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Publishers WeeklyDietician Yablon-Brenner and holistic health counselor Bessinger, who consult and teach as the "Real Food Moms," offer tips for improving the family diet in this well-meaning, if repetitive, volume. The duo argues that decades of declining health in American children and adults can be blamed squarely on the "Standard American Diet"-more a lifestyle than an actual diet-characterized by processed food, stress and too much time in front of TV and computer screens. The authors' remedies-fresh foods, plenty of water, more exercise, etc.-will surprise nobody, yet the duo have an irritating habit of repeating themselves on those very topics. A lengthy guide to vegetables and pantry staples proves helpful for readers wondering how to incorporate fennel, beets or buckwheat into the family meal, but the duo's recipes often fall short. Sautéing is their go-to method for seemingly all greens, and their mix-and-match dish-crafting approach (a couple items from column A, an item each from columns B and C) might work for salads, but comes off as lazy and impractical anywhere else. Passages on industrial farming, restaurant eating and the American experience of satiety are interesting diversions, but not enough to break the volume's monotony; one comes away thinking it could have worked better as a magazine article.
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