6 health and nutrition books worth buying
Starving yourself and cutting out treats? Not here, thanks
By Carli Alman
Beauty Crew Editor / May 26 2017
In case you haven’t noticed, we’re in the midst of a health and fitness revolution. Leggings and trendy sneakers are part of everyday life, having a membership at at least three different exercise studios has become the norm, and if your meal doesn’t contain a superfood, you’re missing a beat.
Suddenly leading a healthy lifestyle is cool and aspirational, but the best part? Crazy fad diets are not a part of it. The new generation of fitspo isn’t about exercising every minute of the day or depriving yourself of food and cutting out carbs (god forbid); it’s about focusing on a balanced diet and eating the right things – snacks and treats included.
And thankfully for all of us, there are a fortune of books out there that can help guide you on what to eat, how to cook it, and how to make a healthy diet a non-torturesome part of your everyday life.
These are six of our favourite new (and semi-new) health and nutrition books to hit shelves.
Living The Healthy Life by Jessica Sepel
If you’ve ever had an unhealthy relationship with food, then this just-launched book from nutritionist and social media superstar Jessica Sepel is for you. Her second book covers everything from nutritious ingredients and what could be going on inside your body to your relationship with both food and yourself, and how you can make it a positive experience. The book doesn’t only feature 160 delicious recipes that don’t skimp on the taste factor or require chef skills, but there are handy meal plans you can easily follow if you want more routine from your eating. In the pages you’ll also find helpful tips that cover food swaps, sweet treats, what to do when eating out (hey, we’re not saints), and basically how you can indulge in delicious food in a healthy, balanced, and most importantly, guilt-free way.
The Bikini Body 28 Day Healthy Eating & Lifestyle Guide by Kayla Itsines
Chances are you’ve heard the name Kayla Itsines before. The toned brunette beauty and personal trainer inspired a literal army (aptly called Kayla’s Army) of men and women around the world to exercise and take fitness seriously with her Bikini Body Guides and Sweat With Kayla app. And now she’s come out with something new for her legion of fans – a 28-day guide to healthy eating and living that makes following a balanced and nutritious diet just as easy as her exercise program made dedication to fitness. Besides covering the education bases of food groups, nutrition, and understanding how your body works, the book outlines your meals for a four-week period (each with a corresponding recipe), and still gives you the flexibility to chop and change to suit your tastes. And just in case you were worried about complex or tasteless meals – each recipe is easy to follow and full of flavour, so you won’t be disappointed.
Falling In Love With Food: A Cookbook And A Love Story by Zoe Bingley-Pullin
Part-biography, part-recipe book, this labour of love from nutritionist and TV chef Zoe Bingley-Pullin has split up her recipes not by meal time, but more about theme, for example comfort foods, or foods inspired by her time at Le Cordon Bleu. In it you can find recipes that sound delicious and indulgent (think roast chicken, pies, cakes, risotto and laksa), but are based on the principles of healthy and nutritious eating. We love that the end of each chapter not only provides examples of a day of eating with the recipes in the book, but there are handy kitchen tips, too (like how to boil an egg!).
The Beauty Chef by Carla Oates
This gorgeously-shot coffee table-style tome from Carla Oates brings together healthy eating and glowing skin – basically, we are what we eat, so we should eat well. There’s a strong focus on unprocessed food, fermentation, and gut health and how lots of good bacterias can leave us feeling and looking better. Featuring 150 recipes that range from mouth-watering za’atar chicken and slow-cooked lamb shoulder, to fresh smoothie bowls and healthy sweet treats, you’ll be tempted to lock yourself in your kitchen and cook them all. This is also a great one to read if you’re interested in learning more about gut health, inflammation and the benefits of fermentation.
Happy Healthy Strong by Rachael Finch
Rachael Finch’s debut book says exactly what it’s about in the title – being happy, healthy and strong. While not as recipe-heavy as some of the other titles in this list, Rachael’s three-part book draws from personal experience to guide you through developing a healthy relationship with your body (listen to what it needs!), understanding what a nutritionally balanced meal looks like, how to practice mindfulness, making sure to move, and simplifying and decluttering your life and mind. There’s an incredibly handy table in there for what items to keep in your pantry, which includes what category of food it is, what it does, and how to use it in your daily life – it’s basically a dictionary for healthy eating. And if you’re a big afternoon snacker, you’ll love the double-spread that covers different topping ideas for rice cakes!
Live A Beautiful Life By Jesinta Franklin (Campbell)
This all-encompassing book from model Jesinta Franklin covers health and wellness, exercise, recipes, and beauty – all with a little peek into her life and experiences. In line with the other books in this list, the recipes found here are not about boring food or deprivation and cutting down on eating, but more about embracing delicious meals that have the right ingredients. You’ll also find a very easy-to-follow four-week exercise plan that not only gives you the exercises to do, but shows you how to do them properly. And because we simply go past an excellent beauty tutorial, we’re particularly in love with Jesinta sharing exactly how she nails a red lip, contoured cheekbones, and that radiant glow.
BONUS: Mastering Your Mean Girl by Melissa Ambrosini
While this book isn’t a newbie and isn’t specifically about healthy eating and nutrition, we felt like it deserved a mention because a huge part of living a healthy lifestyle is having a healthy mindset, and we love what this book is about: being kinder to yourself, stressing less, and increasing your happiness.
It’s almost like it's a self-help book that is dressed as a girlfriend who wants the very best for you. And while it is certainly a solid read filled with so much advice on building better relationships, coping with criticism, and not being your own worst critic, the best part is that it invites you to jot down your thoughts and feelings. It asks you to put pen to paper and answer what could be difficult questions, and while this may seem silly, the process can be quite cathartic and gives you some kind of accountability to make change. Definitely for those who need to shift their mindset and be a lot kinder to themselves!
A healthy diet can also mean a healthy complexion. These are the foods you should eat for better skin.
Main image photography: Sevak Babakhani
Image credits: Supplied
Carli was BEAUTYcrew’s Editor from launch in 2016 until May 2020. You can find her words right here on BEAUTYcrew, and previously on beautyheaven.