THE BACK STORY
While I was visiting my younger brother, Mark, in Los Angeles, we were discussing what to make for dinner one night. He looked me straight in the eyes, and in a genuine, slightly exasperated voice said, “All I want is a cookbook with really good recipes that won’t make me fat. And, I want to know how many calories I’m eating, so I can burn them oﬀ in the gym. Do you think you can do that?”This calorie-and-exercise–focused cookbook is my gift to Mark, my family, you, and your families, and anyone else you happen to be cooking for. My unique approach is designed to be sustainable and practical, with enough options to feed families whose members have a range of diﬀerent calorie and nutritional needs.While I was developing and testing the recipes, compiling nutritional breakdowns, and calculating exercise values with my coauthor, Elaine Trujillo, MS, RD, I became slimmer. A lot slimmer. In fact, I had people asking me what I was doing to lose so much weight. I told them that I was keeping track of how many calories I consume daily and how many I burn oﬀ. Doing this caused me to eat less, about twenty percent less than my previous intake, and to exercise more. I was not dieting. I was eating smarter, healthier, and the results were amazing. This is not a fad diet book: one that occupies the hot seat for a year and then fades away when the next hip-diet comes along. It’s a supremely practical health-based cookbook for everyone, singles and families, looking to improve on what they eat, how much they eat, and how many calories they burn oﬀ. No food groups have been eliminated. My plan is not low-carb—it’s smart carb. It’s not low-fat—it uses healthy fats in moderation. And, it’s not high protein—it advocates for lean proteins in appropriate amounts, with lots of vegetable protein sources. You will see that no strict menus or diet plans need to be adhered to. The goal is for you to create your own menus to suit you and your family’s individual calorie needs and eating habits. I’ve read my share of diet books, followed the prescribed diets for two weeks (usually while cooking separate meals for my family), and then shelved the books, where they continue to collect dust today. Yes, I lost a bit of weight, but as most folks have experienced, after stopping the diet, a few weeks later the weight comes right back on. This cookbook oﬀers a lifestyle plan, one that will empower your to make the smartest choices every time a food decision needs to be made. My goal with
Calories In, Calories Out Cookbook
is to change the way you cook, eat, drink, and exercise. Admittedly, it will take more time to produce a homemade meal, to pack lunch for work or school and to go to the gym, jog, walk, or practice yoga or Pilates. But your eﬀorts will pay oﬀ. I guarantee they will. Every positive lifestyle change you make is an investment in your health and overall well-being.
WHY I WROTE THIS BOOK