Paleo for Beginners: Essentials to Get Started Info

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Discover why more people continue to choose
Paleo for Beginners—the New York Times bestselling
Paleo cookbook that has sold over 150,000 copies sold—more than any
other Paleo cookbook.

Paleo is not just another fad
diet; it is the diet humans were designed to eat. But getting started on
any new diet can be challenging—even one as primal as Paleo.
Paleo for Beginners is your one-stop Paleo cookbook for feeling
healthy, losing weight, and increasing your energy level. By focusing
on low-carb, high-protein meals that remove all processed foods, this
Paleo cookbook will help decrease your odds of developing common health
ailments such as diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, and more.


Straightforward yet comprehensive, this Paleo cookbook offers:


  • A 7-day step-by-step plan for beginners,
    complete with a Paleo shopping guide
  • 145
    Paleo-friendly foods
    that you can enjoy—and an extensive list
    of what food items you should avoid
  • 114 easy,
    mouthwatering recipes
    for every meal, such as Eggs Benedict
    Paleo Style, High-Protein Grain-Free Burgers, Chicken Avocado Wraps, and
    Paleo Waffles

“This is a good Paleo cookbook for
beginners like myself. It gave me a way to start paleo and a meal plan
to follow the first two weeks. After reading this book, I know that this
is the diet that I can follow and not feel like I'm missing
out.”—Sabrina R., Amazon Verified Purchase


Average Ratings and Reviews
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Reviews for Paleo for Beginners: Essentials to Get Started:

2

Oct 02, 2012

Holy guacamole! Would you look at all these glowing 5-star reviews for this book! Glowing 5-star reviews from Goodreads members who can't even be bothered to create an avatar picture. Really people? 5-stars? This book was AMAZING in your opinion? Come on! It is a 76 page e-book, that just skims the Paleo Diet topic. A short e-book that was given away for free on Amazon awhile back. Yet all these people think it was AMAZING! It just always amazes me when I read something, then come here to see Holy guacamole! Would you look at all these glowing 5-star reviews for this book! Glowing 5-star reviews from Goodreads members who can't even be bothered to create an avatar picture. Really people? 5-stars? This book was AMAZING in your opinion? Come on! It is a 76 page e-book, that just skims the Paleo Diet topic. A short e-book that was given away for free on Amazon awhile back. Yet all these people think it was AMAZING! It just always amazes me when I read something, then come here to see what others thought of it, and see reviews like this book has. Okay people, whatever.

This is a short e-book introduction to the Paleo Diet, a diet based on what our prehistoric hunter, gatherer, forager ancestors would have eaten, which the book describes as "Meats, eggs and seafood make up the majority of the day's calories, followed by fats from plant foods, fruits and vegetables, and then nuts and seeds. The Paleo diet is a high-protein/low carbohydrate diet."
Okay, so far, so good. High protein, low carb. Let's see where this goes.

Now we get the list of forbidden foods. "These eliminated foods included processed foods, alcohol, grains, legumes, and sugar."
Hmm, okay I get processed foods, sugar, and alcohol. But grains and legumes are totally out? What is wrong with legumes?

Hmm, and condiments...ketchup is out, mustard is allowed. Our prehistoric ancestors made mustard??? I don't see it. Oh well, we continue.

Beverages...Water should be your primary beverage." Yes, I can see our prehistoric ancestors drinking water.
"Tea and coffee are acceptable on the Paleo diet, as long as you use almond milk to lighten them, rather than dairy milk."
Hmm, okay, our prehistoric ancestors did this??? I don't see it.

Okay, now we are on to the recommended meats. Here are a few: Alligator, Bear, Bison, Caribou, Elk, Emu, Goose, Kangaroo, Ostrich, Rattlesnake, Turtle"
Hey, you forgot opossum and rat!

Most fruits are recommended because of course you can forage for them. Okay, I'll buy that.

Most vegetables are recommended too. But did our hunter forager ancestors grow vegetable gardens?? I'm getting confused!

Now what do we avoid...let's start with dairy...any and all dairy. Okay, I don't imagine our prehistoric ancestors were out milking the wild buffalo, so I'll buy this.

But we also have to avoid grains?? Including barley, buckwheat, corn, millet, oats, rye, and wheat. I'm confused again. Our prehistoric ancestors had gardens to grow pumpkins, squash, turnips, tomatoes, eggplant, cucumbers, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, bell peppers, etc. but they couldn't grow barley, even though Wikipedia tells me that barley "contributed to the broad historical patterns that human history has followed over approximately the last 13,000 years."
Man has been eating barley for 13,000 years, yet it doesn't count as Paleo??

Also off limits are legumes, including all beans, peas, and lentils? What gives with this? If our prehistoric ancestors could grow all the other garden vegetables, why couldn't they throw a few beans and peas into their gardens? Beans and peas are some of the easiest things to grow! They are also easy to forage and gather!

Then we get a quiz to help us decide "What Kind of Caveman Are You? (I am not letting my husband see this quiz!)

Then we get wonderfully helpful hints for starting our new Paleo diet, including such amazing advice as "get all the forbidden foods out of the house."
Oh, I never would have thought of that!

Then come sample menus, with variations for weekdays, weekends, and entertaining. We even get a few recipes, including "Caveman Trail Mix"!

And then, well that is it. The end of the book. A short 76 page introduction to the Paleo diet.

So, while this was a slightly interesting, I still don't see why there are all these glowing, amazing, 5-star reviews? But, okay, whatever.
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5

Apr 29, 2014

I'm in the process of switching to the Paleo Diet, and this book provides a short and sweet introduction! It's got handy lists of allowed foods, and then recipes for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. You can always branch off to longer books after getting the essentials here.
5

Oct 31, 2012


I don’t like counting calories and I don’t like eating rabbit food. The Paleo’s high protein, low sugar seemed to be more my style. It took less than an hour to read John Chatham’s essentials about the Paleo diet and become convinced this is a good plan. Chatham talks as if he is in the room with me. He explains why and how, gives comprehensive do and don’t lists and assists with a one-week transitional strategy – all succinctly and easily comprehended. Read the book, reorganize the pantry, shop
I don’t like counting calories and I don’t like eating rabbit food. The Paleo’s high protein, low sugar seemed to be more my style. It took less than an hour to read John Chatham’s essentials about the Paleo diet and become convinced this is a good plan. Chatham talks as if he is in the room with me. He explains why and how, gives comprehensive do and don’t lists and assists with a one-week transitional strategy – all succinctly and easily comprehended. Read the book, reorganize the pantry, shop for all the meat, seafood, fruit and veges you want and you’re ready to go. ...more
3

Nov 29, 2019

Straight forward

The book is good for what it’s supposed to do. Rey easy to understand. Great beginner recipes to make for meals.
4

Oct 06, 2018

Looking for recipes...

Not really interested in any diet pitch, but I do have food allergies (gluten, dairy, and nightshades) and hoped to find some recipes to try. The book provided a good selection and inspired me to add a few new staples to my pantry. Looking forward to experimenting.
3

Apr 19, 2018

Quick and consise with loads of recpies, probably a continuation and back up of his other paleo books. Good to get a good quick glimpse about what paleo is all about and simple and easy to understand with some interesting suggestions in the recipes.
3

Nov 22, 2018

I did enjoy this book. Lots of information. I know grain free is best. But grain free pancakes didn’t sound good. Even though the recipes were varied but not realistic for me, I will still try this way of eating.
5

Mar 19, 2019

Great cookbook

Changing the way you eat is a challenge. I found this book not so much a "diet" as a change in lifestyle. The recipes in the book give you a great variety of goods & not real complicated.
4

Jun 22, 2018

Helpful Guide

I found this book to be a good start on understanding paleo. I’m looking for a diet that can be used for weight loss and a healthy eating plan for my family. I have just started researching.
5

Jan 04, 2019

Looked over a lot of tasty dishes, going to take it slow and try some out. I wanted to eat healthier and heard things about Paleolithic diets and Ketogenic diets. This is a good start.
5

Feb 28, 2018

Easy guide for Paleo Beginners

This book was very informative and a quick read. It has great, simple, and tasty recipes for beginners like myself
4

Dec 16, 2017

Good starter book and beginning grocery list.


.Good starter book and beginning grocery list. And a quick read . I have to write a little more to submit this review.
4

Sep 13, 2017

Just started

Just started with the Paleo Detox and got the book for some simple recipes. I have lost 10 pounds in 7 days already.
5

Aug 21, 2018

I liked it.

Very good information !! I am very happy with all the recipes. Lots of helpful suggestions. I am going to see if it works for me.
5

Feb 20, 2018

Great for beginning the Paleo diet. Simply explained, short, to the point, with recipes, lists of foods to eat and to avoid, and discussion of health benefits.
4

Oct 13, 2019

My review

An informative book that I would recommend. Has good recipes that are very easy to follow. Easy to read pages.
4

Apr 22, 2018

A perfect start

Very informative and detailed. A good start and a wonderful amount of recipes to try. Can't wait to dig in.
5

Sep 27, 2012

As the title states, this is a great book for Paleo beginners! It’s difficult to leave behind processed foods, grains, starches, and refined sugars and base your diet on lean meats, nuts, and plant fats, and Chatham’s book shows he understands how hard it can be to make these changes. He starts with general information about the Paleo diet, but then focuses on preparing the reader’s mind, body, and physical environment in order to follow through and make a successful shift into the Paleo diet As the title states, this is a great book for Paleo beginners! It’s difficult to leave behind processed foods, grains, starches, and refined sugars and base your diet on lean meats, nuts, and plant fats, and Chatham’s book shows he understands how hard it can be to make these changes. He starts with general information about the Paleo diet, but then focuses on preparing the reader’s mind, body, and physical environment in order to follow through and make a successful shift into the Paleo diet lifestyle. He even provides a whole chapter that gives you a daily task to complete the week before starting the paleo diet, so that the transition will be as easy as possible.
There are also a lot of practical tools included in the book. It includes an extensive list of acceptable Paleo foods, and the meal plans and recipes are very simple. There are hints on where to shop for high quality foods, what time of day to eat, how to avoid common pitfalls, and even quizzes for personalizing your approach to the diet. Chatham does not dismiss the difficulties you may encounter when you begin the diet, and I appreciate his realistic approach. He wants you to see that the initial challenges are well worth the gains, and help you truly adopt the Paleo lifestyle.
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5

Oct 19, 2012

The book, “Paleo for Beginners” is a short book on the paleolithic diet. The book contains facts, recipes, and meal plans to help the reader succeed . The paleo diet is actually one that makes sense, after all, people in the paleolithic age were not exposed to carbohydrates, dairy or processed foods. As a result, the paleo people did not have illness or obesity like there is in today’s society. The book gives the reader the types of food a person should eat and avoid. In addition, it contains The book, “Paleo for Beginners” is a short book on the paleolithic diet. The book contains facts, recipes, and meal plans to help the reader succeed . The paleo diet is actually one that makes sense, after all, people in the paleolithic age were not exposed to carbohydrates, dairy or processed foods. As a result, the paleo people did not have illness or obesity like there is in today’s society. The book gives the reader the types of food a person should eat and avoid. In addition, it contains sample menus and recipes for the first week. The best part of the paleo diet is the dieter does not have to count calories, he is allowed as much of the acceptable foods as he wants. The book suggests the reader takes a week to prepare, mentally and physically, before starting the diet; a great idea considering many people start without planning. With the meal planner, the list of acceptable foods, where to purchase them, and recipes, this diet should be the last diet a person should ever need.

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2

Jan 01, 2015

This was an incredibly basic introduction to paleo. I guess the author took the word "essentials" quite literally. At 56 pages, it gives a quick overview of what the paleo diet is, two to three sentences on its history, and then basically consists of lists of foods you can and can't eat on the diet. There's a chapter or two on embracing your new "lifestyle"--all very common sense and nothing that hasn't been included in a million other diet books. A few recipes are included in the back, but I This was an incredibly basic introduction to paleo. I guess the author took the word "essentials" quite literally. At 56 pages, it gives a quick overview of what the paleo diet is, two to three sentences on its history, and then basically consists of lists of foods you can and can't eat on the diet. There's a chapter or two on embracing your new "lifestyle"--all very common sense and nothing that hasn't been included in a million other diet books. A few recipes are included in the back, but I wouldn't go so far as to say that it's a cookbook, and quite frankly, I wasn't really impressed by the recipes anyway. What irked me most about this book is that the author kept alluding to studies done on the paleo diet, but doesn't cite any sources or references, so you just have to take what he's saying at face value. Hmmm.

This book was fine for me, as I'm just curious about the diet (or lifestyle, if you will) but don't have any serious convictions about adopting it. Those who are considering going forward with eating a paleo diet might want to look elsewhere for a better guide book. ...more
5

Oct 11, 2012

A Step Into The Past, A Step Toward The Future

Rather than trying all of those tired, flash-in-the-pan diets, take a step backwards and try the ancient world. The paleo diet, revised for the modern cave-dweller, is a strict regimen meant to get you healthy and strong. This is the perfect diet book for daring beginners. John Chatham, as fans if his work will attest, doesn't miss a beat. He schools you on the how and the why and gives you all the knowledge and support needed for success.

Learn A Step Into The Past, A Step Toward The Future

Rather than trying all of those tired, flash-in-the-pan diets, take a step backwards and try the ancient world. The paleo diet, revised for the modern cave-dweller, is a strict regimen meant to get you healthy and strong. This is the perfect diet book for daring beginners. John Chatham, as fans if his work will attest, doesn't miss a beat. He schools you on the how and the why and gives you all the knowledge and support needed for success.

Learn about the pre-agricultural diet, its trends and benefits, for example; how protein builds lean muscle and burns fat faster. Conversely, run-of-the-mill high-carb diets recommend starchy grain that spike blood sugar, which in turn slows the metabolism causing weight gain. Feeling the knowledge yet? Wait until you browse the cook book. From the history of the paleo diet to words of wisdom and motivational support, The Paleo For Beginners is the last book diet novices will ever buy. ...more
5

Oct 18, 2012

In John Chatham’s Paleo diet, we find a program dedicated to healthy eating through a Paleolithic diet approach, backed with research to give legitimacy to their findings, and the inevitable weight loss displayed as the by-product of following good nutritional eating habits (a refreshing change). The diet goes against the grain of what we commonly hear as the “sensible” diet approach, but goes into great detail explaining why - historically, medically, and nutritionally. I found it refreshing to In John Chatham’s Paleo diet, we find a program dedicated to healthy eating through a Paleolithic diet approach, backed with research to give legitimacy to their findings, and the inevitable weight loss displayed as the by-product of following good nutritional eating habits (a refreshing change). The diet goes against the grain of what we commonly hear as the “sensible” diet approach, but goes into great detail explaining why - historically, medically, and nutritionally. I found it refreshing to also be thoroughly enlightened on what “not to eat,” (which went way beyond my immediate vision of frozen and fast foods) and why. With a plethora of food suggestions and preparations offered as well as how to personalize your meals contingent upon your particular eating habits, I found this text to be an enlightening and well put together option for those looking to eat healthy and enjoy it as well as lose the inimitable unwanted weight. ...more
5

Jan 22, 2013

This is a fun adventure in dieting.John Chatham has taken a very complicated diet and made it not only doable but fun and a real adventure. I have friends and family on the paleo diet but when u saw how complicated it was I was not interested. Then as friend told me about this wonderful book. I feel great and have already lost weight. If is way going to the store and into the kitchen when you know what you are doing.The writer gives you an understanding of how you should start eating and why This is a fun adventure in dieting.John Chatham has taken a very complicated diet and made it not only doable but fun and a real adventure. I have friends and family on the paleo diet but when u saw how complicated it was I was not interested. Then as friend told me about this wonderful book. I feel great and have already lost weight. If is way going to the store and into the kitchen when you know what you are doing.The writer gives you an understanding of how you should start eating and why this diet is what you should eat. He also gives you alternatives to very expensive dishes that other books on this subject insist on. The meal plans are easy and flexible. lots of flavor and with the way the writers meal plans work I am never hungry exactly in the kitchen when I start preparing the dishes. this is as new look at an ancient way of eating. I'm hooked and this is the way we will eat from now on so thank you John. You have made its healthy and happy. ...more
5

Nov 02, 2016


Even though I am not a Beginner, my husband and I have been following the Paleo plan for 4 months. I found this book to be very informative. The recipes are excellent, I have tried maybe half of them. I loved having all the information I needed, right there in one book. I had to research the internet when we got started. Wish I had Johns book from the beginning. If you follow the plan, the weight lose is slow and steady, we have lost collectively 85 pounds. But the most important aspect is your
Even though I am not a Beginner, my husband and I have been following the Paleo plan for 4 months. I found this book to be very informative. The recipes are excellent, I have tried maybe half of them. I loved having all the information I needed, right there in one book. I had to research the internet when we got started. Wish I had Johns book from the beginning. If you follow the plan, the weight lose is slow and steady, we have lost collectively 85 pounds. But the most important aspect is your health and the way you feel. We recently had a doctors appointment. Our numbers were all down and most were in the normal range. The doctor was very pleased with our results. What a great improvement from last time. It's not easy at first. You have to set your mind to the fact that you are worth it. We now enjoy it so much, we never plan to eat the way we did before. ...more
0

Oct 25, 2012

This was a fast read, full of information. We’ve all heard of the paleolitihic diet by now. John Chatham’s Paleo for Beginners is an great introduction to the nuts and bolts of this new lifestyle, full of important information. Everyone knows getting healthy is important, and this smart, fast book is sure to help readers break those unhealthy eating habits. The central idea here is that the purifying Paleo Diet will inevitably get rid of all the cravings for unhealthy food which usually lead to This was a fast read, full of information. We’ve all heard of the paleolitihic diet by now. John Chatham’s Paleo for Beginners is an great introduction to the nuts and bolts of this new lifestyle, full of important information. Everyone knows getting healthy is important, and this smart, fast book is sure to help readers break those unhealthy eating habits. The central idea here is that the purifying Paleo Diet will inevitably get rid of all the cravings for unhealthy food which usually lead to heart failure and other future health problems, it being the essential diet our ancestors ate before the invention of farming. I finished reading it in a couple of hours and am ready to start the diet. ...more

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