they include a tiny list of foods and their glycemic indexes, why not include the list that's available all over the internet and put it in the back of the book as Appendix 3. Appendix 2 on page327 is "The Complete Glycemic Load of Foods".
To give the book credit, there is a good explanation of glycemic load and it's measures (high/medium/low) on the first two pages of Appendix 2, and the list of foods is about 10 1/2 pages long. Some foods will be familiar to U.S. readers, some may not. Some I assume I recognize but I may not because "puffed rice crackers" may or may not mean "rice cakes". Many items on the list may or may not be widely available in the U.S., and I did not find a list of sources for the products that were unfamiliar. This would take a lot of google research time which I don't want to do.
Following the food list is a Poriton uide at a Glance, and a chart listing average exercise per day (in minutes) for height groups from 5 feet through 6 feet 6 inches, and the total GLs per day for each height range from zero minutes exercise through 120 minutes. That's quite nice.
Appendix 3 where the GI chart could have been printed is titled "The Dangers of High-Protein Diets". This comes out of left field, because high protein diets are not the subject of this book, and this is waste of space IN THIS BOOK, since the book has "organizational issues".
Appendix 4 is "Keeping Track and Contributing to the Reseearch" - hmmm, no thanks.
Appendix 5 "Figuring Out Your Training Heart Rate Zone" will be helpful for some but not for me, as my chosen exercises are walking, riding bicycle or exercycle, and using mini stepper, and I don't count my heartbeats. I'm not going for flippancy, but if my heart is beating it'll adjust to my walking faster or slower. People who are trainers may like this but probably the majority find it a little elite. If this book is meant for elite athletes, that should be stated on the cover. Superfluous frippery.
The diet sorta works. I can say that my blood sugar feels stable (no peaks and valleys even though I'm hypothyroid and insulin resistant) and though I'm no longer looking at Holfords book (actually would like to find something similar that is better organized) I'm still feeling better following his program, more or less, than I have for years. I have more energy and a couple of weeks ago I had an opportunity to walk with a friend for 60 minutes, and the next day again for 45 minutes. At the end of that week when I weighed myself I had lost 2.5 pounds. For me that's amazing proof of the efficacy of the GL plan AND of the efficacy of long strolls. If I kept that up every week, in 24 weeks I would be at my target weight.
So the dietary plan is good and the information is good, but the book cries out to be reorganized so that there is some rational order to the chapters and the information in them, and someone has to index all the CRITICAL info into some sort of appendix.
The experience of finding so much good information while being continually disappointed and frustrated by the lack of organization accounts for the three stars. I recommens Holford's GL information and I agree with him that supplements are critical, but I like his OPTIMUM NUTRITION BIBLE and his website better than I like this book.
Sorry Patrick. You have a lot of work to do on this one.