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Microbiome Diet Hardcover – 17 Jul 2014

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Da Capo Lifelong Books (17 July 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0738217654
  • ISBN-13: 978-0738217659
  • Product Dimensions: 3.2 x 17.1 x 24.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 70,242 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


"The leading edge of medical research is focused on the fundamental role of our microbiome in influencing every aspect of health and longevity. In The Microbiome Diet, Dr. Kellman masterfully presents a life-enhancing, actionable plan based on this emerging science in a way that is user-friendly, for all of us."--David Perlmutter, MD, author of the New York Times bestseller Grain Brain "Manage your microbiome for fast fat loss? Based on cutting-edge research, The Microbiome Diet shows you how optimal gut health can leave you lean, vibrant, sexy, and looking years younger. Filled with delicious recipes and practical, easy-to-implement strategies to become your healthiest self, I couldn't put this book down!"-- JJ Virgin, CNS, CHFS, author of the New York Times bestseller The Virgin Diet "I am so excited by the release of Dr. Kellman's important new book. In clear, lucid writing, readers are elegantly transported to the cutting-edge science behind the microbiome and provided with practical, pragmatic advice that empowers them to employ simple techniques that will yield life-long benefit."--Dr. Peter J. D'Adamo, author of the New York Times bestseller Eat Right For Your Type "After decades of killing bacteria with antibiotics, we have finally reached the era of probiotics. This switch is crucial for our health, and The Microbiome Diet will show you how."--Christiane Northrup, MD, author of Women's Bodies, Women's Wisdom Natural Solutions, September 2014 "Reset your metabolism and free yourself from food cravings and an uncontrollable appetite with Dr. Kellman's revolutionary diet, which shows us how to balance the gut's healthy bacteria. Lose weight and keep it off with this nonrestrictive plan."

About the Author

An internist and pioneer in holistic medicine, Raphael Kellman, MD, is the founder of the Kellman Center for Functional and Integrative Medicine. Dr. Kellman lives with his family in Manhattan.

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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Luigi on 6 Aug. 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A low level easy to read intro to the subject of microbes and diet with a mix of science and pseudoscience - and of course a list of supplements, recipes and commercial plugs - disapointing
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is an enlightening book. It explains some fascinating science, and written in an easy to understand way. A must buy for all especially anyone with some stubborn health or weight problems.
Read this before going down the route of gastric band surgery for obesity, and you may find this is a much safer and more natural way to lose the excess weight!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 84 reviews
118 of 119 people found the following review helpful
From experience, I know this is correct 19 Jun. 2014
By lamia - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The method of eating in this book works. Very quickly too.

I am NOT a patient of the doctor, but I have been following the method of eating in this book several months before this book came out. I arrived at this diet by studying research on the gut microbiome and figuring out how to implement that research into my own eating. The amazing thing to me is that the doctor's recommended diet and conclusions are similar to my own. And what he has observed in his patients is exactly what I have observed of myself.

I have spontaneously lost a lot of weight and six inches off my waistline. My lipids are great, but were statin worthy before I started. I have lost hypoglycemia, allergies of all types, and simply feel great. I felt I was a very healthy person before I started, but the list of improved things is very long.

I say "spontaneously" because, as the doctor states, this is not a diet requiring calorie counting. It does not require restricting any particular macronutrient. You eat what you normally eat (minus bad foods listed by the doctor, but this was not a big deal for me) but add gut friendly foods. The emphasis is on inulin, found in garlic, onions, asparagus, and such. I'll add dandelion greens because I enjoy them and they are a better source than a few of the others mentioned. Also probiotic foods. I will also point out that some Korean markets have leek kimchi and scallion kimchi, so one can get a dose of inulin along with the probiotics. Plus authentic Korean kimchi to me is better than the health-store "kimchi".

I found that I was losing weight, about 2 lbs per week. Without doing anything other than making sure I got plenty of gut friendly foods. Then my tastes started changing. I'd get out of the blue cravings. One was for raw honey (sorry doc, I know it is on your bad list, but my gut wanted it). I've never eaten it raw since an allergic reaction some time ago. One tablespoon, and that's what I needed. Other similar cravings. Soon I learned to listen to my gut and let it tell me what I needed. It's almost a dialogue between my brain and my gut. I eat what I want, but to be frank what I want is good, healthy food.

Now my weight is stable at a healthy level. I eat what I want. But what I want is different from before. I want onions. I want garlic. I want all the good stuff that feeds the gut. The doctor says at various stages you can deviate 90% or 70% from the diet. The funny thing to me is these deviation numbers also seem automatic - I'd say they are about right, but the gut stops you from going to far. It's not something I have to think about.

I try to get as much of my fiber as possible from real food. But there are some advantages to supplementation as well. I was previously hypoglycemic, but my symptoms did not fully disappear until I started taking glucomannan. Also, for those of us with cholesterol issues, there are several fibers of benefit. These additional fibers are not in the book.

I end with a quotes from the book that perfectly reflects my experience:

"Restoring their intestinal health and balancing the microbiome frees them from cravings and compulsions while putting them in touch with what their body needs and wants. It's almost as if they have awakened their 'inner nutritionist', instinctively seeking foods they need to remain healthy, energized, and fit."

Exactly! We discovered it independently, but the doctor has a great book!
81 of 82 people found the following review helpful
Works But With Long Term Benefits 30 Jun. 2014
By Talvi - Published on
Format: Hardcover
The microbiome Diet, though very science sounding, is actually a diet uniquely suited for those who have tried various diets in the past and never found results. It's a new approach built upon the principle that the obesity problem many are facing is due to the digestive system being compromised by the foods we are eating - leading to leaky gut, inflammation, increased hunger and cravings, and other health problems ranging from soreness to lack of concentration. The way our food is processed in the body is greatly aided and abetted by microbiomes - bacteria in the gut. When there is an imbalance (lack of certain bacteria or too many bad ones), our health suffers and we gain weight.

The diet is based around "Four Rs": 1) Remove the unhealthy bacteria and the foods that unbalance the microbiome; 2) Replace the digestive enzymes that you need for optimal digestion; 3) Reinoculate with probiotics (intestinal bacteria) and prebiotics 9foods and supplements that nourish this bacteria and keep it healthy); 4) Repair the lining of your intestinal walls, which have likely become permeable and are releasing partially digested food into the bloodstream and causing major problems like inflammation.

The diet has three phases. In the first, you avoid sugar, eggs, soy, gluten, and dairy (as well as all packaged/artificial foods). This is the heart of the four Rs above. Phase 2 is the metabolic boost. You eat a wider range of foods and introduce some items like milk and eggs. Phase 3 is about maintaining healthy weight loss. You eat about 70% of the phase 2 foods and then some 'goodies' in between.

The diet is set up to cleanse the system of the bad stuff, heal your gut, and in the process wean you off the items that cause the insatiable cravings and hunger. At the same time, improve all over health. Recipes and a meal plan are given at the beginning, as well as a shopping list for each stage. Recipes are set up to be made quickly and easily using fairly staple foods. Chicken, salads, seafood, etc.

For the recipes, I had a few problems with the directions (e.g., I have no idea what I'm doing when I'm told to "deglaze the vinegar"). As well, with a few I wasn't really sure what was going on (e.g., I'm told to saute garlic and then add wet Kale and let it simmer - but I'm not quite sure how wet the kale should be?). But on the whole, I was able to follow the recipes and they satisfied me - I wasn't left hungry. There were no surprises here - a lot of the recipes are superfood centered, so you'll see similar iterations in other cookbooks that focus on organic and superfoods like cruciferous vegetables and legumes). I wish there was more information about substitutions (e.g., I can't eat seafood and when given an ingredient like apple cider vinegar, I'd like to know if malt cider is an acceptable alternative.)

Although there weren't a lot of exotic ingredients (I wasn't able to get jerusalem artichoke or kimchee at my local store), there are resources on where to get many ingredients. One big downside for me was tracking down the huge amount of supplements, which was 7-10 pills a day and some powders. Be prepared - it is a heavy cost up front (perhaps not as heavy in the long run for good health, though). If you are outside of the US, this will be a hard diet to follow.

Recipe examples include: minted fruit salad with brazil nuts, rich vegetable soup, jerk cornish game hen, mussels steamed in beer, gazpacho smoothie, stuffed mushrooms, and snacks such as baked kale chips.

I've tried the diet for 3 weeks now and the cravings really do go down. I haven't received all the supplements in the mail or tracked down all the ingredients as of the time of writing this, though, and will update later. But the weight is coming off.

If buying the Kindle version, the formatting is a bit harder to read than with the book version, so I recommend the physical copy.

Reviewed from an ARC.
55 of 58 people found the following review helpful
See update below. They give cows and chickens anti-biotics to make them fat. What do you think it does to us? 22 July 2014
By Lisa-I'm talking here! - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Ok. I give the writing 3 stars and it probably could have been a simple 10 page essay, BUT let me tell you a few things. I have been on the program for 2 weeks and who knows I may be stuffing my face with gelato tomorrow but right now I feel GOOD! I'm down 12 pounds (I have a lot to lose, you probably won't lose as much). I don't have cravings. I'm sleeping better. I have more energy. I've been out to dinner and to a birthday party and didn't even feel tempted. My memory and brain function are improving and the rosacea on my face is subsiding. There is such a noticeable difference that my husband and my sister-in-law want to try the program too. The strictest "diet" portion of the book only lasts 3 weeks and then you switch to 90% compliance and 10% indulgence. After 7 weeks total you're start 70% compliance and 30% indulgence (within reason of course). Plus you can have avocado, shrimp and butter in the FIRST part of the program. Not bad at all. I will update with my progress in a few weeks. Even if only half of what the doctor says is true it will be a mini-miracle. Think good thoughts for me!

Update: I have successfully completed Phase 1 without cravings or cheating! I am now moving into Phase 2. I started this July 7, 2014 and as of August 3, 2014 I am down 19.8 pounds. Everyone keeps complimenting me on my complexion and my mood is wonderful.

Update: OK. So the transition did not go well. I had organic corn tortillas and it was like a switch in my head went off and the cravings came back like crazy. I gained back 8 of the pounds I lost and my mood got worse and the Rosacea started coming back. I am now trying to work my way back into the first phase and I am going to stay there for much longer since my problems are so significant and not have any corn when transitioning (I may not even try to transition if it's going as well as before.) I'm not going to lie, it made me really sad because I was doing so WELL and feeling so happy. But I am doing better. However, I can really tell when I eat the foods that impact my gut and I have been doing better with that.

Update(11/3/2014): I found out I was not taking enough pro-biotic. I ordered the Gut Pro from Organic 3 recommended in the book but I ordered the capsules which have only 5 billion micros and I was supposed to be taking a minimum of 50 billion. I ordered the powder and I'm hoping that will be more helpful and I am going to try again.
28 of 32 people found the following review helpful
Revive Your Gut Microbiome, Reprogram Your Metabolism! 8 July 2014
By Mike Mutzel, MS(c) - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Dr. Raphael Kellman does a great job exploring the importance of the forgotten metabolic organ inside our body: the microbiome. He provides the science that will convince you to stop the calorie, carb, and fat counting!

Instead, Dr. Kellman suggests a better approach: a diet that is healthy for your gut AND gut microbiome. I couldn't agree more! He also discusses how eating Western foods (sugar, grains, soy, gluten, processed fats, and dairy) can activate the immune system and lead to cravings, inflammation, and fat storage.

I really like how Dr. Kellman reveals simple strategies and food choices that we can all incorporate to improve the health of our microbiome, including herbs, spices, and lesser-known foods that have prebiotics to feed our good bacteria.

Last but not least, I found chapters 7 and 8 to be most informative about stress. Balancing stress and mindful eating are major areas that many people underappreciate, and Dr. Kellman points to the science that shows how stress can disturb your gut bacteria and make you fat.
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
Get it from the library 30 Dec. 2014
By Amazon Customer - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition
I got this from the library and am glad I did so. The Microbiome Diet reads like it was written by someone who noticed that "gut health" was getting a lot of play in blogs and scientific literature, and determined that there was a buck to be made by jumping on the microbiome train. It is marketed as a "scientifically proven" method for losing weight (indeed, it's in the book's subtitle), but citations are scarce. Perhaps the worst part is that some things in the book are just flat-out wrong. For example, Kellman correctly notes that the bacteria strain lactobacillus gasseri has been demonstrated to help lose weight, but he occasionally refers to it as acidophillus gasseri, which is incorrect. I would hope that an "expert" on the microbiome would at least be able to get the names of his bacteria strains correct. He also peddles the myth that you should eat smaller meals more frequently to lose weight, which has been thoroughly debunked (feel free to Google it, since Amazon doesn't allow links in its reviews). Kellman is also prone to woo-woo flights of new-agey fancy, musing about how mindful eating can help you lose weight, save the planet, etc. I'm all for mindfulness, but I threw up a in my mouth a little bit when I read that. Frankly, I'm more inclined to trust the work of certain bloggers who have devoted much of their time to researching the gut. Dr. Grace Liu at Animal Pharm has a lot of fascinating, research-backed info on her site, as does Tim Steele at Vegetable Pharm.

The diet itself could be explained in a couple of pages, rendering most of the book extraneous or redundant. Briefly: eat more-or-less paleo for three weeks (though lentils and chickpeas are permitted, as are carrots), plus lots of functional foods like sauerkraut and kimchee. Focus on high-fiber and high-inulin foods like asparagus, jerusalem artichokes, and jicama. After 3 weeks, add in some legumes and dairy (goat's and sheep's milk dairy is better than cow's milk; kefir is preferred), and reduce compliance to 90% so you can have the occasional dessert. After a few more weeks, reduce compliance to 70%. The entire time, take a broad-based probiotic, plus prebiotics like inulin and supplements like cal-mag butyrate, as well as something to repair leaky gut and something to kill off parasites/bad bacteria (Designs for Health's GI Revive and Microb-X are suggested). That's the long and short of the Microbiome Diet.

Kellman conveniently offers his own line of supplements (of COURSE he does), which he gently pushes in the book (though to his credit, he gives other alternatives as well). If you go to his web store, none of the supplements have prices. Instead, you can check off the ones you're interested in and submit your contact info, and "[s]omeone will be in touch with you within 24 business hours to review pricing and complete your order." You have to order the supplements to see what they cost! (Cheers if you got the reference.)

It's too bad, because this is an important subject that deserves a good, evidence-based, yet accessible book to filter the good info from the bad or useless. Hopefully Dr. Liu writes a book on the subject. This diet may make you lose weight, if only because it's a fairly paleo diet that avoids all processed foods. But the pushing of his supplements, occasional lapses into new-age drivel, and mistakes/inaccuracies - which, like the 13th chime of a clock, are not only wrong in and of themselves but cast doubt on the 12 that came before - leave me unable to recommend this book.
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