Happy New Year! I bet there are many of you reading this that are trying to lose weight in an attempt to get healthier right? Well, I am not overweight by definition however, I did have about 7 pounds ‘magically’ appear on me that I am determined to get rid of them. Therefore, when I was offered a copy of the book Cinch! Conquer Cravings, Drop Pounds, and Lose Inches by Cynthia Sass (who blogs for Shape Magazine), I accepted.
I actually received the book in mid-December and decided to read and give this a try between Christmas and New Year’s. But first, a bit more about the book: Cynthia Sass, the creator and co-author of the New York Times Bestselling Flat Belly Diet presents her new break-through, 30-day weight loss program Cinch! targeted to end overeating, leaving dieters feeling full and satisfied while enjoying the best food combinations to burn fat and boost metabolism.
The program starts with the 5-day Fast Forward plan that ends erratic eating by focusing on five simple foods—spinach, almonds, raspberries, eggs, and yogurt (or vegan-friendly alternatives)—eaten in a variety of combinations. These first 5 days promise up to 8 pounds of weight loss. Each of the five foods is low in calories yet loaded with nutrients and natural satiety-boosters, which allows you to “detox” from junk foods without feeling deprived.
The remaining 25 days of the program are packed with foods that offer maximum fat-burning, improving metabolism while ‘unlocking’ the secret to the body’s satiety center with foods that the latest research shows turn on the body’s “I’m full” signal. As in Flat Belly Diet, all of the meals for the full 30-day program are created for you and are fully interchangeable. As an added feature, vegan and vegetarian options are covered so the plan can be adapted to fit any lifestyle.
My Attempt: In order to get a good feel for this book, I decided to jump in a try the 5-day Fast Forward section although this is optional and you can start on the 30-Day program from the start. The Five Fast Forward Foods are restricted to: Spinach, Raspberries, Almonds, Organic eggs, and Plain Organic Yogurt. To be honest, I am not a big fan of raspberries or spinach however, I usually compensate by eating plenty of baby spinach and raspberries in parfaits or blended into shakes. But I still knew that this would be tough so I opted for 3 days instead of 5. This was done for two reasons: 1. Because I knew Christmas Eve would be full of a Portuguese specialities I had to eat or my mother in-law might cry. If I was obese, she would let it slide but to here I am already underweight in their culture’s eyes (and I mean that in a loving way). 2. I also knew I was making lots of the families favorites on Christmas day so I would never stick to the restricted 5 foods…then again, I do not think I would have lasted 5 days on just the 5 foods anyway.
The three days were a struggle, as I would expect them to be as most of us eat too much and too often. Plus, with food and dieting on your mind, it only adds more stress. The recipe options for the 5 foods were great and tasty but I realized that I am more of the 30-day program type of person. I did lose 2 pounds so I bet I would have lost a few more if I was exercising and stuck to the 5 days. If you need to get quick results to stick with a diet, the 5-day Fast Forward portion of the plan may be the right step! A few days after Christmas I began on the 25-day portion of the plan and have lost 2 more pounds. I did mess up on New Year’s Eve and am pretty much done with the plan as starting tomorrow I am doing the 28-day detox plan via Whole Living Magazine.
The Cinch ‘Core’ is the program you follow for either 30days or 25 days if you did the 5 day fast forward. The foundation of the Core is that each meal is composed of five pieces: produce, whole grain, protein, plant-based fat and either a fruit or vegetable from a provided list. All of the recipes are provided and you can choose which one you want each time. Note that red meat is not a part of this diet which may make it even more challenging for some people. Oh, and I must let you know that as part of the program you get to eat chocolate – yes, you read that correctly. Information on emotional eating and walking is also provided in the book.
Here are my thoughts on the book/diet:
*You can eat normal foods using the provided recipes but on a prescribed schedule which may or may not appeal to you. I also appreciate that you do get to enjoy more ‘normal’ foods than say, a diet if only cookies etc. (you know what I am talking about).
* I do appreciate the book provided education about the nutrients found in the 5 foods included in the fast forward part of the program but there was too much information provided and can get dull.
* The foods in the book are healthy and good for you so there is no buying 300 bars that are only for the diet and not real food.
*If you do stick to this program, you will lose weight as you are restricting calories and drinking plenty of water but as with many diets, be careful when the program ends. You will need to plan ahead on getting back into a healthier lifestyle and make sure you have made the appropriate adaptations so you do not put the weight back on again.
*Disclosure: The book was provided for an honest review by One2One Network but I was not compensated.