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Product details

  • Paperback: 640 pages
  • Publisher: Vermilion (1 Jan. 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0091924286
  • ISBN-13: 978-0091924287
  • Product Dimensions: 13.5 x 4.6 x 21.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (97 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 64,097 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

"Debunks the myths...and looks at what actually happens in your body when you eat" (Woman's Own)

"This informative book could challenge the way you think about food...in-depth but interesting" (Health and Fitness)

"Scholarly yet readable deconstuction of dieting...the most comprehensive book on the subject" (Good Book Guide)

"Read this, and you'll be astonished at the shaky foundations of dietary medicine and health advice... First off, I was struck by how little science does know, what we take for established fact if often partial truth at best. Conjectures are, apparently, made on imperfect research... compelling reading" (Sue Baker, Publishing News)

"This book is a most important contribution to Mankind - really an historic book" (Jeremy Stone, longtime president, The American Federation of Scientists)

Book Description

A brilliant debunking of the popular misconceptions on health and diet that also takes a hard look at the corporate world of the diet industry

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

50 of 50 people found the following review helpful By Scribe53 on 16 Jun. 2010
Format: Paperback
Okay, I should maybe have taken one star away because he could have used a good editor. He often repeats himself and goes around in circles and the book could have been shorter. For this reason it may be a hard slog for some.

But this could be one of the most important books you will ever read if you care about your health and longevity. Forget the low-fat nonsense. It seemed to make sense for a while, but it doesn't work. When I was a child nutritionists advised two ways of losing weight. Cutting carbs or cutting fat/calories. From the early seventies the latter one has become gospel. We have eaten less and less fat and - whether in the US or the UK - got fatter and fatter as a nation. The reason? We've been eating more starches, refined carbohydrates and sugars. Before 1900 we ate 5 lbs of sugar a year. Now we eat 135 lbs. A group of very biased researchers, pushing their own agenda, ignored evidence that conflicted with their low fat theories, and used political clout to make them the mainstream.

Some of this will be familiar to followers of Atkins and other low carb diets, but Taubes exhaustively covers the science and the politics. I am 100% convinced about everything he says, except his apparent distrust of exercise, which I believe can have a function of reducing blood glucose rather than reducing calories.

After five years overweight, in five months I lost 25 - 30 lbs by ignoring what my doctor told me about dieting and restricting refined carbohydrates. Now she tells me I'm so good at weight control I should write a book. I still don't give her the details. More and more people are learning this for themselves. The "authorities" will probably be the last to admit it.

Oh, and the government food pyramid is garbage. The Harvard food pyramid is much more sensible if you must trust any of them.
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27 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Yay!! TOP 500 REVIEWER on 16 Feb. 2011
Format: Paperback
Firstly, you'll find it easier to start off with Gary Taubes intro book "Why we get fat", which is stunning, and you'll automatically want to read this book next. It's a classic and a life changing book. I have Kindle and hard back copies of it - as it's too critical to "lose" or lend out.

This is the more indepth version - with the backing research (in the US it's called "good calories, bad calories").

Taubes is an accomplished writer - so sit back. You're about to be taken on a roller coaster of a ride.

In a nutshell, if you eat sugar, flour and other hi carb foods, you generate a lot of insulin.

Insulin is a very powerful hormone, that has the following effect...
1. Its stops you burning fat instantly, so if you eat carbs, you literally cannot lose weight.
2. Insulin is known as the hunger hormone, so you're starving and overeating.

Current Dieting advice is to eat 5 portions of fruit and veg. If you eat 4 meals plus 5 fruit, you'll be realising Insulin 9 times a day... so you'll be permanently starving and worse, unable to burn any fat... so won't lose weight at all.
Insulin triggers our overeating.

It's a constant cycle. This advice breaks that cycle and gives you masses of research to back up it's arguments. It's a stunning piece of work, that blasts government advice for the folly that it is.

All current diets miss the key factor - the influence of hormones.
This book introduces the concept that Obesity is "malnutrition", it's caused by poor quality foods in sugar and flour not by overeating or lack of exercise.
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174 of 178 people found the following review helpful By T. D. Welsh TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 19 Mar. 2009
Format: Paperback
After several decades of complete confusion - thanks to the bumbling incompetence of the scientific community and our government masters - I am now beginning to understand the relevant aspects of human metabolism, through reading Gary Taubes' groundbreaking book "The Diet Delusion". Not only do I now know that your body weight does not depend purely on how many calories you eat and how many you use - I also know exactly why.

Believe it or not, our mothers were right: starchy foods do make you fat! It turns out that eating fewer than 2000 calories a day of carbohydrates can make you very fat regardless of how much exercise you do, while cutting right back on carbohydrates and eating more fat - even if you exceed 3000 calories - can make you slimmer (and quickly too) without getting hungry. If you would like to understand how these things can be true, in spite of all we have been told, then read this book. I promise, you will understand.

There are no "new miracle diets" in here - just conscientious, accurate, painstaking explanation of the facts. Taubes himself is a journalist, not a scientist or doctor, so he has no axe to grind and no tenure to chase. He contents himself with reporting what has happened in nutrition research, ever since Mr Banting found he was unaccountably obese in the 1860s and was eventually restored to slimness and health through a diet that eliminated starchy foods. Then we had Ancel Keys and his cholesterol theory, and a gentleman named Newburgh who insisted that fatties simply have no will power. (Neither of those theories has ever stood up in experimental tests, which usually prove exactly the opposite).

A word of warning - "The Diet Delusion" is a fairly massive book, both in length and content, and will take several days to read.
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