The Best 12 Healthy Eating Books of the Year

Written by Rena Goldman on July 12, 2017

best books for healthy eating

We can’t control our genetics, but we can control the way we nourish our bodies. Eating a healthy diet — along with exercise — is one of the most important things you can do to reduce your risk of developing chronic health conditions like diabetes, heart disease, and cancer.

Research shows that in order to maintain a healthy weight, a healthy diet is very important. After all, you can take in calories much faster than you can burn them off! The U.S. Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion recommends eating a variety of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy, and lean protein, while limiting sodium, added sugars, and trans fats.

Our busy modern lives don’t always make it easy for us to plan healthy meals. These books provide a guide to different types of healthy diets and plenty of recipes and hacks to keep your eating on track.

Eat, Drink, and Be Healthy: The Harvard Medical School Guide to Healthy Eating

Eat, Drink, and Be Healthy: The Harvard Medical School Guide to Healthy Eating

There’s lots of advice out there about carbohydrates and diet, and not all of it is grounded by science. Dr. Walter Willett uses research to debunk fad diets like Atkins and South Beach. He even offers a critique of USDA guidelines concerning carbs. In “Eat, Drink, and Be Healthy,” he offers a guide for balancing your diet to include the right ratio of carbs, fats, proteins, and other food groups.

The Blue Zones Solution

The Blue Zones Solution

Author Dan Buettner defines Blue Zones as places in the world where people have recorded as living the longest. “The Blue Zones Solution” explores diet and lifestyle techniques used in areas like Okinawa, Japan, Sardinia, Italy, and more. Buettner explains how you can apply these to your own daily life. There are recipes and checklists to help you create your own Blue Zone.

Hungry Girl Clean & Hungry

Hungry Girl Clean & Hungry

So many of our foods today have processed with artificial ingredients, which can be harmful to long-term health. In “Hungry Girl Clean & Hungry,” the healthy eating website and TV show tackles clean eating. All of the recipes use clean ingredients, and they’re all easy to make with ingredients from any supermarket.

Paleo Cooking with Your Instant Pot

Paleo Cooking with Your Instant Pot

An Instant Pot combines the cooking ability of a crockpot, pressure cooker, and rice cooker into one pot. The device is handy for Paleo cooking because it saves a lot of time. In “Paleo Cooking with Your Instant Pot,” Jennifer Robins shows you how to make the most out of an Instant Pot to prepare several Paleo dishes.

The 30-Day Ketogenic Cleanse

The 30-Day Ketogenic Cleanse

A ketogenic diet is a low-carb diet that’s designed to train the body to burn fat (ketones) instead of sugar for fuel. “The 30-Day Ketogenic Cleanse” serves as a kick-start for anyone who’s new to this dietary regimen or wants to return after stopping for a while. Get meal plans, shopping lists, and tips for how to maintain the ketogenic diet and learn about the negative effects of sugar.

Food Freedom Forever

Food Freedom Forever

Cravings, regained weight, and loss of energy are all common complaints of yo-yo dieters. “Food Freedom Forever is written on the premise that forming lasting healthy habits will free you from the dieting cycle. The book offers tips on how to find your own healthy eating balance and sticking to it. There’s even advice for dealing with holidays, vacations, and other social situations that have the potential to derail healthy habits.

The Heal Your Gut Cookbook

The Heal Your Gut Cookbook

Your gut could have a greater effect on your health than researchers once thought. Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride, who writes the foreword in “The Heal Your Gut Cookbook,” discusses a wide range of chronic conditions that can be caused by or made worse by poor gut health. The cookbook provides a variety of recipes and food preparation techniques to restore the proper balance of healthy bacteria in the intestines.

Food to Live By

Food to Live By

Food to Live By” takes things back to the basics. Myra Goodman, author and cofounder of Earthbound Farm, focuses on cooking simple dishes with organic ingredients. The recipes are easy to prepare and include important information about care and handling of ingredients. Goodman also includes full-colored photos of her dishes.

Wildly Affordable Organic

Wildly Affordable Organic

Eating organic is a healthier choice because the food is free of pesticides and antibiotics. Unfortunately, it can also be an expensive option. “Wildly Affordable Organic” gives you tricks to eat well without the high price tag. There are tips for how to make your family’s lifestyle greener, save money on grocery runs, and cook easy seasonal meals.

At Home in the Whole Food Kitchen

At Home in the Whole Food Kitchen

If you want to know how to stock the kitchen, ask a chef. Amy Chaplin applies her knowledge and love of food in a book that’s designed to teach the basics of healthy eating and whole foods. Her section on stocking the pantry goes beyond just what you need. She explains how and why certain ingredients are used. All recipes in “At Home in the Whole Food Kitchen” are vegetarian and many are vegan-friendly, too!

The New Primal Blueprint

The New Primal Blueprint

The New Primal Blueprint” is an update on author Mark Sisson’s “The Primal Blueprint,” released in 2009. It continues to focus on the benefits of eating the way our primal ancestors did and emphasizes Sisson’s lifestyle laws for health and well-being. In addition to expanded and updated information, the new book comes with updated photos, graphics, and cartoons.

The Nourished Kitchen

The Nourished Kitchen

Traditional foods are making a comeback as people look for a long-term and sustainable way of eating instead of fad diets. “The Nourished Kitchen” by Jennifer McGruther is a guide to eating closer to the way indigenous people did. McGruther offers over 160 recipes that are based around seasons and locations. She also celebrates traditional foods like kefir, sauerkraut, and kombucha that are rich in probiotics.

We pick these items based on the quality of the products, and list the pros and cons of each to help you determine which will work best for you. We partner with some of the companies that sell these products, which means Healthline may receive a portion of the revenues when you buy something using the links above.

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