The 28-Day Gout Diet Plan: The Optimal Nutrition Guide To Manage Gout, by Sophia Kamveris
It may be a bit bold, if not presumptuous, of me to say so, but this book is not an optimal nutrition guide when it comes to managing gout. To be sure, many of the recipes in this book are healthy and likely to aid in encouraging heart health, and they do at least avoid sugars and high fructose corn syrups that are major encouragement to gout flare-ups, as well as seeking to minimize sodium. I can also praise the author’s intent to manage gout to avoid gout attacks as well, being someone who occasionally and very painfully suffers from gout myself. But this book does not offer the best advice when it comes to dealing with gout, not least because the author includes quite a few pork dishes and even highly touts (usually pig-provided) gelatin as ingredients in some of these dishes. And a great many foods, where they do not include pork, include other inflammatory foods like peppers and tomatoes, which makes using this book a bit more dubious than one would think. Far from being an optimal nutrition guide in dealing with gout, this book has some major shortcomings in its approach.
As far as its materials go, this book is a bit less than 200 pages and consists of two parts and about 11 chapters in total. The author begins with a foreword and introduction where she tries to prove herself as an authority in how to nutritionally manage gout in such a way as to provide not only food for someone who suffers from this immensely painful disease but also other family members concerned about diet restrictions. The first part of the book consists of three chapters where the author first defines gout (1), discusses how gout management deals with nutrition in general (2), and then defines a gout meal plan over the course of four weeks based on the recipes in the book (3). The second part of the book, quite sensibly, deals with eight chapters of recipes that start with breakfasts (4) and then move on to soups, salads, and sandwiches (5), meatless main dishes (6), poultry (7), beef, pork, and lamb dishes (8), fish and seafood (9), dessert (10), as well as various staples, dressings, and condiments (11). After that the author discusses measurement conversions and provides references, some resources for further reading, a recipe index, as well as another general index for the book.
In reading a book like this which amounts to a cookbook with some supplemental material, my main goal is to see if there are any dishes here that are worth trying. And although I do not appreciate the book’s frequent use of tomatoes and peppers and pork products in the ingredients, there are plenty of dishes here that are well worth trying: almond-crusted salmon with green beans, baked apple, balsamic chicken with brussels sprouts, chicken satay with peanut sauce, flank steak chimichurri with grilled vegetables, Mediterranean lamb rib chops with roasted fennel, slow-cooker turkey breast with root vegetables, spinach, walnut, and strawberry salad with citrus vinaigrette, and turkey with wild rice and kale among them. And ultimately, while I could take or leave the author’s misguided meal plans and somewhat dodgy food choices, there was a great deal here to take to heart, including the way that gout is connected with a whole host of other co-morbidities that are extremely problematic based on my personal history. If this is not quite the ideal cookbook for someone like myself, it does at least present the understanding that there is a market for gout-friendly cookbooks, and at least gives some hope that someone would make one that was more in line with my own dietary restrictions that are even more narrow than this book’s advice.