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4.5 out of 5 stars
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on 4 January 2012
A treasure trove of all the information about the real super foods. It goes through the body system by system (Skin, Digestion, Heart & Circulatory System, Immune System, Joints and Nervous System) and discusses how each system works, what we need to maintain it, what foods to avoid, what foods to consume and a few helpful (and seriously tasty sounding) recipes to aid each area.
The real goldrush, for me, however, is the later half which is an A-Z guide "to the most powerful, common, medicinal foods on the planet", namely, what grains, fruits, nuts, seeds, culinary herbs, spices and vegetables give the most bang for their buck and how best to prepare them. I LOVE this book, and have been waiting for something like this for ages. For full review see: [...]
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on 30 June 2011
As someone who writes about food and cookery myself, I was expecting to meet just another author when I stopped in at my local book shop to see who was signing books in my local store. Instead, I found a man who inspired me not only to think more carefully about the food that I was feeding myself, but also to plan meals which would be a benfit rather than a hindrance to the health of the whole family. The book explains the chemical compounds of many everyday foods and also advises on the benefits they bring to the immune system, the heart and the joints, among others. It is clearly written and concise. I have been handing out copies of this book to everyone I know for the past six weeks, it is truly inspirational. Well done Dale.
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on 29 December 2011
This is a copy of the review I posted on my blog.

I was sent a free review copy of this book but the review below is entirely my own opinion, I do use a few phrases from the press release I received with the book to start (these are in quotation marks " ")

The book was published on 21st April by Right Way (an imprint of Constable and Robinson), retailing at £7.99 but it is currently £4.49 on Amazon.

"Dale Pinnock B.Sc (Hons), top health expert, nutritionist and the UK's First Medicinal Chef is proud to announce the launch of his first book, `Medicinal Cookery: How You Can Benefit From Nature's Edible Pharmacy'."

"In this new, accessible book, Dale helps readers to literally `eat themselves better', through fun and delicious recipes that target our healing needs for many common chronic disorders. Readers will also gain an understanding of the healing powers of Phytochemicals in food."

"Readers learn how many of these compounds, when delivered in the right way, can work in a very similar way to medicinal plants, and even pharmaceutical drugs (minus the side effects). These concepts are not bizarre pseudo-scientific ideas, but actual solid concepts based upon biochemistry and human Metabolic Physiology. "

"Dale Pinnock is the First in the UK to bring together three distinct strands: Herbal Medicine, nutrition and cookery, to create a radically new way to help combat a wide range of common health problems. The focus of Dale's Medicinal cookery is not nutrition. It is in fact the phytochemicals that are in the ingredients. Phytochemicals are non nutritional, but biologically and pharmacologically active compounds that are found in plants. These chemicals can be anything from the colour pigments, to substances that plants use like hormones, right through to unique chemicals that would provide a plant with food and fuel. The individual study of these compounds is a rapidly emerging science. "

The first thing to say about this is that the front cover is very eye-catching and inviting and that the book itself is more portable than your average cookbook (it has 186 pages and is potentially handbag size (depending on the size of your handbag that is!). The internal pages are full of colourful pictures of the raw ingredients.

This isn't a traditional cookery book, it is a book teaching you to understand the healing properties of the food we eat, there are some recipes in the book (not as many as I was expecting) but it's more about you understanding what foods to eat, when and why and maybe making your own recipes based on your own personal health needs.

Dale starts by introducing food as medicine and a chapter on phytochemicals (Phyto =plant)
Next he presents recipes designed to help address the health of the following body systems:
Skin, Digestion, Heart and Circulatory, Immune, Joints, Nervous.
Finally an A-Z guide of medicinal fruit, grains, nuts and seeds, culinary herbs and spices, vegetables - this includes tips on the best way to cook or utilise them in recipes.

As a vegetarian the fact that all of the listed foods are things I can eat is very appealing and looking through there are a number of recipes I would like to try (in fact this review is later than it should be is because I wanted to at least try one recipe before I posted the review). Most look pretty easy to make - my main criticism is that there are no pictures of the final product. This is just a personal preference though so that I can check how bad my versions look!

I found it interesting that Dale suggests that it was only when moving to a 'diet focused around fresh plant foods' compared to a diet with supplements that he noticed a shift in his health. I take a number of supplements and don't particularly feel that great, I'm getting all the nutrients I'm meant to need but what Dale suggests is that certain plants actually work as medicines on top of this through how their biochemistry works with our systems. Each recipe talks you through the medicinal properties of its raw ingredients.

So I decided to pick the Anti-Parasite Pesto to make, not I hasten to add that I have parasites that I know of, but because:

a) I like pesto (though clearly not as much as Dale who suggests he can sit and eat spoonfuls of the stuff)

b) It looked relatively easy and something I hopefully could make and eat quickly (pumpkin seeds, basil, garlic, extra virgin olive oil and crystal salt blended - Dale gives you quantities)

c) I bought a basil plant especially (that I managed to keep alive for a very long time - which is not like me at all).

I served the finished product with triple colour pasta. The pesto was quite thick (hence Dale eating it with a spoon ;o)) so if there are few of you eating you may need to play around with quantities to get good coverage on the pasta. And, despite me making it, it tasted pretty darn good and is something I would definitely make again.

Other recipes that are calling out to be made are: Omega Butter Crostinis, Apple Jacks, Chocolate Orange Truffle Torte, (I own agave nectar now too - which I use instead of sweetener or sugar in my tea, both which are too sweet now so I've occasionally been having it without anything), Garlic Honey (for use during colds, not everyday if you would like to keep friends - I have been totally won over by the very expensive but very expensive manuka honey recommended by Dale).

A number of the soup, risotto and other recipes calls for celery as an ingredient but I would have to substitute or leave this out because, I'm sorry Dale but no amount of telling me how detoxifying and cleansing celery will make me eat it (it's the devil's food - bleurgh - I was so mortified to spot it in my Winter Stew at my works Christmas Do, where it was promptly ejected into a water glass - luckily the flavour didn't hang around so I managed to eat the rest).

If you are interested in starting a healthier diet in the new year and knowing more about what you are putting into your bodies I would definitely recommend this book which I gave 4/5 stars (because of the lack of pictures of finished products).
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on 20 December 2011
really enjoyed this book, if you are interested in food,cooking and your health this is the book for you.The recipes are simple and tasty. it is not a cook book that will sit on the shelve, you will use it again and again
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on 28 April 2011
This is such a fantastic book. I heard Dale on the radio six months ago and immediately pre-ordered my copy. In the book he explains in easily understood language why certain foods are so beneficial to our health and how to incorporate them into our daily diet. I would recommend this book to anyone seeking to improve their overall health, or to deal with a specific condition or area of concern.
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on 7 January 2012
I received this book only 4 days ago and read it immediately.

It is easy to read, with delicious recipes - I have tried several already and they are delicious (pineapple smoothie, and flu busting soup) week I intend to make many more - trying out some recipes each day. THis is the best book of its kind to be published for some time......(Believe me I own about 100 of them!!!).

I was so impressed by this book, I have sent six other copies out to my family for the grandchildren so that they can enjoy the benefits of all this wholesome food.
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on 4 February 2012
Clear. Concise. Fascinating scientific food facts presented in an easy to digest (sorry!) fashion. The straightforward recipes using readily accessible and staple ingredients meant I could get started straight away. There's a lot of repetition if you read the book cover to cover as I did, but that has helped me remember the information about different foods - useful when shopping. An unexpected bonus for me was that all the recipes are vegetarian. Perhaps that should have been obvious from the cover and the overview - but I was delighted not to have to adapt ingredients. But although it happens to be a great book for vegetarians, it's actually the book for anyone who wants to understand how to maintain a healthy body (or treat certain symptoms) courtesy of nature. I hope there will be a Medicinal Cookery 2 out soon.
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on 5 October 2011
this book was bought on the advice of a friend, who was so impressed with the information it has. I am also impressed with this book it is packed with useful information that really works. For example after eating a whole head of celery the inflammation of my arthritis in one of my joints has almost gone.Not to say it will be back, but just one example of numerous everyday foods that can be eaten to benefit you
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on 22 April 2013
I bought this book after I bought Dal Pinnock's newer book "The Medicinal Chef" as I wanted to learn more about beneficial foods. Dale works through the body's systems and explains what foods can beneficially help of affect certain workings within the body.

As other reviewers have mentioned, there is some repetition, however, I can see why. Certain foods are beneficial to many systems or workings of the body and there is no avoiding that. Dale is logical in his approach and makes the 'science bits' most informative and interesting to read.

Even after reading both of Dale's books (this one and "The Medicinal Chef") I am left wanting more and with more questions than answers. For example, Dale makes no mention of strawberries or rhubarb in either book; and only makes a passing comment (in "The Medicinal Chef", no mention at all in this book) on sprouting seeds, when I know these are incredibly beneficial. What I mean to say is neither book is exhaustive, however, Dale clearly communicates that eating well, consistently - a long-term lifestyle choice - can only benefit the human body, and Dale provides an excellent basis - 'jumping-off' point - for anyone wishing to make sensible, realistic and long-term changes to their diet.

I personally find it very satisfying to know exactly what good the foods I am eating is doing for me and Dale explains this very well.

My only criticism would be that this book had a lot of potential to be seriously excellent rather than just a 'good basis' - Dale could have told us a lot more, especially about a lot more foods, bearing in mind his education, training and experience, hence only four stars.
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on 3 October 2011
This book is full of interesting information and great recipes. Delighted with my purchase. Will have it close to hand at all times :)
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