I came to this book in a roundabout way. I saw a DVD by the author offered and well-reviewed at an online movie-rental site and recommended it to a sick family member. She, in turn, visited the author's website--mentioned in the movie--and purchased this book (which came with the DVD "Eating"). I have to say, I was suspicious. It sounded like the movie was a bait piece designed lure viewers into making another purchase.
As it turns out, that is not the case at all. Sadly, the diet restrictions presented in this book proved to be too...I don't want to say strict, because that would suggest a harshness that isn't there--so I'll say that it was too undesirable for this family member, so she passed the book on to me. I love it.
The book advocates an uncompromising vegan low fat diet. And by low fat, I mean LOW fat--no refined fats whatsoever, including oils (yes, that includes olive oil). And no dairy. And, of course, no refined foods or meat. Quitting meat was easy for me, as I would often go long periods without eating it; I'd given up meat a couple months before, anyway, to lower my cholesterol. Giving up olive oil (and yogurt and milk in my cereal!) is much harder; I miss cheese and chips the most.
But the author makes the change easier by presenting a compelling argument and effective refutations of common misconceptions about diet--misconceptions that are often deliberately promulgated by the meat and dairy lobby. Anderson's book is copiously documented, citing research from a broad range of scholarly medical journals and books. For instance,he provides compelling evidence to demonstrate that the body's immune system will not function to reverse serious disease until fat consumption is no more than 10% of total calories, but that when this level is reached and maintained, our bodies can and will reverse even serious diseases like cancer and hearth disease. Anderson is a health crusader, yes, but not of the sort like, say, Paul and Patricia Bragg, who make strong claims in their publications but provide no corroborating research. When Anderson makes a remarkable health claim, it is backed up by precise references to current, credible research.
Anderson also provides some recipes. I was skeptical about sauteing in wine or vegetable broth instead of oil...but I really don't notice much of a difference. I have tried two of the recipes so far (Basmati, Vegetables and Fruit, p. 174, and Curried Mushrooms, Avocados and Rice, p. 182), and both are excellent.
I wonder if this diet can heal a bad tooth. I'm scheduled for a root canal in a few days....