Registered dietician Connie Gutterson has penned the Sonoma Diet straight from the Sonoma Valley, which explains the Mediterranean theme running throughout the book.
What makes the Sonoma Diet stand out is the theme: ‘the most flavorful weight loss plan under the sun’. In keeping with this promise, the Sonoma Diet allows 10 easily available power foods including vegetables, antioxidants and fiber. There’s even wine on the food list! Without a doubt, the diet offers a nutritious and tasty path to weight loss.
Also, it is very simple to follow as there is no calorie counting or portion size. All you need to do is keep track of the size of your plate. This is very interesting as one of the ways to eat less calories is to actually eat from smaller plates. We tend to fill up our plate and eat everything on it. When you use small plates you will eat less.
The Sonoma Diet Overview
Most popular diet programs lack structure. Not the Sonoma Diet program. This diet is structured into three waves (or phases). The first wave is for 10 days and is intended to be a launch pad for your weight loss efforts. The second wave is where all the action takes place. The third phase is the maintenance phase where old habits are shed and new lifestyle habits are adopted. The overall emphasis of the diet is to take in nutritious food in a sensible manner, in moderation and for the rest of your life.
The Sonoma Diet introduces a novel ‘plate-and-bowl’ concept. Dieters need not control portion size; instead, they are asked to use a 7-inch plate for breakfast and a 9 inch plate for lunch and dinner. Fill the plates according to the instructions in the book and you have portion control on autopilot. No need for any measuring or weighing. Convenient indeed. To that extent, the Sonoma Diet is a real-world diet that can be followed by busy people leading busy lives.
The 320 page diet program was available as a book first, but now, the book gets ample support from the online fee-based version, where you find over 900 recipes, menu planners, diaries, automated trackers, forums and so on.
The Sonoma Diet Pros:
- Balanced approach to weight loss
- Wholesome nutrition
- Emphasis on tasty food
- Emphasis on acquiring a healthy lifestyle
- Emphasis is on what to eat rather than what to avoid
- Over 500 recipes
- Detailed meal plans
- Extensive online support (paid)
The Sonoma Diet Cons
- Restrictive at times
- Low in carbohydrates in the first wave
- Vegetable servings are restricted
- Lots of forbidden foods
- Involves lots of cooking (simple, but takes time)
- No solution for hunger pangs and cravings
- Only a perfunctory nod to exercise
The Sonoma Diet is not revolutionary in any way. In fact, there are vague resemblances to the South Beach diet. That said, the diet is easy to follow if you have the will to restrict food intake and want a healthy and wholesome path to weight loss. Its structure, detailed menu plans and extensive library of recipes encourage compliance. This explains the reason for its widespread popularity.