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In defense of food - by Michael Pollan

paul wheaton
Trailboss

Joined: Dec 14, 1998
Posts: 20494
    ∞

I finished this a week ago or so. I thought it was really good. The focus of the book was that we really have very little knowledge in what we need for good nutrition. And, that with good nutrition, a lots of problems like cancer and diabetes virtually disappear.

Early in the book he told a story of a study done in australia where a group of aborigines were all suffering for diabetes and all sorts of other stuff. This was a group of fellas that ten years ago decided to come out of the bush and live with the white folks. The study was to take them back to the bush and have them eat they way they did before and see what happened to their health. It seems that nearly all of their health problems went away.


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David O'Meara
Rancher

Joined: Mar 06, 2001
Posts: 13459

I can accept the dietary effect on diabetes but I think saying cancer disappears is a bit strong.
True about the Australian Aborigines, but to my knowledge it is more of metabolism issue. As bad as the nutrition is in many Western cultures, native Australians were nomads and have more dominant body chemistry designed to store and release fat in the body for boom and bust periods. When you have a metabolism that constantly stores fat with no lean period then you head for trouble. Imo.
paul wheaton
Trailboss

Joined: Dec 14, 1998
Posts: 20494
    ∞

I think pollan makes a very good case, backed by research, about diet and cancer. Have you read it?

David O'Meara
Rancher

Joined: Mar 06, 2001
Posts: 13459

I haven't read that, but from other reading it indicates that cancer risks can be reduced by certain foods, but that is not the same as saying that the correct diet will make cancer disappear.
Gregg Bolinger
GenRocket Founder
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Joined: Jul 11, 2001
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    6

The Food Revolution makes a lot of similar claims about the relationship between diet (although mostly meat) and cancer, as well as heart disease, diabetes, etc. Robbins also tells a similar story about oral health in that a tribe that eats mainly a plant based diet have nearly perfect teeth with no history of teeth cleaning or anything. No decay and no gum disease.

Robbins also states that only about 2% of breast cancer cases are unrelated to diet. I'd get the exact quote and the source to go with it (Robbins has sources for all his claims) but I can't seem to find my book right now. I haven't read the book Paul is talking about so take this for what it is worth but it is hard for me to believe that "we have very little knowledge in what we need for good nutrition".

Robbins' book is very swayed towards veganism, not overall nutrition, so keep that in mind if you are considering reading it.


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paul wheaton
Trailboss

Joined: Dec 14, 1998
Posts: 20494
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David O'Meara wrote:I haven't read that, but from other reading it indicates that cancer risks can be reduced by certain foods, but that is not the same as saying that the correct diet will make cancer disappear.


Then this book may be of huge interest to you.

paul wheaton
Trailboss

Joined: Dec 14, 1998
Posts: 20494
    ∞

Gregg Bolinger wrote:[url=http://www.amazon.com/Food-Revolution-Your-Diet-World/dp/1573244872/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1286654298&sr=1-1]

Robbins' book is very swayed towards veganism,


Pollan sites studies that support vegan diets where people thrive, and vegan diets where people really suffer. Then diets that are nearly pure meat and people thrive (inuit), heavy dairy, heavy grain, heavy fat ..... nearly every diet imaginable, and the only diet that he bashes is "the western diet".

And a lot of it appears to be that if you have a good diet, you tend to also have really good teeth - without the need for brushing your teeth.

The book is unlike any other I have seen.

 
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