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221 of 223 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Chris
I recommend this book if, like me, you have spent time, effort and money trying to figure out how to remove your excess weight and have better all-round health.

This book is the second from Gary Taubes that I have read. The first `Good Calories, Bad Calories' (or The Diet Delusion here in the UK) is long, at nearly 600 pages, expects a knowledge and...
Published on 30 Dec 2010 by C. Hilder

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Advice that might help you lose fat.
I am not sure I agree with everything in this book, namely that you can eat any amount of protein or fats and not get/gain fat.

I have been lifting weights and eating 6 small meals of protein and good carbs for around 6 years now.

I have read many books, magazines and the diets of top bodybuilders who become incredibly ripped (5% and below body...
Published 2 months ago by Share the LOVE.


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54 of 57 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential reading, 16 Jan 2011
By 
Lester (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
I am so happy that this book not only lived up to expectations but exceeded them. It improves substantially upon The Diet Delusion/Good Calories, Bad Calories in terms of how well it's written. The arguments are much better focused as Taubes skilfully assembles his case against the current diet and nutrition paradigm. In particular his Adiposity 101 section is a masterclass in simplifying the science of fat metabolism. Unless the reader suspends critical thinking I really can't see how anyone could fail to find Taubes' position utterly compelling.

I think this book will be useful to people like myself who already endorse low-carb because it helps to clarify the arguments and will enable us to better articulate the sound scientific principles that underpin it. However, and perhaps more importantly, readers who may be skeptical or simply unaware of the causes of the current obesity epidemic will be shocked at the extent of the fraud that's been perpetrated on us by successive governments, scientists and medical authorities for the last forty years. It is truly staggering.

I hope you get this book and lend it out and encourage others to do the same. It's such an important message that it needs the widest possible audience.
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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The science of obesity, made simple., 12 Feb 2011
First things first. Gary Taubes is a highly acclaimed science writer. He has won many awards for his science writing and his book: "Bad Science: The Short Life and Weird Times of Cold Fusion" is endorsed by four Nobel prize winners no less! In short, I trust what he says.

He is not pushing a new diet fad. He's attempting to explain the science behind obesity in a clear and simple way, so that us mere mortals can understand it.

He spent over two years researching almost every article and research project on diet, nutrition and it's affect on health published over the last hundred years for his "Good calories, Bad calories" / "Diet delusion" book. I've read that book and it's VERY heavy going, but his conclusions are clear and hard to argue with.

This book is a much simplified version of that book. He's taken out most of the scientific references and simplified some of the science. The result is a much simpler and more readable book that has one clear and simple message: "If you want to lose weight, eat less carbohydrates". Whatever you do, don't follow the current nutritional advice of "low fat, high carbohydrate", it's based on some VERY bad science.

Don't be fooled by this books simplicity, he has FAR more evidence than he shows here.

If you are overweight, or suffer from diabetes, raised blood pressure, heart disease, etc. Then I strongly recommend that you read this book, it may just save your life!

BTW my copy was poorly bound too, but I was far more interested in the words rather than the pages.
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37 of 39 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Possibly the most significant purchase you'll ever make., 9 April 2011
By 
David (Holmfirth, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This book has quite simply changed my life.

Plain English, scientifically sound advice that turned everything I THOUGHT I knew about dieting on its head.

After ten years of trying to shed weight, I have now gone from 224 lb (16 stone) to 182 lb (13 stone)in three months.

I can't recommend it strongly enough. Read it cover to cover. The go back and use a marker on the most important bits. Then (once you've educated yourself to fully understand *why* you're doing it)change your way of eating to watch the pounds melt off.

Since buying this book I've bought four copies for other members of my family including my parents. For anyone who is struggling with obesity, it could literally be life saving.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars unarguable but completely at odds with everything you've been told about food., 10 Sep 2013
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This book is a revelation. Interesting and very readable it has challenged me to review 45 years of food education. My wife is a GP and my social circle has always subscribed to the calories in/calories out theory of weight control. Likewise the low fat diet. Likewise the regular fruit portions and whole grains.

This book doesn't sell a diet to make a quick buck from a quick book, it just sets out the evidence of decades of research and leaves it there for you to take in.

The outcome is my anger that what even now is being taught as good nutrition to my daughters at school is likely increasing the risk that they will age more quickly, put weight on more readily, and be more likely to suffer chronic disease.

This book deserves to be read by people who govern health policy, agriculture policy and education policy.

What is more likely is that this message will continue to be ignored because the cost of change would be dramatic and catastrophic for pharmaceutical companies and farming corporations, not least the fitness and health food industries.

Read this book. It will change your attitude to food for good.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A real eye opener, 30 Dec 2013
By 
R. Hoddinott - See all my reviews
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This is a very interesting and well written book. Don't be confused into thinking this is a diet book full of recipes and detailed meal plans. This is for those who actually want to understand the reasons behind why some people get fat, and why others don't. Once you understand it, you should be far better equipped to decide for yourself what to eat and what not to eat.

The basic message of the book, and this is stated within the first few pages, so I don't think I'm giving too much away here, is this: Carbohydrates, especially those refined carbohydrates and starchy foods which have entered into the human diet only very recently in evolutionary terms, are the primary causes for why we get fat, and increase our risks of getting modern western diseases like diabetes, heart disease, cancer and obesity. This view, as the author makes very clear, is contrary to the current views on nutrition held by most health authorities worldwide, who advocate diets high in carbohydrate and low in fat, and who believe that the best way to lose weight and reduce risk of western diseases is to reduce one's calorie intake and increase one's calorie expenditure via exercise.

At least half of the book is dedicated to presenting a series of arguments to support the author's view and debunk the views of health authorities. What is perhaps most profound about this book, is that the arguments the author makes, which I personally find very convincing, are not plucked out of thin air, they are based on uncontroversial science that already exists, and large scale scientific studies. The author explains in some detail the established science behind how carbohydrates affect levels of insulin in our bodies and the knock on effects this has. Also, rather than just cherry picking the studies which support his views, the author also addresses studies which do not, and explains why he believes they do not. This unbiased approach, I believe, adds credibility to his arguments.

I personally find it hard to dispute the conclusions drawn by the author - his arguments are based in scientific fact, and are both simple and logical. But read it for yourself - he's not forcing you into believing him, he presents his arguments and you are free to draw your own conclusions. Overall I found this book not just an informative book about the science of how and why we get fat, but an incredibly eye opening and thought provoking account of how the so called experts and authorities on nutrition have gotten it so wrong.

I would definitely recommend others to read this book - not just people trying to lose weight, but also those who are interested in the history and evolution of science, and especially anyone in the field of health and nutrition who doesn't mind having their established beliefs challenged.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Intresting Read, 4 Jan 2013
By 
Charles - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Why We Get Fat: And What to Do about It (Mass Market Paperback)
This book is an interesting read and has changed my understanding of food.
It argues that the old calories in vs calories out theory of weight gain/loss is incorrect and the body needs to be seen more from a hormonal view especially how it reacts to carbohydrates.

Important points it makes are:

1) Body fat is not a long term storage for energy, it's in use for energy all the time.

2) Eating carbohydrates causes a insulin rush which stops the body's normal fat burning and causes you to put on fat.

3) The high body fat causes a massive appetite and lack of energy because the fat consumes large amounts of calories/energy to maintain itself.

So what happens is you eat carbs, the carbs stop your body burning fat and cause you to put on fat. Then you get a massive appetite to feed all your fat so you eat more carbs and get even fatter.

It recommends a Atkins style diet of high fat, high protein, low carb, with little or no sugar diet.

A potential flaw in the theory is that people in the far east eat large amounts of carbohydrates (rice) and don't get fat, the book suggests this is because of the large amount of refined sugar we eat in the west increases insulin resistance that then opens the doors for the above mentioned carbohydrate insulin problems.

Most people that go on diets put all the weight back on when the diet is finished. The book says that keeping the weight off is just proper diet which as far as I know is over simplistic. If you have been over weight for a long time your body thinks that's your normal weight so when you lose weight your body thinks your starving and puts you in starvation mode. Starvation mode makes your body super efficient and causes you to become obsessed with food. You have to be very careful when in starvation mode because you will gain weight very fast because your body is being more efficient. To keep the weight off you have to stay in starvation mode for years until your body accepts your new weight as normal. No wonder most people fail. I am not an expert on the subject so might be wrong or misunderstood the book tho.

Based on my limited understanding of nutrition this book does appear to be roughly correct and I have lost weight on the diet it recommends.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Important Book, 17 Aug 2011
By 
J. Smith (Herefordshire) - See all my reviews
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I have followed a low carbohydrate diet regime before with good success. However, I was never quite convinced that it was the healthiest thing to do. This book has put my mind at rest. The evidence seems overwhelming. I'm now 99% sure it would be unhealthy NOT to restrict carbohydrates. Everybody should read this book. It is too important to ignore.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Some sense at last, 15 Jan 2011
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I have to admit that on first opening my book I was disappointed with the quality. The pages are cut to different sizes and are ragged. For a new book I did expect a better 'finish'.

Once I got over that I got into the 'meat' of the book. Pun intended! Having suffered with diets and binging and continual weight increases each time a low fat diet was finished this is something different.

Over the past 3 years I have dropped 40lbs using a combination of Atkins, SB, leptin etc but I have been doing a lower calorie version. Staying at around 1200 cals a day.

According to this book the lower cal option is not necessary. As long as our carbs are low as in a ketogenic diet then our body will naturally drop the fat as the insulin will not be produced to keep it locked in the fat cells.

The best bit for me was the refuting of the 'you are obese because you eat too much.' He argues that it is the other way round. Because our hormones push so much of our calories into storage the cells that need energy are starving which is why we need to eat more to keep our cells functioning. There is an interesting connection I made there to binging. Binging is the ultimate fix for starving cells. The brain doing all it can to get enough food into the system. So obesity is a disease of malnutrition.

I would recommend any dieter to read this book and finally understand what is happening in their body. I still have difficulty getting around the fix for obesity which is to ingest more fat and oils. Will make a change from the semi starvation of the last 40 years!
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You Decide!, 4 Mar 2012
This review is from: Why We Get Fat: And What to Do about It (Mass Market Paperback)
There are two leading theories as to why we get fat; either people are greedy and lazy, or what they eat affects their hormones affects their weight. Gary Taubes provides evidence that the latter is the real reason people gain excess fat, a view that was becoming widely accepted before the second world war intervened.

A shortened, accessible book of Taube's earlier works, managing to cover key aspects. The health of our nation may benefit from such infomation in contrast to mainstream 'healthy eating' guidelines influenced by the food industry.

Good read; excellent value!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Taubes triumphs again!, 24 Nov 2012
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I read The Diet Delusion in 2008. It was a tome, but I was gripped and ploughed through. I was shocked at how off-the-mark the health education professionals and medical establishment seemed to be on the cause of obesity and how to treat it. After reading Why We Get Fat, it struck me that it is such a terrible injustice that obese individuals are considered greedy and lazy, as if their obesity is down to weak character. Taubes very clearly argues and demonstrates that obesity is a result of the modern Western hi-carb diet, it is a problem related to the food supply. I found sections on fat metabolism and the endocrine system really illuminating in this volume. I am convinced by his meta-study of existing research and hope that as many people as possible read this important book so we can tackle the obesity epidemic effectively.
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Why We Get Fat: And What to Do about It
Why We Get Fat: And What to Do about It by Gary Taubes (Mass Market Paperback - 20 Feb 2012)
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