Top critical review
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It won't work for everyone
on 13 April 2003
The message of the book is an important one, and whilst I recommend anyone with these diseases to read it, I also caution them that it may not work for everyone.
There is a positive side, I do have a little more energy.
After I read the book, I was left scratching my head wondering what on earth to have for lunch and dinner as the recipes are pretty dire (apart from the cakes). I decided to see a nutritionist who taught me a lot more than the book did. For example, food intolerances usually go with time after the food item has been removed for long enough and, sugar plays a fundamental role in affecting energy levels and emotions.
The tone of 'Breaking the Vicious Cycle' is very matronly, it feels as though it's directed more at parents of sufferers than the sufferers themselves. The nature of addictions should be covered in the book, after all, a lot of us are addicted to high-starchy and sugary foods without knowing it. The fact that you go 'cold turkey' can have profound effects on your mental state, just like cutting loose from any addiction. I was almost psychotic in the first week!!
I would agree that cutting out the refined sugars and grains is a good idea, although with me, it seems to be taking an aeon to have any effect. I'm going to have food intolerance testing carried out, as the book also fails to suggest that Candidiasis is implicated in conditions such as UC, in which case, whilst the SCD says honey is ok, Candida sufferers have to avoid it. Rice is ok for Candida, whereas rice is a no-no on the SCD. You may have been diagnosed with UC, but you may be suffering from Candidiasis.
Confused? I know I am.... It's a mine-field....
The book that I derived more from is 'Cooking Without' (also 'Vegetarian Cooking Without') by Barbara Cousins. There's an excellent introduction which fills the gaps that 'Breaking the Vicious Cycle' leaves. It's written in a much more caring and sympathetic way, and whilst many of the recipes aren't suitable for the SCD, the ones that are, are most definitely much more appestising!!
So to sum up: This book fails on emotional content, energy levels and blood sugar, decent recipe ideas, a sympathetic tone.